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CITA RSS Aggregator news

Software updates and news for users of the CITA RSS Aggregator.

Last Build Date: Mon, 22 Oct 2007 21:35:24 GMT

Copyright: Copyright: © Constructive IT Advice Ltd. All rights reserved

News from the Weather Channel

Mon, 17 Oct 2011 22:49:30 GMT

I've just been notified that the Weather Channel - which provides the weather feed used in the CITA RSS Aggregator - is stopping its service at the end of the month. It is starting a new service that will require a subscription.

I will look for an alternative, free feed but it's unlikely that I will be able to do much in the available time.


Andy Henderson
Constructive IT Advice

Integrating the Aggregator with the Ten Foot BitTorrent client

Mon, 22 Oct 2007 21:34:55 GMT

In addition to the CITA RSS Aggregator, Constructive IT Advice publishes a set of Ten Foot Products. These are designed to be viewed on a Television connected to a Media Centre PC and operated by just a remote. These include a BitTorrent client.

The next version of the Aggregator will detect the presence of the Ten Foot BitTorrent client automatically. In the mean time, you can connect the two by entering the following in the 'BitTorrent command' box of the 'General settings' page:

"C:\Program Files\CITA\Ten Foot Products\TFBT.exe" &1

This will run the TFBT program with the address of each new torrent file. TFBT copies the torrent file to the client's Torrents folder and runs the client if it is not already running.

Newsflash: CITA RSS Aggregator version 2.7

Fri, 13 Jul 2007 13:41:49 GMT

Version 2.7 incorporates the changes from the beta versions provided in the forum plus some additional features. It provides the following improvements over version 2.6: The Aggregator automatically switches the font used in most displays to Segoe UI - the primary Vista font - if it detects it is running under Vista. The first time you run the Aggregator under Vista it will offer to switch the alert styles to a profile specially designed for use with Vista. You can see examples of the alerts here. The Aggregator gives you options to: apply the profile see samples of the new alerts keep alerts as they are defer the decision to later. If you decide to apply the new profile, you can use the options window to tune the supplied styles to your preference. You can now specify that alerts should appear indented from the edge of the screen rather than be shown flush with it. Alerts shown under Vista appear with a resizable border. You can drag them out of the way if you want to. You can opt to not show the resizable border when using Vista if you prefer the existing border style. When using the options window to change colours, you can now use the full palette of colours available on your PC. We relaxed the validity tests in the Aggregator so that - although it is required by the specification - the Aggregator processes feeds that are missing the channel's 'link' element. You can use new fields in the Aggregator's general settings (click Tools, Options from the main window) to set a download time period. The Aggregator will start downloads only between the times you specify. The default setting is 'No time limit'. The downloads summary has been updated so it shows you the time a download is due to start if it is being held back only by your specified time interval. Refreshing the download screen now takes significantly less time than before. When you right-click a channel in the tree view, the Aggregator provides an option that immediately updates the feed. This option no longer implements measures to minimise data transfer. That's so the Aggregator can recognise when some feed problems have been corrected. For example, a wireless hotspot returning a log in screen in response to a feed request will cause the red 'Stop' flag to appear; previously this error indication could persist until the feed changed. You can now clear this kind of error using the 'Update now' option. You don't have to do this, however. The 'Stop' flag will disappear automatically the next time the feed is updated. If you decided not to use the Aggregator's internal (Internet Explorer) browser in previous versions, you sacrificed the ability to automatically track items as you read them. Automatic tracking is now implemented for both browser options. We have made cosmetic changes to some of the menus shown when right-clicking channels and items to make them easier to understand. We fixed an obscure bug that can cause the Aggregator to crash when closing the Main window. This version corrects a bug that caused the Aggregator to crash when you went to the settings window having logged on without a user id to Windows 95 or 98. We have also modified the way the Aggregator interacts with the Subscription utility to reduce the risk of a programming loop. If you downloaded the beta version of this release, it is still worth downloading the full version because it contains some subsequent enhancements and the help text matches the screen changes. If you are unsure which version of the Aggregator you are using: click the Aggregator icon in your system tray to open the main window, and click 'Help', 'About RSS Aggregator'. You will see a window that shows you the Aggregator version number.[...]

Removing adverts from some popular RSS channels (updated)

Mon, 06 Jun 2005 08:57:34 GMT

Version 2.0 and later of the CITA RSS Aggregator includes an advert removal tool.

This note explains how to remove adverts from some popular channels. If you use one or more of these feeds then:
  1. Install the latest version of the Aggregator (click here for details).
  2. Open the main Aggregator window by clicking the 'RSS' icon in the system tray.
  3. Click menu options: 'Tools' and then 'Options' to display the RSS Aggregator Settings window.
  4. Click the 'Channel settings' tab and highlight the channel at the left of the screen (if you need more space you can resize the window by dragging it's corners and you can drag the right hand edge of the channel list to give it more room).
  5. Click the 'Advert removal' tab and enter the text from the table below.
  6. Click 'Save and exit' to save your change.
This table provides the advert removal text for some popular channels:
Changes shown in red

Channel Advert removal text



Boing Boing   

The Engadget family has changed its advertising again. Different members of the family seem to be using different schemes so, if you use a different member of the family you might need to experiment with the variations shown above.

If you want to remove adverts from a channel that is not listed here, you can find out how to create your own advert removal text from the Aggregator's help text. If, having read the help text, you are still unsure what text to specify,
let us know which channel you are using and we'll help if we can.

Support for short refresh intervals in the CITA RSS Aggregator.

Fri, 01 Jul 2005 10:24:47 GMT

The CITA RSS Aggregator allows us to override the minimum refresh rate of one hour for specific feeds.

This article contains details that the Aggregator can read and use to adjust refresh intervals for individual feeds. If you encounter a feed that invites shorter refresh rates, let us know and we will update the Aggregator through this feed automatically.

Page updated to include the Gmail internal address of

For the time being we have reduced the minimum refresh rate of the Google Gmail feed ( to five minutes. 5 5

Work-around for a possible feed problem
When you add a feed to the Aggregator you might see the following error message:

The underlying connection was closed: The server committed an HTTP protocol violation.

This is because Microsoft's .net software is very rigorous about how web pages are presented and some servers are a little lax about observing the rules. If you encounter the problem you can fix it by adding a file called RSSAggregator.exe.config to the Aggregator's program directory (by default C:\Program Files\CITA\RSS Aggregator) containing the following:

Unfortunately we cannot fix this problem with a program correction at present.

You can read more about the problem and its solution here. If you encounter the problem, sorry for the inconvenience caused. We suggest you contact the feed author to let them know because it is really their server that is causing the problem.

Welcome from Constructive IT Advice

Your copy of the RSS Aggregator is installed and working.

To find out how to get the most from the product, click 'Help' in the menu bar and 'Getting started'.

Note that the Aggregator is provided with extensive help text. To get help with any screen simply press your F1 key. You can also get to the help text by clicking 'Help' in the menu bar and one of:
  • Contents: provides a table of contents to the help information
  • Index: provides an index to the hep text entries, useful if you need help on a particular topic or activity
  • Search: allows you to search the help text for individual words or phrases.