How to Set Up SBBS for Fidonet

After doing a lot of hunting I finally came across this guide and am putting it here for posterity. I did switch from Argus to Radius (an Argus Clone) and went through this guide exactly as spelled out and it’s working perfectly. Waiting now for a message back from the NC with a node number. The original guide can be found here

Updated 12/29/12 – I have also updated the bottom of the post a couple of items if you are in a multi-network situation.


Synchronet Setup For FidoNet

(Windows XP)



By Dantin Hart of Rat’s Nest BBS 9/22/05
Updated by Lord Time of Time Warp of the Future BBS 12/15/08 (on the links and e-mail)

Also Updated by Richard Miles of Shadowscope on 11/14/12

Okay heres the deal, you need to download 2 files required to get your Synchronet
BBS running with FidoNet and they can be obtained through your Hub’s Coordinator,

File names are BACKBONE and nodelist. As was explained to me by Rob Swindel the

author of Synchronet BBS. BACKBONE.NA is the North American BACKBONE FILE.

Make sure to contact your coordinator for the appropriate File Extension and or File.

Also you may talk to your coordinator about getting the current nodelist.%%% <- extension

is a number which changes with every release.

This is Here is one file called (North America Conference List)

this has the full list of conferences for Zone 1. Next Pic->

Okay to get here you need to bring up your Synchronet Control Panel. Click on

BBS in the menu and click on Configure. Okay now your with me. Next Pic…

Now is where the fun begins. Hit enter on Networks and lets continue shall we.

Hit enter on FidoNet EchoMail and NetMail as the picture depicts. Next Pic ->

Okay here we need to make a couple of changes. Make sure your paths look right

and the settings. Remember this is my configuration and you should set any instance

“to your drive letter” or however you have your directory structure. Mine is

basically all default settings. Also 1:261/1401 is my fidonet address, yours will

be different, change all those instances to your FidoNet address. Might help..

😉 Next Pic ->

Hit enter on Message Areas. Next Pic->

Hit Enter on Fidonet Message Echo. If this is not here press the Insert key on

your keyboard and make the entry above. Next Pic ->

Type in your Message Group Long Name as the picture depicts. I call mine Fidonet

you may want it to be something else. Next Pic ->

Type in your Group Short Name Mine is FidoNet. You can make this what you want.

Next Pic ->

Here is what you see after typing in the Long, and Short name for your new entry.

The Internal Code Prefix I have is FIDO. This is a must so as not to have instances

of crosslinked conferences. Rob suggested to use FIDO so this would not happen. Just

a word of advice if you do enter anything in here it cannot be changed or your

messages will disappear (well not disappear but will not be linked). This goes for

all the sub boards in that particular Message Group. Unfortunately at this moment

Synchronet BBS does not have this functionality to change your internal code prefix

on the fly. Another thing to note is I give all my users that validate the Level 50

so I myself figure that no-one but your validated users should have access to FidoNet.

Reason being this. Any joe blow can log onto your Telnet or Website as a Guest and

start a bunch of stuff in FidoNet. So Make sure you limit access. 😉 Next Pic->

Okay time to import the areas from your backbone file. Hit enter on the Import

Areas and goto the next pic->

Highlight and hit enter. This is what the filename used to be changed

here within the last year or so. Now its called Backbone. Next Pic->

Okay here we type in the full path and filename for your Backbone(including

extension which may differ). Notice I put a directory called Fidonet. Just makes it

easier to find all your fidonet files in one area. After entering the path and

filename hit enter. Next Pic->

Okay after it says you have successfully imported 454 Message Subs you can go

into the Message Sub-boards and edit the list. Delete Entrees you don’t care to have

on your BBS.  Next Pic->

All of this is concerning your 1st Message Sub Board in the list then you can

clone this to all of the other message sub boards more on this later. This is the

toggle options set it up like the picture above. It is a must that Users Post Using

Real Names! Do Not Change this to no or you could get stripped of your FidoNet Access.

Read the Policies if you have any questions.

Here is the Network Options Under the 1st Sub still. Make sure your FidoNet Address

is your FidoNet Address and the settings are the same. Don’t gate FidoNet, I think

they would get pissed. Next Pic->

Okay we are still setting things up for the 1st Sub. This is Advanced Options.

These are default settings leave them as is. Next Pic->

Back to the Fidonet Echo group by pressing your esc key on your keyboard. Now

highlight Clone Options and hit enter. Next Pic->

Hit enter on Yes here. Then all those settings will be repeated to all the Subs.

