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How torrent downloading works

Torrent is also known as Bit-Torrent. It was developed by a programmer named Bram Cohen. So before directly starting about how torrent downloading works, we will see how various downloading methods work. Then we will also see how to increase the torrent downloading speed(scroll to last).

Client-Server Method :

We all use this type of method to download various files over the net. In this type,clients are those who are downloading or receiving the files, while server are those computers that provide you that file. Now while downloading a file, client requests the server for that specific file, and the server responds back by providing client with the file needed. Now this data transmission is handled by the network i.e. Internet. Also there are various protocols(certain rules) associated with downloading like FTP(file transfer protocol) or HTTP (hypertext transfer protocol).

How torrent downloading works

The speed of your downloading is affected by various factors like the load or demand on the server for the file. The more is the load, less is  the speed that you get for downloading. That explains, why you get more download speed at the night as compared to day. Also this method is used when you surf the internet. You write a name of website in address bar, which means you are requesting for a webpage with that name, and the server replies back with the page. In this the Web browser is the client or the medium to access files over the internet.

Peer to Peer Method :

In this method of file sharing, the files are on normal computers, and not servers. These computers are called Peers. So you need some software (like utorrent) and not browser to access the files.

How torrent downloading works

So when you run these software’s, they request for the file needed, and find the no. of sources available for the file. The sources are other computers that are running peer-to-peer software which are currently connected to the internet. So in this way, the load is distributed.

But the problem in this type of sharing method is that, people download the file required, and just stops the software from sharing files to others. This is called Leeching.

Now the million dollar question..

How torrent downloading Works ???

Bit-Torrent is based on peer-to-peer sharing with some major differences. It transfers some work load to a Server called as Tracker. Now when you request for a file using the software(eg. utorrent), the software communicates with tracker, and the tracker informs it about various sources of the file available.Now there are two major types of sources:

  • Those who have completed downloading the file and are uploading are called seeders and the process is called seeding.
  • Others who are still downloading the file can also serve as seeders.

How torrent downloading works

The client software which we using, breaks the big file into small parts. Now client software trade for parts with other computers, which we need and provides the parts of the file that others need. In this way we can download multiple parts of file from other swarms (computer connected in the process of sending and receiving).

One more concept i would like to share. The file that you download from a bit torrent site is a .torrent file. It is very small and acts as a pointer to its sources and gives information to the client software about the file.

How to increase the torrent downloading speed ???

Also Bit-torrent has a rule of tit-for-tat. That means, the more you give, the more you will receive. This implies that, if you share or upload files to others, you will get more speed for download. This solves the problem of leeching. You can just start seeding after you have completed the download. This will increase your tit-for-tat rating in bit-torrent and provide you with good speed in the Future. So instead of searching for other articles on how to increase torrent download speed, just start uploading/seeding and you will definitely find an increase in your speed.

Also select a torrent having high number of seeds as compared to peers. It will help you achieve great speed.

If you have any questions or doubts regarding this article, then do post it in the comment section below. I would be happy to help.

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17 thoughts on “How torrent downloading works”

  1. Muhamed Riyaz says:

    really good explanation

    1. mrcoolkaran007 says:

      thank you.. I appreciate users commenting on the post, which shows their sincere efforts of reading it

  2. Shridhar Sahu says:

    Good Analysis …but you could have given user tips such as to set the priority high for the files being downloaded … keep the download speed unlimited and upload speed to 1 kb/s

    1. mrcoolkaran007 says:

      see friend. That is what i have tried to explain. If u limit upload speed,then you will not receive download speed much. So don’t limit upload to 1kb/s. Because your upload and download speed to are two different things.
      And the thing you are saying about priority, it is actually when you have started 2 downloads, so which 1 to give 1st priority, it has nothing to do with speed.

      1. Shridhar Sahu says:

        As for the priority thing I said it about to increase from Task manager ….. Are you sure about the upload part that it shouldn’t be limted

      2. Shridhar Sahu says:

        As for the priority thing I said it about to increase from Task manager ….. Are you sure about the upload part that it shouldn’t be limted

        1. mrcoolkaran007 says:

          yeah i am pretty sure about the upload thing, i have researched on it. they dont want users to only be leecher. so they have introduced this thing, tit for tat and this is the thing that makes torrent different from others.
          Rest what are u talking about task manager. Again it has nothing to do with internet speed. The priority in task mgr indicates, the time a application is allotted to process from the processor. higher the priority u give to a application, more time it will given to process by processor.
          Thanks for asking about that uploading thing. It will be helpful to everyone when they read.
          If any other doubts,feel free to ask.

          1. Shridhar Sahu says:

            If I am downloading two things at a time one from torrent n one from chrome doesn’t then the concept of priority arises

          2. mrcoolkaran007 says:

            nope. Still when you give priority from taskmanager, the downloading speed is not affected by priorities. I tried between IDM and torrents. Still torrent always has high downloading speed as compared to IDM. And 1 thing i have noticed that, when u have started downloading in torrent it will take whole your connection speed, no other downloads in chrome or IDM works.

  3. Prateik AJ says:

    good advice admin but can you tell the other settings about torrent prefrences ( like global upload/download rate, or advnace setting like “bt.allow_***” like that and connection and bandwidth settings )
    hope u cant tell us and thank you…

    1. mrcoolkaran007 says:

      Thank you there. And ya about the preferences, i intentionally did not include all the options, as bittorrent has its guide about all the option/preferences explained very well. Check here
      http://www.bittorrent.com/help/manual/appendixa02
      And about increasing torrent speed, the tip i have mentioned in the post is the best, changing preferences may only limit seeding, but not increase the downloading speed. So i recommend that you should go by keeping the settings default in specially the advanced option.

      1. Prateik AJ says:

        hey thanx for explaining

        1. mrcoolkaran007 says:

          Ur welcm

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  8. Shraddha Gore says:

    My doubts are cleared now! Thanks Karan for this useful article.

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