The low down on downloading

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Last week, Ernesto from Torrent Freak asked us a question, “What are your top tips for optimizing download speed?” so our co-founder and CTO, Olivier Chalouhi set to responding. Seems to me that as many people as possible should profit from his wise words, so here they are:

1. Seed. Downloading speeds will be sub-optimal for everyone unless everyone plays their part and seeds. Private tracker sites are a great example of how the overall speed of the swarm increases when everyone is seeding and downloading in equal measure. So, play your part in seeding and tell others to as well.
2. Be connectable. Make sure you’re not fire-walled by opening up your incoming ports or by enabling UPnP in your router otherwise you’ll be leaving bandwidth on the table.
3. Manage your upload speed. It is all about striking a balance. You don’t want the upload speed to be too high, nor do you want it to be too low. Ideally you want to set your upload speed to be 80% of the maximum possible line speed.
4. Select the right torrents. Your download will be faster if you choose to download a torrent where there is a good balance of seeds and peers. For instance, Vuze ranks its search results according to the number of seeds and peers to make this easier.
5. Be realistic. Check the swarm average and if you’re already above average, then you just need to be patient. If you’re below average, go back and check some of these other things I’ve mentioned.
6. Get a Friend Boost. I wouldn’t be a Vuze developer if I didn’t give a plug for the Friend Boost feature we recently developed. When you create a network of Friends on Vuze, you agree to seed content to each other on a preferential basis. That is, if one of your friends has a torrent that you want, you will be able to directly use a portion of their bandwidth to get it. In most cases this will increase your download speed.

Obviously ways in which to actually implement some of these tips will differ from client to client. If you want to find out how to do it on Vuze, you can check out our wiki.

Happy downloading.

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  • Diamond Dave

    Tactical

    and

    practical!

    Thanks!