Better than entering that info to every one. Next Pic->

Yep we are heading back into the depths of the Message Sub-boards. Gotta enter

some more info in each one of the subs that are Sysop only, Read Only, and FidoNet

Specific Areas. Next Pic->

Okay here is a Administration Area for FidoNet. I set mine to LEVEL 99. This

will not let your normal users be able to see this Sub. Repeat these steps for

all Sysop Only, Read Only (Would be posting requirements on that one), And the

rest of the FidoNet Specific Areas including your Region Subs. ATTENTION: Before

doing this you may want to add Maximum Messages and Duplicate Message Checking

values then clone them to the rest of the subs. Sorry forgot to mention that. Just

go back into the 1st Sub in the list which is 10th Amd Sub Board make your adjustments

hit esc and select the Clone option and hit enter then hit enter on YES. Next Pic->

Press Esc until you hit this screen. Hit enter on Yes to save those changes. Next Pic->

Okay now we need to exit out of SCFG and Now we can start on echocfg.exe. Hit

enter on Yes. Next Pic->

Click on Start / Programs / Accessories / Command Prompt to get to this screen.

Change your drive letter to the drive that has your bbs files. get into

x:sbbsexec directory. Type in the command line like above except with your drive

letter if its not c: ie.. echocfg x:sbbsctrlsbbsecho.cfg Again x is your drive

letter that your running the bbs off of. Next Pic->

Things to check here is that the Mailer Type is Binkley/FLO. Very Important.

Basically this is the default settings. Highlight Nodes and hit Enter. Next Pic->

You may not have anything under nodes. Press the Insert key and enter the info

for your HUB starting with the Hub’s fidonet address which Mine is 1:261/38. Your

Hub’s Address is the only one that has Direct set to Yes. Enter your Password given

to you by your coordinator to access the hub in the highlighted field above. Route

To will be your Hub’s FidoNet Address in every entry. Next Pic->

This is an example of Zone 1 (1:ALL) message routing. This will be repeated for

2:ALL 3:ALL 4:ALL 5:ALL 6:ALL Do NOT enter a password in the nodes other than your

Hub’s FidoNet Address, its not needed. Note that everything else in the zone specifics

are not turned on except the Route Entry. Now if your NOT expecting to install any

other Networks, ie Inter BBS Gaming League or additional message echos like StarNET.

You should have your (Hub’s Fido Address, and ALL) in the node list. Thats it. Just

set it up like above except for 1:ALL it would be just ALL in that field and NOT

2:ALL 3:ALL 4:ALL 5:ALL or 6:ALL in the node listing. Next Pic->

Highlight Paths in the main screen and hit enter. Next Pic->

Your Paths should look like this if your bbs is located on the C drive and your

using default paths for each program. I put in the path names for some reason SCFG->

is not passing the right drive letter for me. So probably safe to do it this way.

Why not works for me. Next Pic->

Go back to Main Menu and Highlight Log Options and hit enter. Next Pic->

This is default settings. Best to keep these Log Options to the default settings.

Next Pic->

Toggle Options, highlight and hit enter. Next Pic->

These are my settings for Toggle Options. I believe they are default settings.

Next Pic->

Okay highlight Archive Programs and hit enter. Next Pic->

By Default this is the only Archive Program in the list. Highlight it and hit

enter and you will see the info on it. These are default settings for ZIP.

Next Pic->

Additional Echo Lists by default there is nothing in there. I haven’t installed

any additional here so this would be no help to you. We are done with echocfg now

you can esc til save, and exit the program. Next Pic->

Now I just put these in my sbbsexec directory, Pkzip and Pkunzip. In order for

your Sbbsecho to perform correctly. These files must be included in your Environment

variables in the PATH entry. This is so Sbbsecho can uncompress and or compress messages.

Next Pic->

Okay back into the configuration menu for Synchronet BBS. Highlight Message Areas

and hit enter. Next Pic->

Highlight Message Echo and hit enter. Next Pic->

Highlight Export Areas and hit enter. Next Pic->

Highlight AREAS.BBS and hit enter. Next Pic->

This is asking you for your Hub’s FidoNet Address ie.. Mine is 1:261/38. Enter

yours then hit the enter key. Next Pic->

You’ll get this for confirmation just hit enter again. Next Pic->

Go back to the main menu save and highlight External Programs and hit enter.

Next Pic->

Highlight Timed Events and press enter. Next Pic->

Notice here that we have 2 timed events. Fidoin and Fidoout these are required

to properly send/receive your netmail and echomail accordingly. If these are not in

this list you’ll have to make them by pressing the INS key on your keyboard. Just

copy the settings I have in the following 2 entrees.

These are the settings for FIDOIN.

These are the settings for FIDOOUT.

OK now that we have that in there we wanna press ESC key on your keyboard and

save and then exit like this picture depicts. Your all set up except for Radius.

This walkthrough will be located on my LeftNav Menu when I have it available.


