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Agent 7.0 Release Notes


IMPORTANT: Agent 7.0 is not compatible with previous version of Agent. Please make sure that you back up your Agent data before installing and running Agent 7.0.

Bigger Article Numbers

The number of messages available on Usenet has grown rapidly over the past few years. Some news services now offer newsgroups with article numbers larger than the 32-bit (4GB) values Agent could handle. Agent now stores 64-bit article numbers, which should keep everyone happy for the next millenium.

This change will eliminate problems such as missing message bodies, incorrect sampling values and other unpredictable behavior when getting headers and bodies.

Retrieval by Message-ID

A message body can be retrieved using its article number or its Message-ID. Prior to version 7.0 the default for Agent was to retrieve by article number and revert to using the Message-ID if that failed. With this release we have changed the default to always retrieve by Message-ID. We made this change because retrieval by Message-ID is now generally faster and more reliable.

We also added the Request message bodies by Message-ID option to the Advanced News Server Settings dialog, which you can uncheck if you want to revert to the old behavior.

Improved Saving of Attachments

Previously, when Agent detected an error in a binary attachment, its default action was to save the attachment but also keep a copy of the file in the message stored in Agent's folder. This behavior had two problems. First, it could cause a folder to fill up if it contained a large number of messages with damaged attachments. Second, in anticipation of possibly having to retain the attachment data, Agent would simultaneously stream the attachment to both a file and to the folder. This made saving attachments slower, and it caused undue disk fragmentation.

Because of these problems, we have changed the default to Save and remove from message. This, together with the default option After saving an attachment, remove it from the message should improve performance and help prevent Agent's folders from filling up.

We also found that Agent was being too aggressive in flagging errors in certain yEnc-encoded attachments. This, together with the behavior described above, could cause Agent to save large numbers of attachments in its folders even when the attachments were not damaged.

To upgrade users to the new functionality, if for any folder property (Default, Scheme, or Per-Folder) the attachment setting After saving an attachment, remove it from the message is checked and the error action is Save and leave in message, Agent automatically changes the error action to Save and remove from message.

Improved Connectivity with SMTP (Outbound Email) Servers

Port 587 is the standard port for authenticated login by client email programs and many SMTP servers now refuse authenticated login on the standard port 25. We've heard from users whose SMTP connections simply stopped working because of this. In version 7.0 we have changed the options available on the Servers and Accounts, Outbound Email Server panel and updated the help file for that panel to describe the options and suggest which one is appropriate for your use. When you edit this panel Agent automatically sets values that make your selections correct and consistent.

Problems Fixed

  • In some cases Agent was corrupting text file attachments, such as PDF files. This happened because Agent tried to perform character set conversions on the files. Now, Agent performs no character set conversion of inbound or outbound attachments.
  • Entire lines were missing in some messages that use multi-byte characters.
  • Using crash dump data provided by our users, we fixed a number of errors that caused Agent to terminate abnormally.

Learn More

Go here for All Release Notes.