December 12, 2006

How to download movies and softwares using Torrents

Do you want to download movies and Softwares from Internet? Torrents is the best way to download big files like movies, tv shows, music concerts, softwares, etc. In this article, I will guide you to download files using Torrents step by step.

What is Torrent?

Torrent is also called as BitTorrent. Torrent is a technology that is used to distribute large amounts of data widely without incurring the corresponding consumption in costly server and bandwidth resources.

More explanation to make it understandable to non-techies:

Torrent is a technology that enables us to share files with our peers. Suppose A is having a file and offers to share it with friends. Using Torrents, B downloads the file from A's computer. Now, if C wants to download it, he can do it from A and B as B has the file too. Now if another user D wants to download it, he can do it from A, B and C. Even if A stops sharing it (this can happen when A goes off from the network, switches off his computer or intentionally wants to stop sharing it), D still have the chance to download it from B and C.

Torrent network is very vast. So normally, if you want to download a file that is popular, many users will be sharing it for you. Sharing is called 'Seeding' in Torrent world.

What do we need to have for downloading?
a. A Torrent Client Software.
b. A Torrent Search Engine Site.
c. A Torrent file. (A file with .torrent extension)
Now, step by step guide to download files using Torrent (I have used uTorrent software and ISOHunt site as an example in this tutorial) :

Step 1:

Download a software called Torrent Client. This software is used to manage your torrents. You can have multiple download simultaneously. You can stop, pause or resume downloads anytime. uTorrent is the most famous software in the field now. Azureus, BitComet, BitTornado and ABC are other famous ones.

Step 2:

Install the downloaded software. Installation is simple. No special guidance needed.

Step 3:

Goto any Torrent search site. ISOHunt, Torrentz, PirateBay and Torrentspy are few of the many Torrent sites. Below is the screenshot of how ISOHunt site looks:

Click to enlarge.

Step 4:

Type whatever you want to download in the search box. I typed 'free ebooks' in the example. The screenshot below shows some of the results for my search 'free ebooks'.

Click to enlarge.

Step 5:

Select the desired result item and click on it. See the screenshot below to know how it looked when i clicked one of the results '#Western Philosophy Ebook Collection'

Click to enlarge.

I have marked the size of the file and No. of seeders for you to notice. No. of seeders means No. of users sharing the file.

Step 6:

Download the Torrent file. Note that Torrent file is NOT the original file you want to download. Using this .torrent file, you will be able to download the file you wanted. In this example, I downloaded the torrent file Using it, I will download '#Western Philosophy Ebook Collection'. That procedure will be explained in the next steps.

Step 7:

Open the Torrent Client Application that you installed in step 2.

Step 8:

'Add' (may be called 'open' in other applications like Azureus) the downloaded torrent file in the Torrent Client application. The screenshot below shows how to add torrent file in uTorrent Application.

Click to enlarge.

Step 9:

Select path to save the file. The screenshot below shows how to select path and other settings in uTorrent.

Click to enlarge.

The list of files in the bottom of the window are the files that are included in the Torrent file. To understand Torrent better, you can imagine a torrent file as a zip file, which is a collection of files in a compressed format. In this example, I have selected to download a file called '#Western Philosophy Ebook Collection', which is a collection of many files (ebooks). That means, I have the option to select files to download.

Step 10:

After selecting the path, the Application starts to work. See the screenshot with explanations below.

Click to enlarge.

Thats it!!

After downloading is finished, you can access the file(s) from the path where you saved it.

Important Notes:
  • You need to seed even after downloading the file because, you need to maintain download/upload ratio to keep the Torrent client to work.
  • You can adjust the download / Upload speed. 4:3 speed ratio is recommended. Meaning, if your download speed is 32Kbps, set your upload speed to 24Kbps. This setting need not be followed when in 'seeding only' mode.
  • Some Torrent sites need login authentication to use their Torrents. Suppose you have logged in to a site, downloaded the file partially and decided to continue downloading it the next day. The next day, you must login first to continue the download.
  • Sometimes, there would be no seeders to seed you the file. Be patient. The application will start downloading it again as soon as it finds a seeder.
  • All the Torrent applications use ports to perform their operation. You may need to open the correct port in your firewall.
Very Important Note:
Using Torrents or any other file sharing applications is legal, but downloading illegal materials is not. DO NOT DOWNLOAD ANY ILLEGAL MATERIAL. I am not in this article, in anyway supporting or encouraging downloading or using illegal materials.

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