FidoNet Setup on Radius 4.010 for Dummies




Part 2 The Wrap Up to FidoNet Setup on Synchronet BBS (Windows XP) for Dummies



By Dantin Hart of Rat’s Nest BBS 9/26/05
Ok in the initial picture this is the files needed from its new homepage.
This Setup is for Radius 4.010 and its a basic setup to get you to be able to transfer

and receive Echo Mail from FidoNet through your Hub’s Coordinator. A few things to

note here is that Radius 4.010 is in the Russian language by default and you have to

follow the instructions as closely as possible to be able to convert this to English,

not too hard. This is an excellant front door program. Understand any reference to

a hard drive letter ie.. C: will be exchanged with “Your drive letter”.

These are the files required for proper installation of Radius 4.010. Please note

that these instructions are for installation of Radius 4.010 for Windows XP. There

may be some differences to the different ports if at all available from this web site.

Get your file HERE this is the page in english.

(Note : that web page is no longer there, but I put in a link to get the file, off FileGate)

If you would like to use Taurus, here the link HERE,

if your computer doesn’t like that version, use this one HERE,

then goto down 3 pictures and follow the info.

Hit your back button on your browser to get back here. Uncompress the archives into the

same directory. The directory I have it set up on is x:sbbsradius. If you do the

same it will make it much easier to follow this Walkthrough. Mind you x:sbbsradius

x = Your Drive Letter. Next Pic->

Okay to get here you have uncompressed the archive for Radius and run the setup file.

As this picture indicates, put a checkmark next to the only line that has TCP/IP in

it. Then click on the middle button. Next Pic->

After you click on the middle button in the prior picture you’ll come to this

screen. Follow along exactly with the pictures and you should be fine. Left click

on the third set of question marks from the right (as the picture indicates). Select

the icon that represents a hammer with pink handle with I think is a chipper.

Next Pic->

Okay this window will pop up. Click on interface in the left area and you’ll come

to the picture as depicted above. Just click on the pull down menu and select english

on the left pull down menu. After that click on the 2nd button from the right to

apply the settings. Bingo we’re in english. Now click ok. Next Pic ->

Here we want to click on Config and then Paths. Next Pic ->

Here is my Config for Paths. Understand I installed my Radius in my SBBS Directory.

You should do the same to help follow along with the Synchronet / FidoNet / Radius

setup. Also change to your drive letter and path for where your files are located.

Also the Main AKA should be your FidoNet Address. Click OK. Next Pic->

Now Under Config Again we want Nodelist. Click on it. Next Pic ->

In this pic you want to add where your nodelist file is located. I have mine

located in the Nodelist directory off of Radius. Just type in there the full path to

your nodelist with the filename: nodelist.%%% <- extension is a wildcard. So make

sure when you get your latest nodelist file you delete the other one in the directory

before copying or moving over the new one into the same directory. Also note the 5D

FTN domain this should be fidonet as shown in the above example. Click ok. Next Pic ->

Here we are under Tool selection from the Main Menu. Make sure you have copied your

nodelist to the path entered. Click on the Compile Nodelist. It will ask if its OK to

compile the nodelist. Click Yes. Next Pic ->

No Goto the area depicted in the above picture. Passwords, and click on it.

Next Pic->

Under the nodes you enter your HUB’s FidoNet Address. In the next field will be

the password you were given to access the HUB. After you fill this in click OK.

Next Pic->

Okay on to Config Preferences and click on it. Next Pic->

Under Preferences this is my Main configuration screen. Most of this is defaults.

Only fields I changed was the Main Address(Your FidoNet Address) and the Synch clock

with:(Your Hub’s FidoNet Address). Now towards the bottom is a blue Next>> Click on

it. Next Pic->

Here is my setup for Main (Part 2). Should be Defaults but double check with my

Settings. When done click on System in the left Column to continue. Next Pic->

These are the default Settings for System under Preferences. When done in here click

on Interface next. Next Pic->

Remember this? This is where you changed the Russian to English for this walkthrough.

This is my configuration. Pretty much the default settings. To continue click on Tray

in the left column. Next Pic->

These are my settings for Tray. Again pretty much the defaults. To continue click

on Logs in the left column. Next Pic->

These are my settings for the Logs. Again Pretty Much the Defaults. To Continue

click on RCC in the Left Column. Next Pic->

This is RCC (Remote Control Console). I have not set this up because I don’t see

the need. To Continue click on RAS DialUp in the Left Column. Next Pic->

I don’t have RAS DialUp Configured. I use the telnet option. To Continue click on

Protocols in the Left Column. Next Pic->

Protocols this is my configurations. Lamps in Tray was optional but it looks cool

when it connects to your Hub. To Continue click on Netmail in the Left Column

Next Pic->

Okay here is NetMail. If you do use this Dynamic Routing this is explained from

the help only accessible from the main page of course but may-be in the next version

help will be linked through each window. To Continue click on Tariff in the Left

Column. Next Pic->

Tariff under Preferences. Not a lot to choose from but this is the default. To

Continue click on Sounds in the Left Column. Next Pic->

Okay here is the Sounds under Preferences. In order to make these work they each

need to be checked for one and the complete directory and path to the sound file.

