Downloading through Usenet has been on rise, primarily due to the advantages it offers: speed, convenience, and privacy. A testimony to this is that my recent posts on how to get a free Usenet account and how to install CouchPotato have received increasing number of hits since their publication. For Usenet access, one needs an account with one of the many Usenet providers. With so many use Usenet providers such as Astraweb competing for the growing market, consumers (like us) often find ourselves confused as to which service to choose. Furthermore, free Usenet servers are hard to find and if found only allow reduced speed. If you do not like installing and configuring Usenet Newsgrabber clients such as SABnzbd and Unzbin (both free NZB downloaders), you may be in luck. UsenetStorm.com, a web Usenet provider, offers a novel and unique way of downloading NZBs.
UsenetStorm Web Usenet Provider
UsenetStorm gives you FREE unlimited access to Usenet, straight through your web browser. No more need to configure tricky news reader software. Submit the URL to the NZB file you would like to download and UsenetStorm will download it for you. When the download is complete, you will receive a link to a zip file that you can download as you would download any normal file, thus eliminating the need for a newsgrabber software or another Usenet service provider.
Free NZB Downloader
Free download does not require you to setup an account. A free account may be suitable for you if your needs fit within the following features:
- Maximum NZB file size 500mb
- Only 1 Thread per download
- Download speeds up to 5mbps
- 1gb per day network transfer limit
- “Best available” bandwidth
- Files get deleted after 24 hours
To download a a file, you will first have to grab the URL of the NZB file and enter it or upload the NZB file using the “Choose a File” button. As soon as you submit, the UsenetStorm’s server takes over and downloads the contents of the NZB file.
After the download is complete, you will be given a link to download the zip file, which you can download as you would download any normal file:
Premium Plans and Pricing
If the free account does not fit your needs, then you may choose from the different levels of paid premium accounts that UsenetStorm offers (shown below in the table). Download procedure is the same as above.
Traditional newsgrabber clients such as SABnzbd and Unzbin offer several features: No download limits (however your Usenet provider may have limits and costs), auto extractions, categorization, renaming, duplication checking, and moving of downloaded files, RSS support, and several other features. However, they do require installation and configuration as well as a Usenet service provider such as Astraweb.
UsenetStorm, on the other hand, is a unique and interesting way of downloading NZB files. UsenetStorm downloads your NZBs and offers the contents to you as a zip file that can be downloaded almost anywhere. The download speeds are great. In my test, UsenetStorm grabbed a 372 MB file in just 5-7 seconds. I could then download the zip file at around 1.6 MB/s (the max my ISP offers):
After the download, however, you are now responsible for extracting, moving, renaming, duplication checking, and categorizing the contents. This can be a hassle if you are looking for a completely automated home theater system.
If you do not like to tinker with newsgrabbers then you might want to consider UsenetStorm. It can also be handy in restricted environments/networks were one is unable to run any newsgrabber softwares or limited to downloading only certain types of files.
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