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Last post Author Topic: BitTorrent - why bother?  (Read 11900 times)

Carol Haynes

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BitTorrent - why bother?
« on: March 26, 2006, 12:13:06 PM »
I have to confess my experiences with BitTorrent speeds are very poor. So much so that I stopped bothering for a while.

Today I decided to download a Linux Distro which was available in the form of 5 CD ISOs or a single DVD ISO. The DVD is only available via BitTorrent so I thought I'd try again.

It is so frustrating as I don't seem to be able to get speeds consistently above 10K/sec, and most of the time it is <5K/sec (current estimated download time is >100 hours), whereas when I download the CD ISOs in the normal way I am getting download speeds of 120K/sec and higher.

There seem to be lots of peers available in my list for the DVD download and 23/25 of them have 100% of the file. I have my client set to share files too so I am providing upload as well.

Why do people rate BT technology so highly? Is it just me having this crap experience?

moerl

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2006, 12:32:57 PM »
When I download torrents, I use Azureus, and my speeds are great most of the time, because I follow some simple rules. If you want torrents to download quickly, you need to get HEALTHY torrents. To go Torrentspy.com, (one of the better torrent search engines out there), and search for your file. It is going to show you each torrent's health status on the right, with bars. Torrent health is an over-arching term for a few factors, like tracker status, ratio between leechers/seeders, etc. And then you also have to make sure you have no NAT in your network. Do you use a router? A software firewall? Do you use the router's firewall? You have to make sure your BT client has a listening pot dedicated to it, and that it's open. Torrents may work if this is not the case, but they will be much slower.

Good BT experience = Good BT client with correct client and network settings + Healthy Torrents

I cannot stress enough how important the latter is. People think all torrents are the same. And people couldn't be farther from the truth. Here's a quick read on fixes for slow speeds: http://www.dessent.net/btfaq/#speed

The Azureus FAQ has an excellent Wiki with NAT problem solutions and healthy-torrent-talk on there.. except I think the Azureus team put up a brand-new Wiki recently, and it's dead right now. Still, here's the link: http://azureus.aelitis.com/wiki/

Azureus is my client of choice by the way. I highly recommend it. Another client that has gained popularity extremely quickly and has now established itself as a major "player" among the BT clients out there is uTorrent. Here's another great guide :)

Hope this helps.

Mark0

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2006, 12:58:54 PM »
Another thing to note is that some provider do traffic shaping on some ports, typically used by BitTorrent and some other P2P file sharing software (like eMule). Here in Italy at least, but I have read of some other around the world too.

Bye!

Mark0

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2006, 01:03:11 PM »
Carol, just to double check, you may try to download a video from my Tracker, here: http://www.exe64.com:6969/

Try the second file, Windows XP on Apple iMac - The video.
It's small (7MB), but you should get more than 100KB/sec. on that one.
And now there are only about 14 seeders. The day I put up that file as a mirror, it was downloaded about 1000 times, with over 80 seeders. Download speeds was typical waaaay above 300KB/sec.

Bye!

brotherS

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2006, 01:06:16 PM »
It is so frustrating as I don't seem to be able to get speeds consistently above 10K/sec

[...]

Why do people rate BT technology so highly? Is it just me having this crap experience?
You must be doing something (very) wrong... :(

Please read http://azureus.aelit..._high_download_speed


Carol Haynes

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2006, 03:06:25 PM »
Carol, just to double check, you may try to download a video from my Tracker, here: http://www.exe64.com:6969/

Sorry the link just leads to a blank page ???

Carol Haynes

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2006, 03:13:06 PM »
Azureus is my client of choice by the way. I highly recommend it. Another client that has gained popularity extremely quickly and has now established itself as a major "player" among the BT clients out there is uTorrent. Here's another great guide

Azureus was the first client software I tried and I gave up because of the lousy transfer speeds I was getting.

I am using GetRight now (which can now act as a BT client) but I am getting no better speeds.

I'll try reading some of the pages people have quoted and may give Azureus a second chance.

Apart from the fact that some downloads are only available as BTs I still can't really see any advantage. I am using an ADSL connection which gives me 1Mb download speeds, but like most ISPs upload speeds are much slower (256Kb in my case) which means that anyone wanting to use me as a source is going to get very low download speeds as the speed of connection is never going to be as high as my potential upload speed (esp. as I don't plan not to use my computer for hours on end so that they get a marginally faster connection). OK they can share the sourcing of their download between various computers but I still can't see it being as efficient as a straight download at full speed from a fast server.

Mark0

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2006, 03:33:12 PM »
Quote from: Carol Haynes
Sorry the link just leads to a blank page ???
Sorry, I was probably doing some maintenance on the server just in the moments you tried. Now it should work: http://www.exe64.com:6969/

Bye!

