Ubuntu / Linux news and application reviews.


Newsbeuter is an open source command line feed reader for Linux, FreeBSD, Mac OS X and other Unix-like operating systems, which I really like. CenterIM also had a RSS feed reader, but I find Newsbeuter to be much better (although, for a IM client, CenterIM is awesome).

Here are a few of Newsbeuter features:
  • Subscribe to RSS 0.9x, 1.0, 2.0 and Atom feeds
  • Download podcasts
  • Freely configure your keyboard shortcuts
  • Search through all downloaded articles
  • Categorize and query your subscriptions with a flexible tag system
  • Integrate any data source through a flexible filter and plugin system
  • Automatically remove unwanted articles through a "killfile"
  • Define "meta feeds" using a powerful query language
  • Synchronize newsbeuter with your bloglines.com account
  • Import and exporting your subscriptions with the widely used OPML format
  • Freely define newsbeuter's look'n'feel through free color configurability and format strings

Here is a small video I've just recorded with Newsbeuter in action:

Installing and using Newsbeuter

Newsbeuter should be available in most Linux distribution repositories. Ubuntu users: Newsbeuter is available in the official repo, but not the latest version so if you want all the latest features, here is how to compile it (very easy - tested on Ubuntu Karmic Koala):

1. Install the packages needed for compiling (and Lynx as a browser):

sudo apt-get install libsqlite3-dev libstfl-dev libcurl4-gnutls-dev pkg-config libxml2-dev lynx checkinstall

2. Compile it:

Download Newsbeuter latest version and extract it, navigate to the folder where you extracted and:

sudo checkinstall --fstrans=no --install=yes --pkgname=newsbeuter --pkgversion "2:2.1-12ubuntu3" --default

As always, I prefer checkinstall to make install, so that a .deb package is installed for easier removal / update later on. You can, however, use "sudo make install" instead of checkinstall!

3. Using it

Before running Newsbeuter, add some feeds to it's configuration file or import an OPML file (from Google Reader or Bloglines for example):

a) manually enter feeds -> run this in a terminal:
sudo gedit ~/.newsbeuter/urls

and enter the feeds you want.

b) import an OPML file -> run this in a terminal:
newsbeuter -i /path/to/subscriptions.xml

entering the path to your OPML file in the above command.

Now you can start Newsbeuter:

a) running "newsbeuter" in a terminal window will start the application, but you will have to press "r" for every subscription you wish to refresh / get the latest news

b) running "newsbeuter -r" in a terminal will refresh all the RSS feeds after you start newsbeuter.

For more info on using Newsbeuter, type:
newsbeuter -h

and for help using it, press "h" while running Newsbeuter.