The FidoNet Nodelist.

How the Nodelist and Nodediff are named

Nodelists are numbered according to the day number of the year of each Friday.   The date Friday, October 11th, 2002,  is day number 284.  The nodelist for this date is then named nodelist.284, as is the nodediff (nodediff.284).
Nodediff.284  is then applied to the previous week's nodelist (in this case, nodelist.277 ) to update the nodelist to nodelist.284.
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How to Update your nodelist

You must have the last week's nodelist in order to apply the node difference file (called the Nodediff), or else you  must just download  the current compiled nodelist.  The current nodediff is always available for download at the Z1C's system, and should also be available from your Regional Coordinator.   The current compiled nodelist is always available on the Z1C (Zone 1 Coordinator) system at, or may be available from your Regional Coordinator.

It is important that your mailer uses the current nodelist  because  nodes in FidoNet often change phone numbers.  When direct dialing over telephone lines is used, not updating your nodelist can cause problems when the phone line you reach is no longer used by a system, or when a previously dialable system becomes internet only.    It is annoying for a human resident to get repeated automatic  dialings from a modem, and this should be avoided at all times.

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How to Apply a Nodediff

The nodediff is applied to last week's nodelist with a program called a nodelist compiler.
Your bbs or mailer software may include a complete nodelist compiler used to update the nodelist each week  with the current nodediff (BBBS Mailer/bbs software has this feature, with it's built-in mailer).

Other mailer or bbs software may only include a data table compiler, i.e,  one that is used to create data tables for that mailer and not to create a complete nodelist from a previous week's nodelist and the nodediff.  Early versions of FrontDoor Mailer, and some others are examples of this type.  For this type mailer, you must use another program, a stand-alone nodelist compiler, to actually update your nodelist/nodediff  first, then use the mailer software to update the mailer data tables.

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