Mark0

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2006, 03:37:07 PM »
OK they can share the sourcing of their download between various computers but I still can't see it being as efficient as a straight download at full speed from a fast server.
Instead, that's exactly why it works so well.
For example. That video I mentioned above, put the server that hosted it originally down very quickly, after it was linked from Digg (and some other site).
Instead, my mirror, hosted in a not so powerfull (compared to some other hosts), keeped up without a problem with the increasing demand.
Whit Torrent, even a small, single user, with limited resource, can host a very popular and larged sized files, with not much worries. The Tracker has very limited resource hit on the server, and the compound bandwidth offered by a swarm of PC with even low upload bandwidth soon build a very powerfull serving platform. The more popular the file will be, the more faster everyone will download.

Bye!

Carol Haynes

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2006, 03:38:26 PM »
Sorry, I was probably doing some maintenance on the server just in the moments you tried. Now it should work: http://www.exe64.com:6969/

Nope still a blank window (in Firefox) and an error in Internet Explorer ??

Mark0

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2006, 03:40:32 PM »
My server is having problem! :( I'm not even able to Remote Desktop to it now. I will start to beg with my hoster... uff... !

Mark0

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2006, 04:10:55 PM »
Now it should be up & running, hopefully!
If you can retry, let me know if it worked! :)

Bye!
« Last Edit: March 26, 2006, 04:35:08 PM by Mark0 »

Carol Haynes

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2006, 05:04:40 PM »
Yep the page appears now.

Actually I have downloaded the latest build of Azureus and am now getting decent speeds (at least some of the time, it seems very variable). Strange 'cos last time I used Azureus I wasn't esp. impressed with the speeds acheived.

I have set it up bith the basic 'beginner' settings, the only change I made in the options was to change maximum number of simultaneous downloads to 0 which seemed to bump up download speeds terrifically.

I'll have to write to the GetRight Pro authors 'cos as a BitTorrent client it sucks big time!

kimmchii

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #13 on: March 26, 2006, 05:10:28 PM »
1. if you use a router, you need to do port forwarding correctly, check this out:
http://btfaq.com/natcheck.pl

2. if your ISP is throttling the line, you need to enable encryption, i suggest you use bitcomet, the fastest bittorent client, go to options>advanced>connection> set "protocal header encrypt" to always.

3. forget about azureus, it is bloated.
If you find a good solution and become attached to it, the solution may become your next problem.
~Robert Anthony

Carol Haynes

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #14 on: March 26, 2006, 05:42:00 PM »
Thanks - I have checked my router settings and they seem to work OK.

I don't think there is any throttling going on (most downloads are executed at full speed). Azureus seems to be working at full speed too most of the time, it just seems to go into slower modes every now and again when things stop happening for a while.

I have downloaded BitComet (using Azuureus!) but I think I will hold off trying it for a while while I suss out Azureus again, esp. as I have now configured Firefox & Flashgot to use Auzreus for .torrent files. I may give BitComet a go in my VMWare setup and then make a decision.

I have some major issues with my current setup (regular BSODS) which I can't track down. It may be a memory problem (I added an extra stick of memory a while ago) or it could just be messed up settings as I tried umpteen different firewalls a while back and the BSODS seemed to start as soon as I installed Agnitum's Outpost. The BSODS continued after I uninstalled it too which was a bit worrying. Whatever I am beginning to think the simplest solution is a fresh install of Windows (again!) I really must remember to do a full back up of Windows as it is first installed and updated this time!

brotherS

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #15 on: March 27, 2006, 12:53:19 AM »
Actually I have downloaded the latest build of Azureus and am now getting decent speeds (at least some of the time, it seems very variable). Strange 'cos last time I used Azureus I wasn't esp. impressed with the speeds acheived.

I have set it up bith the basic 'beginner' settings, the only change I made in the options was to change maximum number of simultaneous downloads to 0 which seemed to bump up download speeds terrifically.
Using Azureus was a good choice, but setting simultaneous downloads to 0 isn't. I suggest you use the "IRC" option in the plugins menu and ask for help there regarding your setup - only after you are through http://azureus.aelit..._high_download_speed of course.

Good luck! It's only a bit confusing at first  :Thmbsup:


nudone

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #16 on: March 27, 2006, 01:04:15 AM »
i'm in the UK, Carol, and i know that bandwidth download traffic shaping is used or is certainly going to be used by some of the the isp's. my provider 'freeonline' has been getting ready for it for quite a while with many convoluted strategies on how they will finally implement it (it seems 4pm to midnight are going to be the monitored hours). it may be worth checking what your provider is doing or is planning to do (they won't be monitoring all download traffic, just peer2peer, newsgroup, things like that).

you may like to try utorrent http://www.utorrent.com/ i gave up with azureus. utorrent pretty much worked straight out of the bag for me - haven't even looked at my router settings.

