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Frequently asked questions

Really Simple Aggregator (PC)

On this page, you'll find some basic instructions on getting started with Really Simple Aggregator.

How do I subscribe to my first feed?

First, double-click on the system tray icon to open the application and select Subscribe to new feed from the Feed menu (alternatively, right-click the system tray icon and select this option directly). You'll now have to enter the URL of the feed. You can also simply enter a website address here and let the program find the URL of the feed automatically. Click Subscribe and the feed will be added to your list. Also, the current items of the feed will be added to the Recent items tab, as well as new items in the future. From now on you'll be notified of new items automatically through a system tray balloon.

What's a (high) priority feed?

If feeds need to be checked for updates, priority feeds will always be checked first. Priority feeds will also be checked with a higher frequency. Priority feeds also have a distinct sound by default and a distinct icon will be placed in the system tray if you have unread messages.

What happens if I miss a balloon?

System tray balloons don't expire if you don't use your computer. If you missed a balloon anyway, the system tray icon will change and the number of new messages is shown in the tooltip. Double-click the icon to go to the Recent items tab and double-click an item there to read it. For quick access to unread feeds, you can also single-left-click the system tray icon.

How do I subscribe to feeds protected by a password?

This is the same as for any other feed, but you need to specify your username and password in the feed URL. For example, if the feed is located at, your username is user and your password is password, then you should subscribe to If your username is an e-mail address, like, then the URL becomes After subscribing, the aggregator will prevent your password from being revealed through the user interface. However, note that it is not hard to retrieve the password from your hard disk.

Can I temporarily disable the balloons?

You can do this by right-clicking the sytem tray icon and checking Do not disturb (alternatively, select this option from the Tools menu). While this mode is in effect, feeds are still checked for updates and new items are still added to the Recent items tab, but you are not notified of them. However, the system tray icon and its tooltip will still silently change if a new item is found. In the rare case that you must completely terminate the aggregator's process, you can do this through Exit aggregator in the Tools menu, but you should never really need this option.

How often are feeds checked for updates?

Normal feeds will be checked between every ten minutes and every twelve hours. Priority feeds will be checked between every three minutes and every ten minutes. The precise interval is determined by the HTTP Expires header or the <ttl> RSS element. If these are not available, the aggregator guesses based on the intervals between the last five posts. If that is not possible either, the minimum interval is used. It is not possible to modify the interval manually.

How are items marked read?

All currently known items of a feed are marked read when you open one of these items through the aggregator. The same applies when marking an item read manually through the Feed menu.

How do I subscribe quickly from within Firefox?

When viewing a feed in Firefox, you can select an application to use to subscribe to the feed. Select the option to choose the application. Next, browse for BRSAggregator.exe in the installation folder of Really Simple Aggregator (default C:\Program Files\Blijbol\Really Simple Aggregator or %AppData%\Blijbol\Programs\Really Simple Aggregator). Do or do not check the box to always subscribe using this application and click Subscribe now. Next time you can immediately click this button. If you checked the box, future feeds will even be sent automatically to Really Simple Aggregator as soon as Firefox opens it.

How do I import and export feed lists?

To import feeds, select the corresponding option from the Feed menu. To export feeds, select them from your feed list and pick Export subscription(s) from the Feed menu. You can use Select all from the Edit menu to select all feeds easily. Using the import and export features, you can transfer subscriptions between different computers or even different aggregators.

Does blocking cookies guarantee anonimity?

No. Just like with web browsers, your IP address, caching information and the HTTP fingerprint can still be used to track you. Really Simple Aggregator therefore also offers an option to simply tell feeds that you do not want to be tracked in the Tools menu, which works the same as the corresponding option in modern web browsers. It is up to feeds to decide to honor this request or not.

Some feeds depend on certain cookies. What should I do?

Disable the blocking of all cookies for feeds in the Tools menu. Next, use Internet Explorer to perform the necessary actions to create the cookies. Really Simple Aggregator shares its cookie storage with Internet Explorer.

Are automatic program updates secure?

Yes. Updates that do not have a valid digital signature are thrown away and ignored by the program. The digital signature consists of a SHA1 hash that is verified using the public key of a 4096 bits RSA key pair.

What is the User-Agent header?

The User-Agent header of the program equals BlijbolReallySimpleAggregator/X.Y.Z, where X.Y.Z is the version number.