NetFetch is designed for use with broadband (eg. ADSL or Cable) and other network-based
internet connections. Its purpose is to provide an easy-to-use interface to the internet,
whilst giving plenty of flexibility to users so that things work just the way you want.
The software makes day-to-day tasks easy for RISC OS internet users, whilst including
a wealth of powerful "back end" software to ensure the latest technologies and protocols
Like many of the best programs, NetFetch was born for our own use. Many customers will, no doubt, be familiar with our DialUp software, which we used ourselves for several years. However, when we moved away from the "modem on each machine" approach, and installed a network-modem, we didn't want to sacrifice the friendliness and ease that DialUp had provided. As such, we created NetFetch originally to be DialUp, but without the Dial! We wanted a single program which would provide access to all the core internet functions - email, news, FTP, telnet, the web - which could be set to work easily and effectively.
Of course, NetFetch has developed a long way since its internal beginnings! With the dialling removed, NetFetch is in some ways a simpler program than DialUp, but we have made it more flexible in terms of how it works. For example, you can tailor the behaviour of different mouse clicks on the NetFetch icon, to make it behave how you want, and periodic mail/news fetching and sending have been enhanced as they make much more sense with "always on" internet connections. Other examples of unique NetFetch features include a selection of more "minimalist" user interface skins, and the ability to remember previous mail servers, offering a menu to switch quickly between settings.
NetFetch retains all of DialUp's best features, of course, including easy configuration
via standard .ins internet provider files, global clipboard, easy-to-understand
windows/menus and fast performance. It also implements all the expected desktop
protocols that DialUp and various web browsers established, making sure that your
broadband internet connection complies with the myriad RISC OS standards and protocols.
Taking a moment to stop and look at NetFetch's name, the "Net" part clearly
refers to the fact that it is designed for NETwork/broadband interNET connections,
but what about the "Fetch" part? On RISC OS computers (and also many Linux/Unix systems),
email/news programs such as our Messenger Pro, don't actually fetch and send mails,
because there are many protocols which can be used for that. Instead, Messenger (or
other RISC OS email programs like Pluto) expect other applications to implement the
fetching/sending of email/news. Whilst this division of labour is eminently sensible,
it can potentially lead to lots of extra setup and complexity for the user. Having to
run lots of separate programs becomes clumsy and looks messy. That's what the "Fetch"
refers to - NetFetch includes comprehensive fetching/sending facilities for email, news
and RSS feeds, and is powered by our highly regarded Hermes software (see below).
NetFetch also addresses the clumsiness/messiness which can affect RISC OS internet
access, by providing a single iconbar icon from which every operation can be controlled,
managed and run, making things much more professional and straightforward.
Of course, there will be people saying that NetFetch is unnecessary, but no other
RISC OS internet program provides anything like the level of functionality,
integration, support for modern protocols and standards or support. Indeed, most
people who say "ah, but you could try pd software..." choose to use
One RISC OS dealer had this to say about NetFetch:
I must say the latest update on Netfetch with the spam filtering is working very very well. For me this was the best upgrade ever !!
... Netfetch's selection eliminates 95% on the POP box ...
Thanks once more !
Recent versions of NetFetch include additional software to allow it to function as
an affordable "Internet Suite". For example, a basic (but fully functional) version
of Messenger is included to read/write email. CD editions are even more exstensive
including web browsers and other software.
At its heart, Hermes implements POP3 mail fetching, SMTP mail sending and RSS newsfeed
fetching, alongside anti-spam measures and priority fetching of friends/family email,
whilst including a raft of different security measures that different internet providers
and services use to protect your data.
Important Hermes features include:
We have had several requests as to whether Hermes is available separately. Although it is perfectly possible to use Hermes standalone, most users agree that the combination of NetFetch+Hermes or DialUp+Hermes gives the best possible results. As such, we don't offer Hermes separately as it is considered to be an integral part of DialUp or NetFetch, and the cost of Hermes development is what you are paying for when you order one of those products.