To take advantage of Usenet (opens in new tab), you need a Usenet service provider. Newshosting (opens in new tab) has become one of the best Usenet providers (opens in new tab) available today, chiefly thanks to its competitive pricing and industry-leading retention rate (how long files are kept on the server before deletion). In our Newshosting review, we look at what makes it stand out from the rest of the pack.
For users who download many files, Usenet is a popular alternative to torrenting because the speeds are faster, it’s arguably more anonymous, and files are often available for longer. Usenet’s discussion threads can also be used for advertising, marketing, and building business partnerships.
Newshosting: Plans and pricing
Newshosting offers three plans. The Lite plan must be paid monthly, but the Unlimited and XL Powerpack plans also have six-month and one-year options that include a discount of up to 21% on the monthly fees. With the Lite plan, you can only download 50GB a month, though your unused data will roll over to the next month.
A VPN (opens in new tab) costs an additional $4.99 on the Lite and Unlimited plans, whereas it’s included as standard on the XL Powerpack plan. So, if you do need a VPN, the XL Powerpack plan is undoubtedly the best value.
All plans offer a 14-day or 30GB trial, whichever comes first.
|Price per month||$10||$14.95*||$19.95*|
* When paid monthly
** You get more connections when you pay annually
When choosing between Usenet providers, the retention rate is an important statistic. It refers to how long files are kept on the Usenet server before being purged. A long retention rate means you’re more likely to be able to find older content.
Newshosting boasts a 4,909-day retention rate, so anything that’s uploaded to the 125,000+ newsgroups will be archived for over 13 years. This is the best in the industry.
Newshosting: Key features and highlights
The exact speeds you’ll get from Newshosting will depend on your location, internet connection, and whether you use a VPN. The max speed that you can get from Newshosting is a blistering 1GB a second.
In our real-world test, we were able to download a five-year-old Kali Linux ISO at a consistent 85Mbps, essentially maxing out our internet connection even when the VPN was engaged. Users sometimes report occasional slowdowns, but these are quickly rectified.
No single Usenet provider has a complete copy of all the files uploaded to Usenet. Many users choose both a primary provider like Newshosting and a second pay-as-you-go backup for filling in their main provider’s file availability gaps.
Completion rate refers to the percentage of content that a provider has. Newshosting states that it has a 99.99%+ completion rate, which is quite high. This means missing files should be a rare occurrence.
Newshosting: Interface and in-use
Newshosting comes with free client software for Windows, macOS, or Linux. Installation is straightforward, though it sometimes takes around 30 minutes for your account to be activated so you can use Newshosting.
You can browse through newsgroups by choosing them from the list or search for content using the powerful search. Searches can be filtered into categories like videos, audio, and software.
The interface can display graphs for your current speed, NNTP activity, and messages from Newshosting regarding your account. Overall, the interface might not win any design awards, but it’s certainly a convenient way to browse content available on Usenet.
Of course, if you prefer to use alternative Usenet clients, like SABnzbd (opens in new tab), Newshosting supports them.
Newshosting has an introductory support section with around 30 FAQs that cover the basics of the service and how to set it up to work with software like Grabit (opens in new tab), Newsleecher (opens in new tab), NZBGet (opens in new tab), and SABnzbd. A practical Newshosting Newsreader QuickStart Guide shows new users how to get started with the software.
You’ll also find a Learning Center that offers the bare minimum advice on getting started with Usenet in general. Human support is through a basic ticket system. It’d be nice to see a live chat function for faster resolution of simple queries.
Choose the optional VPN from Newshosting, and you get a secondary subscription to VPN provider PrivadoVPN (opens in new tab), which has its own client for Windows, Mac, and mobile devices. You get a separate login and password for PrivadoVPN, and you need to remember to start the VPN software before using Newshosting if you want your internet traffic to be encrypted.
PrivadoVPN has servers in 46 countries. The company is based in Switzerland, which has one of the strongest consumer privacy laws worldwide. Some logging is kept, but nothing that could be used to connect activity to an individual user, according to the provider.
The software includes an automatic kill switch that stops all network activity if the VPN connection fails for any reason, potentially preventing information on your online activities from leaking to your ISP. You have the choice to connect via OpenVPN, IKEv2, or WireGuard protocol, enabling you to balance the speed and security of your connection.
Alternatives to Newshosting
UsenetServer (opens in new tab) is a popular Usenet provider that offers services similar to Newshosting. This is undoubtedly because they both share the same parent company, Omicron Media, a multinational company that owns many of the biggest Usenet providers operating today. You may prefer UsenetServer over Newshosting because it bundles in a great Usenet client as part of the deal and offers slightly more connections.
We can also recommend Tweaknews (opens in new tab). It’s competitively priced and has the option to pay only for the data that you use. This makes it a great backup server for finding the file parts missing from your main provider’s servers.
Newshosting: Final verdict
Newshosting is a top choice for your primary Usenet provider. The service is fast, the completion rate is good, and the retention is outstanding. Newshosting’s free desktop client is powerful without being unwieldy, and the optional VPN has enough features to become your go-to for all online encryption needs.
Newshosting doesn’t offer too much support or new user hand-holding, but the installation and setup of the software are straightforward. Overall, it’s an excellent Usenet provider at a top price.
Further reading on Usenet
When it comes to Usenet, it's best to learn as much as possible before you dive in. Find out what Usenet groups are (opens in new tab) and what Usenet newsgroups (opens in new tab) cover; learn what Google Groups is (opens in new tab) and how to access Usenet with it; discover the best Usenet newsgroup readers (opens in new tab); and learn how to download from Usenet (opens in new tab), as well as how to access Usenet for free (opens in new tab).