Server Options - Maybe a wrong label?

Technical support and discussion of Newsbin Version 6 series.

Server Options - Maybe a wrong label?

Postby Calahan » Mon Nov 28, 2022 8:28 am

Hello,

the setting "Enable XFeatures" under "Server Options..". -> "Really Advanced" seems to disable the XFeatures.
If I select the option, header download speed drops down to approx. 10%.
In an old version (help document for V6.00) it's labeled "Disable XFeatures".
So maybe it's wrong labeled?

Using Newsbin Pro 6.90 - Build: 5524.

All the best,
Calahan
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Re: Server Options - Maybe a wrong label?

Postby Quade » Mon Nov 28, 2022 10:31 am

At one point XFeatures was defaulted to "on" but it caused problems with some servers that didn't handle it properly so it's now defaulted to "off".

I verified that checking the box sets the option to "1" in the NBI. Unchecking it sets it back to zero.

"XFEATURE COMPRESS GZIP"

With "Show Server Commands" set you should see this when it connects to the server and xfeatures is enabled. The setting is read during the connection stage so, changing it while connected won't change the state until the connections are closed and re-opened.

As to whether it actually improves performance anymore, I can't say. It's a feature that never made it into the official usenet protocol. There's no promises about compression ratio these days either. I mean you could implement it but not actually do any compression or set the compression really low. The two servers that both implemented it that I know of, aren't particularly good servers anymore.
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Re: Server Options - Maybe a wrong label?

Postby Calahan » Tue Nov 29, 2022 7:09 am

Thanks for the info. Seems the "DisableXFeatures" property isn't used anymore in the nbi file, so I deleted it.

XFeatures were enabled in my configuration all the time, because I thought it would compress the headers before download.
I got the following message in the debug log: "HIGH Newshosting None xfeature useragent Newsbin Pro 6.90|290 feature enabled"
No message with "XFEATURE COMPRESS GZIP"

I now unchecked the property and my header downloads are about 10 times faster now. :)
So it seems that Newshosting doesn't like the enabled XFeatures.

Thanks for helping.
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Re: Server Options - Maybe a wrong label?

Postby Quade » Tue Nov 29, 2022 12:03 pm

Part of changing the default was changing the name of the option in the NBI. It's how I can make sure prior settings don't matter to the new mode.

So you're right, that option no longer exists with that name.

Keep in mind the reported speed and the actual effective speed might not be the same. Properly implemented, you get 10 times as much data for the same bandwidth so, even if the reported download speed is slower, you might still be pulling 9-10 times as much data/s at that lower reported bandwidth.

The only way to really tell might be to try back to back with "Use Download Age" of maybe a month then time the actual download time. If the "Use XFeatures" download time is significantly faster, I'd use it. It means the compression is reducing the total amount of data going over the wire.
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Re: Server Options - Maybe a wrong label?

Postby Calahan » Thu Dec 01, 2022 7:11 pm

In my last post I wrote, that I didn't found the "XFEATURE COMPRESS GZIP" message in the log.
I now found the reason. I didn't activate "Show Server Commands" in the network setting.

I made some testing with and without activated XFeatures. It seems there is no great difference.
Speed seems to be a little faster with disabled XFeatures as long as the internet speed is high enough.
On a 100 mbit or slower connection, turn on XFeatures would definitely help.
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