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How to Use Torrents

Torrents are used to accomplish faster downloads using a BitTorrent client. The BitTorrent client is essentially a computer program that maintains files for uploading and downloading using the BitTorrent protocol. The first program used for this purpose was conceived by Bram Cohen and named BitTorrent accordingly. These programs allow users to access large files for downloading without burdening the computer’s overall performance. Numerous file types can be accessed using a BitTorrent client readily. However there are obvious concerns about leaving the computer open to viruses when downloading. Therefore it is important to use the necessary anti-virus software(s) to reduce the risk of contracting computer viruses and other forms of malware. Downloading a torrent is accomplished by first downloading a suitable BitTorrent client and choosing an appropriate website for searching for files.

Things you will need

  • A functioning computer
  • A stable internet connection
  • A BitTorrent client

Instructions

  1. You will need to download a BitTorrent client. Choose the one that is most appropriate to your needs and system requirements. Most torrents are free with the exception of only a few. Common torrents are BitTorrent, Azures and Utorrent. Utorrent does not require installation, it does not use much system space and has the features needed to successfully download files. Some systems are pre-packaged with an accompanying BitTorrent client, for example Ubunutu’s KDE is installed with Ktorrent. There are several clients available for use, you may refer to Wikipedia’s BitTorrents client comparison page to get an exhaustive list of available clients.
  2. Once the BitTorrent client has been downloaded and installed on the computer. You can now search using the prefered engine.
  3. A few engines that may be used are Torrents, ISO Hunt and The Pirate Bay. Each engine will operate in a similar manner.
  4. To use the search engine type the file that you wish to retrieve in the required field. There will be an option to narrow down the search using filters such as audio, video, etc. to make searching more precise. However this may reduce the number of results if the item being searched for is fairly unpopular. Once the results are displayed on the website choose accordingly.
  5. When choosing make note of the information given. The information will be presented using designated jargon.
  6. The first bit of information to look at are the number of seeders. A seeder maintains the specific file for download, and still presently shares these files. If the result displays 0 at “S” which represents the number of seeders, then the torrent cannot be downloaded. In general it is best to choose a file with at least 30 or more seeders. Choosing files with a few seeders will result in very slow downloading for sometimes up to a week. If there are no other alternatives, especially when the file being searched for produces few results, then you may have to settle for only a few seeders to download from.
  7. The next piece of information that should be considered is the file size. There are often instances where the a result may display the same file but with different file sizes. For example: a particular movie may appear to be 600MB and 1.2 GB in two of the displayed search results. This may occur because of contrasting formatting methods. In general it is better to choose the file that is of a smaller size. However if one format is prefered over the other, then choose the torrent based on its format not size. Additionally when choosing a torrent overall, always look at the description to ensure it is exactly what you wanted.
  8. Once the file has been chosen according to desired specifications, click the option to “download this torrent” and begin download. You can check the status on the BitTorrent client to see how download is progressing.

Do’s and Dont’s

  • Do not download illegal files.
  • Always activate an anti-virus software when using any application for downloading files.
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