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what does seeding mean ?


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after the movie finished downloading the status changed from 'downloading' to 'seeding' and it says it will take another couple of hours to 'seed'... just wondering what this means and if it's necessary to wait for it to seed ?

Secondly, after a couple of my movies finished downloading the status changed to 'finished' yet the 'uploaded' column still increased over night from 1.24gb to 2.23gb... does it still download something else even after the movie finishes ? If so, can I just click on 'stop downloading' once it reaches 100% because I don't want to take up much space with pointless extra bits and pieces ? Or will this make the movie incomplete ?

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You should seed until at least 1.000 Ratio.


A peer is another computer on the internet that you connect to and transfer data. Generally a peer does not have the complete file, otherwise it would be called a seed. Some people also refer to peers as leeches, to distinguish them from those generous folks who have completed their download and continue to leave the client running and act as a seed.


A computer that has a complete copy of a certain torrent. Once your client finishes downloading, it will remain open until you click the Finish button (or otherwise close it.) This is known as being a seed or seeding. You can also start a BT client with a complete file, and once BT has checked the file it will connect and seed the file to others. Generally, it's considered good manners to continue seeding a file after you have finished downloading, to help out others. Also, when a new torrent is posted to a tracker, someone must seed it in order for it to be available to others. Remember, the tracker doesn't know anything of the actual contents of a file, so it's important to follow through and seed a file if you upload the torrent to a tracker.


When there are zero seeds for a given torrent (and not enough peers to have a distributed copy), then eventually all the peers will get stuck with an incomplete file, since no one in the swarm has the missing pieces. When this happens, someone with a complete file (a seed) must connect to the swarm so that those missing pieces can be transferred. This is called reseeding. Usually a request for a reseed comes with an implicit promise that the requester will leave his or her client open for some time period after finishing (to add longevity to the torrent) in return for the kind soul reseeding the file.


The group of machines that are collectively connected for a particular file. For example, if you start a BitTorrent client and it tells you that you're connected to 10 peers and 3 seeds, then the swarm consists of you and those 13 other people.


A server on the Internet that acts to coordinate the action of BitTorrent clients. When you open a torrent, your machine contacts the tracker and asks for a list of peers to contact. Periodically throughout the transfer, your machine will check in with the tracker, telling it how much you've downloaded and uploaded, how much you have left before finishing, and the state you're in (starting, finished download, stopping.) If a tracker is down and you try to open a torrent, you will be unable to connect. If a tracker goes down during a torrent (i.e., you have already connected at some point and are already talking to peers), you will be able to continue transferring with those peers, but no new peers will be able to contact you. Often tracker errors are temporary, so the best thing to do is just wait and leave the client open to continue trying.

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You can play the downloaded file/s and even copy/burn the downloaded file/s once it finishes downloading...even WHILE uTorrent is seeding it. There's no reason to stop them just to do that. :)

Like torrero said, it is best and customary to upload at least to 1:1 ratio. Beyond that, it's up to you if you can spare the bandwidth. If people don't do this, BitTorrent DIES...and torrents will fail to complete. And in the long run, that will "waste" lots of bandwidth with failed torrents.

If you have to, you can stop or pause a seeding torrent for awhile and restart it later. It's better for others to seed when there's NEED (no other seeds) than when there's lots of seeds.

So if you need to choose, stop the seeding torrents that have the most seeds and highest availability between all the peers first.

Running too many torrents at once is actually bad, because you'll be uploading at less than 1 KiloBYTE/second to other people. At that speed, it's painful. :P

The 2nd link in my signature tells decent settings to avoid that while still allowing a semi-reasonable number of torrents running at once.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It's just the time it takes at your present upload rate to upload as much as the size of the download. ...Assuming you're uploading the whole time of course.

You download a 200 MB file and upload at 20 KiloBYTES/second...then it will take about 6 hours to upload 200 MB to others trying to download that file. Slower you upload, the longer it would take. But likewise, it'd probably take at least a little longer to download it in the first place if you're uploading slowly while downloading it. Peers don't like to share to peers that don't share back. :P

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Obviously, you cannot download or upload faster than your line allows.

So you need to know what those limits are.

uTorrent's Speed Guide (CTRL+G) has a link to speed tests to test line speed.

BUT everything you have that uses the internet needs to be stopped (or at least not using the internet...much) while running the speed test!

Even uTorrent needs all the torrents paused or stopped and DHT disabled while doing speed tests!

Once you find out how fast your line is both down and up...you mostly use the UPLOAD speed to determine settings for uTorrent. The only thing download speed affects is maybe the max number of peers and seeds to connect to at once per torrent...you don't need more than probably 20 if you can only download at 30 KiloBYTES/second total. While if you could download at 1000+ KiloBYTES/second, you might want 100.

It's a BAD idea to go much higher on Global max and per torrent max than Speed Guide (CTRL+G) recommends. My speed guide alternative (2nd link in my signature) is more like the low end. You'd only possibly use lower than my suggestions IF you had a hostile ISP, really bad networking hardware or software, a very low monthly bandwidth quota, or trying to be nice to others sharing the same internet connection.

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