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trinistorm

Uri Wrappers

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I was reading on the first web browser and I noticed at the bottom of the page a "news:" wrapper. How common are protocols like these and are there any good links that I will allow me to observe how it works?

Edited by sansana

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I don't think that's called a "URI wrapper" - it's a scheme, just like http:, or mailto:, but for news. You can create a news: link for yourself (e.g. <a href="news:mozilla.support.firefox">Firefox support group</a>) and the linked newsgroup will open in your browser (if supported, most modern browsers don't do Usenet), or your Usenet client (e.g., Google Groups, Unison).Technically, you can make up any scheme you want (e.g., Valve made up the steam: one) and write some code so that browsers know what program to pass the value on to.Edit: ooh, I found an RFC describing some (old or common) schemes: RFC 1738 "Uniform Resource Locators (URL)" (section 3) (news: is at 3.6).

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I don't think that's called a "URI wrapper" - it's a scheme, just like http:, or mailto:, but for news. You can create a news: link for yourself (e.g. <a href="news:mozilla.support.firefox">Firefox support group</a>) and the linked newsgroup will open in your browser (if supported, most modern browsers don't do Usenet), or your Usenet client (e.g., Google Groups, Unison).Technically, you can make up any scheme you want (e.g., Valve made up the steam: one) and write some code so that browsers know what program to pass the value on to.Edit: ooh, I found an RFC describing some (old or common) schemes: RFC 1738 "Uniform Resource Locators (URL)" (section 3) (news: is at 3.6).
Thanks Synook. I'm not that familiar with Usenet I've always pegged it as a bucket of exploits. Blame it on ignorance.

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Usenet is basically a really really old discussion group protocol, before things like HTTP-based forums, and basically used for the same purpose. People did find ways to encode and store binaries using the protocol, however (a bit like filling lots and lots of posts in a thread on this forum with raw binary data, and then calling that thread "program.exe"), and there are programs that can decode them to form the original executable. This too has declined in favor of simpler systems, like FTP and Bittorrent, however.

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Oh I get it, by calling the stored instructions *.exe or whatever recognized extension you trick the users into launching or executing the code. Thank goodness for encryption and digital singing.

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Eh, it doesn't quite work like that, and Usenet was not inherently insecure. It was not particularily known for spreading malware or for any sort of security problems, nor was the protocol especially exploitable.

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Errr Ok then. Thanks man!

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