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Agent's Guide to Binaries

What is a Binary?

On Usenet the term, "binaries", refers to file attachments.

Think of it like email -- there are "text" messages and "binary" attachments such as pictures, videos and audio files. The difference is that Usenet messages are small, so a "binary" attachment is typically posted across multiple Usenet messages.


Agent was the first newsreader to join these "multi-part" messages into a single "binary" message so users could post, download and preview pictures whose sizes were measured in megabytes (Mb).

To learn more, watch the Agent Tutorial on Pictures.


Over time, users wanted to post videos whose sizes were measured in gigabytes (Gb). So videos were "split" into smaller files using programs such as WinRAR and HJ-Split. On Usenet, this process is called "archiving".

For example, a 1Gb video might be archived into 100 individual RAR files (or segments). When posted, each RAR file might be spread across 50 separate Usenet messages. That's abbout 5000 Usenet headers (or messages) for a 1Gb video archive!

To learn more, watch the Agent Tutorial on Videos.


Unfortunately, if a single byte in any message was damaged, the video is useless. So users began posting PAR (or parity) files which can be used to repair damaged RAR files. Suddenly binary Usenet was getting very complex -- especially for new users.

So we designed a feature called MegaJoin - which automatically downloads, combines and repairs all the messages for you. We even added a Preview Archive feature so you could sample a small portion of the video without downloading the entire archive.

Watch this video to see MegaJoin and Preview Archive in action ↓

What is an NZB?

An NZB is a tiny file that contains a list of Usenet message headers. As an alternative to retrieving a large number of headers from a news server, you can import just a few headers from an NZB file.

An NZB typically contains all the headers for all the files that make up a single video archive. For example:

  • The headers for a large video archive that was split with RAR.
  • The header for an NFO text file that describes the video.
  • The headers for JPG pictures that are screen shots for the video.
  • The headers for PAR files to repair the video if damaged.

NZB in Action

Sound complicated? It's not. Watch this video to see how Agent makes it easy and fun to use NZB files ↓

NZB Index Sites

These sites allow you to search for content on Usenet. Some are free, while others charge a small fee. We've listed some sites here, but to find others use a web search engine, searching for "NZB Search". Each of these sites lets you download small NZB files, which Agent will use to download, join and repair a large binary file:

Posting Binaries

Agent is great at posting small binaries like individual pictures. However, posting larger binaries requires specialized software. The following sites provide information and software to help you post large binary files:

  • WinRAR - a program to split large binaries into RAR segments
  • HJ-Split - a program to to split large binaries into SPLIT segments
  • QuickPar - a program for creating PAR files
  • Camelsystem Power-Post - a great free binary posting program