Provided by: cnews_cr.g7-40.4_i386 bug


        newsoverview - netnews overview files




        Each  newsgroup directory contains a file named ‘.overview’, containing
        one-line summaries of articles in that group.  Fields are separated  by
        tabs,  and  any  tabs or newlines in the original articles headers have
        been replaced with spaces.  The fields are, in order:
        1. article number (file name)
        2. subject
        3. author
        4. date
        5. message-id
        6. references
        7. byte count
        8. line count
           optionally other headers, as arranged locally (none are supplied  by
           the database maintenance software, as shipped).
        The  line-count  and  references  fields may be empty.  If the optional
        other headers are present, they include their header keyword and colon;
        if  they  are  absent  entirely, the tab after the line-count field may
        also be absent.
        The file is maintained in numerical order, by article number.
        At the time of writing (late 1992), the lines in an overview  file  are
        typically 150-300 characters long, and an overview file for a typically
        busy group is often 30,000 bytes to 60,000  bytes  long,  with  notable
        exceptions exceeding 500,000 bytes.


        A  few  lines  from  one  overview file, with tabs displayed as ‘│’ and
        lines continued after ‘\’.
               8870     strange message id     s: <something>QUIT (John Schmitz)\
                    18 Sep 1992 19:57:16 GMT     <>          821     
               8871     Re: BNF rule for newsgroup names? (Kristian Koehntopp)\
                    Fri, 18 Sep 1992 17:51:09 GMT     <>\
                    <> <>\
                <> <339@blars.UUCP>     926          Supersedes: <1234@foovax>




        Written by Geoff Collyer as part of the C News project.


        The contents of the line-count field should not  be  believed  and  are
        really pretty worthless yet popular.
        There  is  some  confusion  about  whether the order and content of the
        first eight fields is a local decision, or a standard.   It’s  intended
        to  be  a standard; please do not mess with it.  All, repeat all, local
        variations should be done by adding the optional fields at the end, and
        those  fields  must  include their header keywords (and colons) to make
        them self-identifying.
                                   28 Aug 1994                NEWSOVERVIEW(5cn)