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How To Increase Torrents Download Speed

If you would like to increase your torrent download speed, you need to configure some of your settings to reach a 256K connection. To do this, you will need to configure your P2P software in your network preferences.

How To Speed Up Torrents

N.B. Many of the settings listed in this article are optimized for a 256K connection. If you would like to calculate the optimal settings for your connection, an example calculation is shown at the end of this tutorial. However, it is highly suggested you read the entire tutorial for guidance on your other settings.

Configuring Your P2P Software

In order to configure your P2P software, you will need to supply your port number, and enable the mapping of your UP2P. Your port will need to be randomized with each torrent addition, according to firewall exceptions. You must also enable DHT for torrent and network, peer exchange, scrapping and pre-allocating all files to CHECK condition.

For Windows XP SP2, tcpip.sys can be patched with LvlLord's event ID 4226 patcher to increase the performance. If a router is present, the IP address will need to be configured by typing the default gateway into the browser. If a firewall is present, settings need to be changed accordingly, allowing access to the internet.

Port Settings

First go to Options > Preferences > Network.

1. Enter any number under Port used for incoming connections. It is recommended to use a port number above 10000. (We used 45682.)

2. Randomise the port each time utorrent starts: UNCHECKED.
It is recommended to leave this unchecked if you have a router. You should check this option if you do not have a firewall or a router, as this option allows for extra security.

3. Enable UPnP port mapping (Windows XP or later): UNCHECKED.
It is recommended that you leave this unchecked, because it often causes download speeds to slow. It is not needed if you manually port forward.

4. Add utorrent to Windows Firewall exceptions (Windows XP SP2 or later): UNCHECKED.
This should only be done if your Windows firewall is disabled.

5. Global Maximum upload rate (kb/s): [0: unlimited]: 22

6. Protocol Encryption: ENABLED. I would recommend everyone to enable this. This can help increase speeds with many ISPs.

7. Allow incoming Legacy Connections: CHECKED.

Network Settings

Options > Preferences > Torrents

N.B. The below calculations were made for a 256K connection.

1. Global Maximum Number of Connections: 130.
If the global maximum number is set too low, the number of connections made to your torrents will be very limited. On the other hand, setting this number too high may use too much bandwidth, and may cause slowdowns.

2. Maximum number of connected peers per torrent: 70.
If you notice that the peers connected to a specific torrent are exactly, or very close to this number, you may increase your maximum number to improve the speeds.

3. Number of upload slots per torrent: 3.
This number depends on how much you would like to upload for other users. Setting this too low may affect your download speeds.

4. Use additional upload slots if upload speed <90%: CHECKED.

5. Maximum number of active torrents: 2.

6. Maximum number of active downloads: 1.

7. Enable DHT Network: CHECKED.
It is recommended that this be checked in order to improve speeds. More people will likely be available for sharing if this is checked.

8. Enable DHT for new torrents: CHECKED.

9. Enable Peer Exchange: CHECKED.

10. Enable scrapping: CHECKED.

11. Pre-allocate all files: CHECKED.

12. Append .!ut to incomplete files: UNCHECKED.

Torrent Settings

Options > Preferences > Advanced

net.max_halfopen: 50
If you use Windows XP SP2, patch tcpip.sys with LvlLord's Event ID 4226 Patcher to get a better performance.

This option should NOT be changed unless you have Windows XP SP2, and have patched tcpip.sys.

You can also patch tcpip.sys with xp-Antispy.

If You Have a Firewall

Open up the options/preferences/settings for the firewall. Your firewall will usually be represented by a clickable icon in the task bar.

Look for the keywords "allow list" or "programs."

Add the application you would like to give access to the internet, and make sure you save your settings.

If You Have a Router

1. Go to Start > Run. Type
> Enter. Then type
> Enter.

2. Remember both your IP address and your default gateway.

3. Type your default gateway into your default browser. You may be met with a password prompt. (A common default username and password is admin.)

4. Go to Applications. Fill out one line for each P2P client that you use.

5. Each line will require the use of your IP address, the correct port range as well as either a tcp or udp setting.

6. You can both find and change the ports in the P2P client settings. Be sure that the ports in the P2P settings are the same as those in the router.

7. Most P2P apps require that both tcp and udp remain checked. If you are not sure, it is recommended to check your P2P client's FAQ.

8. Save your settings.

9. Check PortForward.com to forward ports for uTorrent.

N.B. The settings that are mentioned above are relative to personal bandwidths.

How To Calculate Optimal Settings for Your Connection

In order to apply the information above, you must be familiar with your optimal upload and download speeds.

If you use your maximum upload speed, note that there will not be enough space left for the files you are downloading. It is therefore recommended to cap your upload speed to about 80% of the maximum.

Also note that similar to upload speed, setting your maximum download speed to unlimited will ultimately hurt your connection. Use a slightly slower speed to optimize your download speed.

Example Calculation

Upload speed * 80%
Maximum download speed

Download speed * 90%
Maximum connected peers per torrent

Upload speed * 1.3
Maximum upload slots

1 + (upload speed/6)
Disable Windows Firewall

Windows Firewall does not take well to P2P, so it is recommended to disable P2P and use a firewall such as Zone Alarm instead.

Finally, you can optimize your internet connection using TCP Optimizer.

Image: © berlinimpressions - 123RF.com

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