Carol Haynes

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #17 on: March 27, 2006, 03:59:39 AM »
Thanks for that - I have uninstalled Azureus and tried utorrent. That seems to zip along quite nicely and it is SO much less cluttered & minimalistic. Great.

The only problem I had was it kept saying there was insufficient disk space. I presume if you don't set the folders manually it uses the system and user Temp folders (which I have separated from my Doze partition). As soon as I set up proper folders manually it all worked fine.

Reading the FAQs I also notice that Linksys routers seem to have problems with p2p software (especially if links are available for days on end). I wonder if that might be one of my issues?

brotherS

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #18 on: March 27, 2006, 04:48:01 AM »
Thanks for that - I have uninstalled Azureus and tried utorrent. That seems to zip along quite nicely and it is SO much less cluttered & minimalistic. Great.
It doesn't use Java like Azureus, so it's smaller. But it also mostly just copies the new ideas that show up in Azureus. BT newbies might prefer utorrent, I prefer to have all those options and plugins in/for Azureus.

allen

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #19 on: March 27, 2006, 05:35:01 AM »
Bit Torren frustrates me some times too -- the biggest problem is that I'm usually looking for something relatively obscure, which is essentially the reason for the slow download -- too few peers/seeds.  It just so happens that that slow download, however, is faster than no download -- and torrents are often the only thing I can find them in.  So it's slow or nothing :)  Took me over a week to download a 1 gig file.

brotherS

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #20 on: March 27, 2006, 05:55:38 AM »
It just so happens that that slow download, however, is faster than no download -- and torrents are often the only thing I can find them in.  So it's slow or nothing :)  Took me over a week to download a 1 gig file.
:)

Reminds me of the pre-BitTorrent era, when it once took me a MONTH to download a 500 MB file...  :-[

jgpaiva

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #21 on: March 27, 2006, 06:03:55 AM »
Reminds me of the pre-BitTorrent era, when it once took me a MONTH to download a 500 MB file...  :-[
But i bet you gave much more importance to it than you would if it'd take you 1minute to download :tellme:

Carol Haynes

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #22 on: March 27, 2006, 09:45:12 AM »
It just so happens that that slow download, however, is faster than no download -- and torrents are often the only thing I can find them in.  So it's slow or nothing :)  Took me over a week to download a 1 gig file.
:)

Reminds me of the pre-BitTorrent era, when it once took me a MONTH to download a 500 MB file...  :-[

On GetRight's BT client it eastimated 19 days for me yesterday - and that is using BT and broadband ... not bad eh?

f0dder

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #23 on: March 28, 2006, 07:36:00 AM »
The world of torrents is pretty chaotic. You have to make sure you're "connectable" (ie, if you have a NAT router or firewall, you need to punch holes open for the BT client). Then you also need to make sure you upload at a decent rate to your peers, but not too much or your downstream will die because of upstream traffic.

Then there's the whole business of finding "good" torrents. If you're dealing with legal stuff, that shouldn't be too hard. For shady stuff, you need private trackers otherwise your speed will be abysmal.

uTorrent is certainly the best windows client I've found. It does what needs to be done, no more and no less. No bloat and great speeds. Supposedly it's cache system needs some rewriting to be suitable for 100mbit connections to the internet, but... :)

The torrent technology is great when applied correctly, though. It allows for great speeds, great availability, corruption-checking on the fly (ie., you don't need to do .sfv verification as you often need with FTP), et cetera. Unfortunately some companies are abusing torrents - like blizzard, who don't really have massive enough servers, but depend on their peers. Their tracker for WOW updates is usually swamped after an update is release, and their client SUCKS so much that I used to manually extract the .torrent file from it, and used with uTorrent.
- carpe noctem

Mark0

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Re: BitTorrent - why bother?
« Reply #24 on: March 28, 2006, 07:47:45 AM »
Quote from: f0dder
Their tracker for WOW updates is usually swamped after an update is release, and their client SUCKS so much that I used to manually extract the .torrent file from it, and used with uTorrent.
And ffter that, even the Tracker is no more needed, thanks to DHT! :) What more one could ask? :)
My first "real use" for Torrent was to let some people download the video that a friend of mine have made out of a tour in Japan. To today, it was downloaded over 200 times, and it's about 0.5GB. All without dedicating more than 50KB/s. of upload bandwidth on my server (and usually way less was used / needed).

Bye!
« Last Edit: March 28, 2006, 07:49:31 AM by Mark0 »