How-to Find the Fastest Torrents

15Jul09

In previous posts, I have written extensively on how Bit Torrent users can successfully increase the speed of their downloads.  In many instances, I focused on altering the options of the client to maximize the upload speed and maximizing the total number of outgoing and incoming connections.

Internet download speed meterSeveral Bit Torrent users look for the perfect tweak that will increase their download speed to their computers maximum effect; however, by selecting the correct torrents is important, and quite not necessarily the torrents used with the majority of peers.  The inventor of Bit Torrent protocol, Bram Cohen, explains the general misunderstanding in one of the previous blog postings.

“Mr. Cohen designed Bit Torrent to access the availability to download specific files from several different sources or areas.  The more popular a particular file is, the quicker a potential user will download, since most users will download the same item at exactly the same time, while these same users will be uploading data to many other users,” as Cohen writes in a previous article.

Indeed, this is an explanation that makes perfect sense.  The more users that download a torrent file, the quicker it is.  Although, this is a popular mantra, it is not accurate.  To quote Cohen again, he states that the description of Bit Torrent mentioned is “somewhere between grossly misleading and wrong.”

Bram Cohen continues to explain:  “There’s a classic fallacy because if one person stands up during a concert, they get a better view than if everybody stood up during a concert, they would all get a better view.  This is of course is not true.  They wind up slightly worse off by all standing, because they all compete with each other for a view.”

Now, how does one get the best out of Bit Torrent?  Or to state it differently:  Which torrent generally gives the user the quickest download times and which torrents perform the absolute best?  I will try and answer it as simplistically as possible for you.

The quickest torrents are those where the leechers (downloaders) tap into upload capacity.  If a user has a lot of leechers and seeders with 1,000 people in it total, it will obviously be faster when more seeders are present.  Why is that?  Seeders do not download while their uploading capacity is presently available to leechers.

Several users can understand the fundamentals.  A torrent with 70 leechers and 30 seeders is quicker than a torrent of 100 seeders and 900 leechers; however, it becomes rather confusing when different size torrents are compared.

An example would be:  a torrent with 300 seeders and 700 leechers (30% seeders) will be typically faster than a torrent with 1000 seeders and 5000 leechers (20% seeders).  Why is that?  The Swarm has a tinier percentage of total seeders.

This is a main reason why many private trackers have quick downloading speeds.  Since various users are obligated to seed as much as they can, they have torrents with over 100 seeders and typically less than 10 leechers.

If you are continually looking for faster torrents, pick up those with the best seeder/leecher ratio OR the one with the high percentage of seeders.  When you do not have a viable choice, do not complain about the slower speeds when only a few of the seeders in the large swarm.  More importantly, seed as much as you can if you do not need the uploading speed for anything else.

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One Response to “How-to Find the Fastest Torrents”

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