Current Features

OAT currently sports a wide range of features, including some of the MaxTF Version One features as well as a wide range of additional features, many of which were the brainchild of Ken Sutherland.

File Search Engine

Provides complete indexing of BBS File Areas to create text listings of the files in each area. Users can also search the listings by file name or file name and comment. The File Search Engine is very fast, especially in comparison to TeleFinder's online BBS File Find option.

Mail Filtering

This is a feature that TeleFinder BBS users have long been waiting for: the option to have aliases for users on the BBS. Users still log on under their real name, but their mail accounts can be aliased, and each user can have multiple email addresses! For example, my email address is, but I can also be reached at and Outgoing mail from aliases is also fully supported, and sysops can set their accounts so they can email from any BBS account (eg webmaster, sysop, admin, etc).


A mail-filtering related feature, .. any mail arriving at your site without a valid address will be diverted to a user called 'Postmaster'. You can then resend the mail items to the proper recipient (eg in the case of a slightly misspelled name), and send an email to the sender to inform them of the error.

Sent Mail Record

A feature requested by many TeleFinder BBS users is a record of all outgoing mail sent. This is implemented by OAT's Sent Mail Record feature. A copy of all outgoing mail is saved in a folder called 'Sent Mail Items' in each users' mail box.

Guest Mail Restrictions

Ensures that the user 'guest' can only send mail to 'sysop'.

Buddy Lists

A recent addition to OAT's feature list, buddy lists allow special account names to be treated as group accounts. This means that users can email a group called (for example) 'sysops' and the email will be sent to all the sysops on the BBS. Groups of friends can also be set up.

Buddy Lists also supports mass-mailing to Access Groups or to All BBS Users.

Topic Repair

TeleFinder Topic files tend to suffer from slight problems from time to time. These problems include missing or damaged message files (in the '' folder), actual topic index files with invalid lengths or message numbers. OAT's Topic Repair examines topic files on your BBS for such errors, and fixes them.

Topic Links Repair

OAT is able to update and verify the relationship between real topic files available on your BBS and the references made to them in the Mail Server Config file.

Mailbox Cleanup

Mailbox Cleanup lets the sysop maintain users' mail boxes on the BBS. It does this by automatically deleting files that are older than a certain date. Files in the users' pub folders or in Web Space directories are left alone.

The utility allows different criteria to be set for each access group, as well as the option to have an 'amnesty' period, whereby the user will be given the opportunity to delete the files themselves or download them and make backups before the system deletes them automatically.

Mailing List Importer

OAT has a very useful feature, the Mailing List Importer, which allows you, the BBS sysop, to subscribe to mailing lists from custom BBS accounts (eg named 'list xxx') and have OAT automatically import the mail messages into a TeleFinder-style topic area for viewing online.

Mail Compression

The Mail Compression features of OAT allow TeleFinder systems that are running as gateways to exchange compressed mail packets between sites using OAT. Reductions of about 40-50% are usual, and often more, depending on the exact content of the mail packets.

Conference Adviser

This was OAT's first implemented feature, way back at the beginning of 1996 before OAT itself was even complete in concept. The Conference Adviser lets BBS users search through conferences (TeleFinder topics) for messages addressed to them, messages from selected users, messages containing a specific string in the subject line and/or body text. Clearly, Conference Adviser is a very powerful feature of OAT, however, it is often forgotten.

Online Assistance Users

OAT communicates with BBS users through the use of Instant Messages from OAT-controlled pseudo-users. OAT's user names for the pseudo users are fully customisable, as is the node name which the users appear under.

Online Help Agent

Through OAT's Online Assistance Users, OAT is able to provide BBS users with a customisable online help database.

Remote Sysop Commands

The remote commands that OAT implements allow sysops to edit file and folder information (eg location, type, creator, modification date, creation date, view by, name, etc). In addition, there are commands to restart or shutdown the server machine, quit the OAT application and also a 'call' command that will play a selected sound on the server machine.

PPP Assistant

This provides support for sysops using FreePPP 2.5 or later to keep the PPP connection alive. It works by periodically pinging a remote host and closing/reopening the PPP link if the ping fails at any time.

User Logon Notification

Selectively notifies online users when their friends log on or off. Also notifies users when they log on who else is online, rather than having to open the Users Online List.

Mail Notification

Tells online users when they get new mail while they are online. Saves you checking your mailbox every ten minutes!

Keep Server at Front

Makes sure the TeleFinder Server is the front application if the machine is left idle.
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