A group of people at McGill University in Canada got together and created a query system called archie. It was originally formed to be a quick and easy way to scan the offerings of the many anonymous FTP sites that are maintained around the world. As time progressed, archie grew to include other valuable services as well.
The archie service is accessible through an interactive telnet session, email queries, and command-line and X-window clients. The email responses can be used along with FTPmail servers for those not on the Internet. (See section FTP-by-Mail Servers, for info on using FTPmail servers.)
Currently, archie tracks the contents of over 800 anonymous FTP archive sites containing over a million files stored across the Internet. Collectively, these files represent well over 50 gigabytes of information, with new entries being added daily.
The archie server automatically updates the listing information from each site about once a month. This avoids constantly updating the databases, which could waste network resources, yet ensures that the information on each site's holdings is reasonably up to date.
To access archie interactively,
Host ftp.uu.net (188.8.131.52) Last updated 10:30 7 Jan 1992 Location: /packages/X/contrib FILE rw-r--r-- 15548 Oct 8 20:29 vine.tar.Z Host nic.funet.fi (184.108.40.206) Last updated 05:07 4 Jan 1992 Location: /pub/X11/contrib FILE rw-rw-r-- 15548 Nov 8 03:25 vine.tar.Z
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National Technical University of Athens