µTorrent

May 20th, 2006 by Alistair MacDonald Leave a reply »

This week I needed to download a Linux distribution and decided to use BitTorrent to download it. Not having used BitTorrent before I decided to download a few clients to try and was presently suspired with the usability, stability and efficiency of µTorrent.

It is not often I find myself using a piece of software and instead of thinking how it “should” work I found myself thinking “this is good”. The interface at first appears very simple, that is good, but when you go routing around you will find many extra features.

The feature I found very clever and useful was the ability to prioritise the download of select files in a torrent and skip others so you can read the installation notes while the rest of the download completes. The ability to restrict bandwidth in the day is a great feature for me, and the ability to monitor ever little aspect of the transfer in not practically useful but very interesting. The full list of features is immense and if there is a BitTorrent feature it is most likely supported or under development.

To show just how efficient the software is it will allegedly run on a 486 running Windows 95 and less than 16 meg of RAM. Unlike most BitTorrent clients it is not using the original Python basted engine but uses it’s own native engine that dramatically improves performance and efficiency.

The software is not open source and is Windows only so is not the total solution for everybody. It also has some leaching protection that is not appropriate for the evolving UK ADSL market and resulting in my dramatically restricting my downloads in the day so not to swamp the companies upstream Internet.

You can find out more abut µTorrent and download the free software from http://www.utorrent.com/.

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