Your Internet Consultant - The FAQs of Life Online

7.10. How do you find a Veronica server?

Within the Gopher system you need merely to find a Veronica service, and then you will be ready to search through the millions of items of information in gopherspace for the information you seek.

Most Internet systems offer the Gopher service, either through a simple terminal-based interface or through one of the more sophisticated graphical programs such as TurboGopher for the Macintosh or HGOPHER for Windows.

Note: The menu that you see when you first fire up Gopher depends entirely on the Gopher server you're using. The Gopher server at has entirely different menu selections than the one at If you don't like your system's main Gopher menu, you can always connect to another site's Gopher server.

Start up and you'll probably have a menu similar to the following.

1.  About this GOPHER server.
2.  Information about NETCOM/
3.  Internet information/
4.  Jughead - Search High-Level Gopher Menus (via Washington & Lee)
5.  Search Gopherspace using Veronica/
6.  Other Internet Gopher Servers (via U.C. Santa Cruz)/
7.  Weather (via U. Minnesota)/
8.  Worldwide Directory Services (via Notre Dame)/
9.  Interesting items/
Because I'm using a text-based interface, the program can't display whizzy little graphics to indicate what kind of file each of these items is, so instead it shows us this on the very last character of each line. In a nutshell, any line that ends with a period (.) is a file or document; any line ending with a forward slash (/) leads you to another menu; and anything that has <?> (such as item #4) will connect to a program. You can see here that most of the menu items at the top level are pointers to other menu items. Numbers 1 and 10 are text files, and number 4 will run a program called Jughead.

By contrast, here's what it looks like when you start up Gopher on the Whole Earth 'Lectronic Link (WELL):

1.  Information About Gopher/
2.  Computer Information/
3.  Discussion Groups/
4.  Fun & Games/
5.  Internet file server (ftp) sites/
6.  Libraries/
7.  News/
8.  Other Gopher and Information Servers/
9.  Phone Books/
10. Search Gopher Titles at the University of Minnesota <?>
11. Search lots of places at the University of Minnesota <?>
12. University of Minnesota Campus Information/
Here the folks at the WELL have opted to have people start right out with the University of Minnesota (UMinn) Gopher server, a wise choice because Gopher started at UMinn. From here, I can choose #8.
1.  All the Gopher Servers in the World/
2.  Search titles in Gopherspace using veronica/
3.  Africa/
4.  Asia/
5.  Europe/
6.  International Organizations/
7.  Middle East/
8.  North America/
9.  Pacific/
10. South America/
11. Terminal Based Information/
12. WAIS Based Information/
13. Gopher Server Registration
And now I can see the Veronica options.

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