SuperNZB – Filename Problems

SuperNZB’s Filename Problems window will open when the program is unable to find a filename in an NZB file that it is parsing.

Look at the FileNameProblems.txt file in your SuperNZB folder. (On Windows, you can open this file via the “Open App Data Folder” command on the “Help” menu. On the Mac, this folder is the same one where you put the SuperNZB program.) In the FileNameProblems.txt file, if you can spot the file extension in the subject of a filename listed there, check to see if it is in SuperNZB’s file-types list. If it is not, add it, use the Clear All button on the Queue window, and then re-import the NZB file. Otherwise, keep reading.

In a newsgroup post, there are designated areas for several things such as: the posting date, the poster, the newsgroup, the size of the post, the subject, etc. But there is no place for the name of a file that might be attached to the post. Because of this, the filename is put into the subject, which is an “unstructured field”, and that means that there is no format that the subject must adhere to. So when a program looks in the subject for a filename, it cannot simply pick it out like the date. It has to analyze the subject and try to guess what the filename is. Also, in multi-part files spread over many posts, it must try to figure out what the part number is.

If you stop and think about it, there is literally an infinite number of ways that a poster could come up with to put the filename and part number into the subject. Most posters and posting software are sensible about how they do this, and a program like SuperNZB can usually figure out the filename without too much trouble. However, there are always posters who will do odd, unpredictable things, and sometimes SuperNZB will not be able to figure it out. When this happens, the program will assign a filename and download the file anyway.

You don’t have to worry about the filenames that SuperNZB assigns. In almost all cases, the real filename is stored in the body of the post, and after downloading the post, SuperNZB will extract the correct filename, and then use it in the Queue list and when creating the file. If you want to do this yourself before starting to download, you can click on a file on the Queue window to select it, click the Adjust button, and type in the filename.

When downloading RAR/PAR sets, filenames can become a problem because the unPARing algorithm sometimes has trouble with filenames that contain non-normal characters such as quotes. So, if your PAR software reports that it cannot find a file that you know is there, try monkeying with the filename. Take out spaces, quotes, or anything else that isn’t a simple letter or number.

Further reading: Obfuscated Filenames in NZB Files and Usenet Newsgroups.