Some FAQs about PCs you wish you knew before you bought it!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Q: How do I get the best download speed on a bittorrent client?
There are a variety of factors that affects a Bittorrent client's speed.

First of all, your router must support incoming connections, and be configured properly for port forwarding for the BT port ranges.

Second, make sure your firewall don't block incoming traffic. Sometimes your antivirus may also do some blocking as part of anti-worm activity. Most BT clients will tell you if it detects a problem.

Third, most upload does NOT equal more download. THere's a trade-off point on every PC, and a good client would let you configure it easily.

I recommend uTorrent ( as one of the more efficient BT clients around. It also has a very easily configured upload/download limiter that helps you configure the speed. Click on the status bar to bring up the "speed guide". Try xx/512 first. Try it for about 5 minutes, see what kind of speed you achieve on a popular torrent (download some movies or TV shows or whatever, ones with lots of peers and seeds). Then try a higher, then a lower setting. Eventually you'll find one that gives you the best download speed.

On my PC, I found that my best download speed is at xx/384, as I was able to get 95K download. If I set it to next step up, xx/512, I only get about 45K download. If I go lower, xx/256, I get average of about 70K.