Download media files from newsgroups in full privacy.

What is Usenet?

Simply put, Usenet is a way to download files online.

However, unlike torrents, the files you download are from a single server rather than from thousands or hundreds of torrent users.

This means Usenet is faster and more private than torrents as you don’t share your IP address with anyone other than the Usenet provider who controls the news server you download from.

Find out why downloading from Usenet is making a big comeback and how you can get in on the action. For more Usenet FAQs, keep scrolling down.

Quick Answer: Top 3 Usenet Providers







Newshosting best overall usenet provider

• Best quality Usenet
• Best retention
• Fastest speeds

• Free newsreader with search


save 70%

Get 3 FREE months


• Independent servers
• High retention & completion
• Free newsreader with search


save 27%

Try risk-free for 7 days


UsenetServer fastest usenet provider

• High speed access
• Unlimited downloads
• Great value


save 60%

Try risk-free for 14 days

Featured Usenet Posts

How to Use Usenet: An Easy Guide for Getting Started (Updated)
The complete set of steps for how to use Usenet. From how to sign-up and download to block accounts and[...]
Best European Usenet (No DMCA)
Looking for the best European Usenet provider with news servers in the EU? Looking for the best European Usenet provider? Our post,[...]
Best Usenet Provider 2024 (Updated)
These Usenet providers give you access to lots of uncensored newsgroups at a good price and fast download speeds with[...]

How Do I Download Files from Usenet?

To download files from Usenet, you only need a Usenet provider and free newsreader download software.

To get the most out of Usenet though, you should also use an indexer which allows you to search and download NZB files. NZB files and NZB search engines are the Usenet equivalent to torrent files and torrent search engines.

NZBs allow you to locate and download files as quickly and easily as torrents (read more about Usenet vs torrents).

In fact, a lot of people use both torrents and Usenet.

Reddit is full of people who trumpet using Usenet to automatically download new releases but who also download torrents anonymously (with a VPN) to fill any gaps in their content libraries.

Is Usenet Free?

Although it is possible to access Usenet for free, the best experience is available by paying for a subscription from a premium Usenet provider.

Most people will benefit from a classic unlimited monthly Usenet subscription plan, but different types of Usenet accounts are available, including pay-as-you-go type block accounts.

Some Usenet providers even let you share your account with a friend. 🙂

Is Usenet Legal?

The technology behind Usenet is absolutely legal. You cannot get in trouble simply for having Usenet newsreader software on your computer.

But as with torrents, streaming and even downloading from the web, what you download using Usenet is your responsibility. If you use any of these Internet tools/protocols to download copyright files, that's technically a no-no.

To prevent this risk - for example, in case you downloaded something like that by accident - choose Usenet providers that don’t keep logs of your downloads.

Is Usenet Safe to Use?

Also, Usenet is very safe and virtually an anonymous way to download files, especially if you follow a few key privacy tips for Usenet.

For ultimate privacy & anonymity on Usenet, you can pay with Bitcoin for a few Usenet providers which keeps your identity completely undisclosed even from the Usenet provider.

It’s even possible to download Usenet files completely in the cloud (check out cloud Usenet services).

Plus, it’s also good to you follow the famous first rule of Usenet: don’t talk about it!

Can I Try Before I Buy?

There are plenty of Usenet providers to choose from and most of them let you try them for a free trial period of 3 to 14 days to make sure you like using the service.

Which Usenet Provider Should I Use?

The quality of your Usenet experience will depend on the Usenet provider’s:

Which Newsreader Software Should I Use?

The newsreader software you use is not so important, but there are a few differences.

Your choices include:

  • a classic newsreader which lets you download files in posts from newsgroups manually
  • a web-based Usenet interface (easiest and best for images & videos)
  • another web-like Interface called Spotnet, or
  • the favorite these days, a downloader that runs in the background like NZBGet or sabnzbd

Which Usenet Indexer Should I Use?

Usenet Indexers come in all shapes and sizes.

We'd recommend that you start by using some free indexers to gain some experience and then consider a paid indexer for better quality results, including for obfuscated files (cloaked files).

Our table let's you easily compare all Usenet indexers and see what they have to offer, including which ones are open vs invite-only and free vs paid & more.

How Does Usenet Work?

The files you download are contained in posts which are themselves organized into newsgroups (read more about how Usenet is organized).

There are over 100,000 newsgroups, covering every possible topic you can think of.

Originally, the posts in newsgroups were mostly text-only newsgroup discussions much like you see in Reddit today.

Now, however, posts contain files as big as those available as torrents whether video, audio or image.

Which Newsgroups Should I Look At?

The specific newsgroups carried by a Usenet provider are usually not public, but a few let you browse and search their full newsgroup lists so you can see which ones they carry.

While some specific newsgroups are more likely to have the files you’re looking for than others, this is only important if you are manually downloading files.

If you are using the modern NZB methods mentioned above, this is not so important.

In fact, many files are now spread out over many posts in many different groups and may even be “obfuscated” (hidden) for maximum privacy and longevity.

Is Usenet Easy to Use?

Admittedly, the learning curve for mastering Usenet is harder than for torrents.

However, once you get the hang of it, people love Usenet!

In fact, you can even completely automate Usenet downloading with popular free tools such as Radarr, Sonarr and Plex.

Start Downloading Files from Newsgroups

Usenet may be over 30 years old, but it has survived this long because it continues to evolve.

Join in now!

Below, our Usenet-related posts are organized into convenient post grids for you.

You can also always make use of the search bar. If on mobile, use your browser bar to simply type in what you’re looking for and add the word COGIPAS to your search. 🙂

Usenet Guides

Learn all about Usenet and how to download media files of all kinds from uncensored newsgroups.

Usenet Basics / Newsgroups 101

Accessing Usenet

Usenet Reviews

Our unbiased reviews of today’s top Usenet providers and indexers will help you choose the right one for you, and at the best prices too.

Reviews of Popular Usenet Providers

Our unbiased reviews of today’s top Usenet providers and indexers will help you choose the right one for you, and at the best prices too.

There are dozens of Usenet providers offering newsgroup access these days. If you want to research them yourself, we have the data on all of them. But it would take you weeks, if not months, to do that, so check our recommended Usenet providers.

Reviews of Usenet Indexers / NZB Sites

Reviews of Other Usenet Providers

Learn Even More about Usenet

Newest Usenet Posts

Advanced Usenet Guides

Usenet News & FYI

August 2, 2022