Here you can read and add to discussions (Fig 1) among your fellow users.
You enter the discussion board by clicking on a discussion topic.
Once inside the discussion room, the discussion topics are listed in the left-hand column of the discussion page.
The numbers of posted messages are beside the discussion name (e.g. 126).
Each discussion forum will have one or more topics associated with it. You can navigate through the various topics by clicking on the topic names on the left-hand side. Using the – and + signs you can toggle the topics view on/off.
You can also use the Expand iconbeside Discussion Topics to expand the views.
There is dropdown menu bar at the top of the main message screen that lets you decide how you want messages to appear.
Threaded: This lets you see all messages sorted by threads (conversations).
Not Threaded - All Messages: This lists all messages regardless of threads.
Not Threaded - Unread Only: This groups all unread messages.
Not Threaded - Flagged Only: Shows all flagged messages.
You can also sort messages by clicking on Subject, Posted By, or Date located at the top of the main conference page. This will group together messages with the common subjects, authors, or dates.
If you want to toggle the left-hand frame on and off you can select the icon beside the thread view.
Click the Refresh icon to refresh the page.
Note: If you have flagged a message, you will need to click the Refresh icon to view it.
This will remove all flags from messages in that topic.
To begin a search, click on the Show Search icon on the top of the page. You may put a word or string of words in the search box that appears. Click on Search to find messages in that discussion that have that word or string of words. This is a Normal Search.
Clicking on Advanced Search allows you to do a search on a word or string of words in a conference. It also lets you choose if you wish to search just the subject lines or both subject lines and bodies of messages, and it lets you set date parameters for your search. You can also search within message authors as well.
Printing Messages is a great way of keeping a permanent record of the discussions. View the messages you would like printed by searching, flagging, sorting, etc. If you would like to print the messages viewed on your screen, click on the View Printable button on the top of the screen. Right-click and select Print on the view printable screen.
Read All Messages
Click the Read All icon to mark all messages as read.
Click on the discussion name listed on the left-hand side of the screen to enter that particular discussion. The numbers of posted messages are beside the discussion name. Any messages associated with a discussion will then appear with a subject title, who added the message, and when.
To read a message, click on the message title. The message will then appear in the bottom half of the screen.
The titles of your unread messages will appear in bold text. Once read, the message title will no longer be bolded.
Once the number of messages is too large for one screen, the number of messages and quick navigation is located on the bottom of the discussion messages screen. The numbers allow you to skip ahead, and 'Show All' allows you to see all the posted messages in that discussion.
To add a message, simply click on the Add Message button located on the top right-hand side of your screen. Type in a topic that will appear on the discussion board and type in your message in the text box provided. You can choose to have the message in HTML format by selected the in HTML box. Hit 'Submit' and the message will appear above.
Tip: Be careful which discussion you are in before you submit a message, to ensure that you are submitting it to the correct discussion. The title of the discussion will appear at the top of the page.
To reply directly to an existing message that someone has posted, click on their message title to add your comments to that particular thread (conversation). You will see their message, with an option to 'Reply' at the bottom. If you click on Reply, an Add Message box will appear. You may fill this in and, when complete, click 'Submit'.
When replying to a message, you have the option of having your message appear with the original message or not by choosing 'With Message' or 'Without Message'.
Attaching Files to Your Message
When you submit a message, you may also attach a document that others in that discussion can download. To attach a document, click on the 'Browse' button while you are adding the message. This will allow you to find the file you wish to attach. Double clicking on the file name will attach it to your message. When you click on 'Submit', the attachment will appear with your message in that discussion.
Tip: This feature is great for document sharing.
If you read a message that has an attachment, the file name will appear above the body of the message. To download the attachment, right-click on the file name and then click on 'Save Target As' this will allow you to save the file to your hard drive or to a floppy disk. If you are using Netscape, right-click and then choose 'Save As'.
This allows you to indicate messages of importance. Click on the message title and then choose the Flag button in the lower half of the screen. A red flag appears when the screen is refreshed.
To remove a flag from a single message, click on Remove Flag after selecting the message. To remove all flags within the discussion topic, click on the Remove All Flags button on the top of the main discussion page.
To remove the bottom message screen, click on the Preview Pane button. This will pop the messages you select in a new window and remove the bottom message frame from view. This is useful if you have a low resolution and the message screen is too small.
To continue, click the "next" arrow...