To Continue click on Paths in the Left Column. Next Pic->

Paths under preferences. This is exactly whats under Main / Config / Paths. To

Continue click OK. Next Pic->

Okay all the fun stuff. TCP/IP Daemon under the Config. Click on it. Next Pic->

This is General Under TCP/IP Daemon. Here are the port settings for Telnet. Look

under Telnet there is a port in there you want to change just set it up like mine

and you will not have port conflicts. The port I was referring to is port 23 which is

your port number for folks to telnet into your bbs. This is a must if your running

a telnetable BBS. Do not change it if you have a non-standard port number for your

telnetable BBS. Click on Station in the Tabs to Continue. Next Pic->

Okay this is Important here. To find out what your settings should be go into the

Tool from Main Screen, and Browse Nodelist to find out your specifics for this

Picture. Make sure its exactly the same. MAKE sure you have @fidonet next to YOUR

fidonet address in the Address list field. To Continue click on AKA in the tabs.

Next Pic->

This is where you check for your particular information. To Continue click on

config in the main screen TCP/IP Daemon then click on AKA Tab. Next Pic->

Not Needed for just having FidoNet on your BBS. To Continue Click on Banner in the

Tabs. Next Pic->

Okay in this field if you are allowing Radius 4.010 to be a Telnet Server. This

is your greeting to anyone connects via telneting in with a Telnet Terminal Program.

To Continue click on Restrictions Tab. Next Pic->

Restrictions screen. In the Field below all you want in there is TCP. To Continue

click on Events Tab. Next Pic->

Events under TCP/IP Daemon. I have nothing in here but I believe this is for

immediate import of messages. Doesn’t really matter because SBBSEcho takes care of

all of this trivial stuff. To continue click on DNS Tab. Next Pic->

DNS under TCP/IP Daemon. Put exactly what I have in here. Make sure you put

fidonet in the Root domain field and the FTN domain field. To Continue click on Nodes

in the Tabs. Next Pic->

Nodes under TCP/IP Daemon Config. Under nodes you should have your HUB’s FidoNet

Address. Under Overrides here is the syntax(entered with quotes) “telnet address to HUB”

_24555,(IF using non-standard BinkP port)TCP,CM,BND. TCP = Telnet access,

CM = To Tell you the truth I don’t know but it works. BND = Tells Radius this is a

BinkP or Binkley/Flow type HUB. So the standard access would be “Telnet Address”,

TCP,CM,BND. Unless stated differently by your Hub’s Coordinator. Click OK to Continue

Next Pic->

Okay here is the TCP/IP Special Flags for that Telnet String we were talking about

in the previous picture. Next Pic->

This is where the Node Inspector Is Located. We are going there next so click on it.

Next Pic->

OKAY! If everything is set up correctly under the Current Node it should have your

HUB’s FidoNet Address in that field. There Should be ****** in the Password field.

a call out string in the TCP/IP Field. Only one thing left to do here and thats setup

Your Cron which is in this window under Poll and the cron is in the Periodical Field.

Should be set to 0 * * * *, Which is poll your hub every hour on the hour every day

of every month. If you want a different configuration they have a pretty good help

on it in the Main / Help. Look for Cron. Click OK. Next Pic->

Okay before doing whats in this picture you need to restart the program. Click on

System in the Main Screen, then click on restart. Then continue by clicking on Poll

and then Create Crash Poll. Next Pic->

Okay this is what you see after you click on Crash Poll. Make sure you HUB’s

FidoNet Address shows up in the drop down menu. If not click on the browse button and

select it from there. Then click the OK button. Next Pic->

Click on the Daemon Tab after clicking ok. You should see the current message

under the graphical display. With a Message like what is shown in the picture above

If so Congratulations! You have connected to your Uplink successfully.

If you have any questions or comments about this setup please feel free to E-Mail me at

Update – So what if you are involved in more than one FTN network? Here are a couple of things I found through trial and error and digging through the pretty much nonexistent help files.

  1. Make sure that under the AKAs tab in the TCP/IP config that if you get more than one network from the same system that you list all of the akas on one line such as:


You just need to make sure that you leave a space between each address as I do in line 3. I get mail for two networks from the same system and both of us are also in fido even though he is not my fido hub.

You’ll also notice that line 1 and 2 seem to be for the same network. They are but the echomail and filebone come in from two completely different systems in Gatornet which is why I have them both listed.

Under Node Inspector I have each of the addresses and passwords set up. For the ones that I need to poll I also have a cron set up to poll once per hour.

I will also be hubbing for another small network at some point soon and will post instructions here how to set up Sbbsecho for that. I’ll link to it from this page.


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