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Yet another "OMG 10kB/s PLzHElpME" thread..


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Hello. I've been checking this forum for quite a while now, and in the past it really helped me to get the most out of my bandwith when using uTorrent.

However, lately I've been having a weird problem, which I think it's common for quite a few people here.

Basically, I was using the previous (or previous than previous) ver. of uTorrent with no issues, combined with the optimal settings posted by Switek (sp?). I didn't update it and kept on refusing the "There's a new version available" pop up at the start. Up until that point, I had an average download speed of 70kB/s, with peaks of 180-200 kB/s at times.

About a week ago, I had to format my comp (thank you spyware!) so when downloading the uTorrent client, I went for the latest build (1.8.1, I reckon). Ever since, I can't get past 30kB/s when dowloading any torrent, with an average speed of 10kB/s, if that.

I did everything I possibly could, and I know you are tired of people making stupid threads without reading the FAQs and guides here, but I promise I did, to no avail. I'm really at a loss here, so I would be grateful for any direction you can point me to.

# Everything I've tried so far

Twinkered uTorrent settings back and forth, once and again. This includes but it's not limited to Max DL/UL Speed, Max Connections, Max Connections p/Torrent, net.max_half_open, DHT, UPnP, and so on.

Changed net.max_half_open at tcpip.sys, changed it back.

Poked some settings at my Local Area Network connection (in Windows Control Panel).

Unplugged and plugged back my modem.

As for the values, I've tried the optimal settings at Switek's thread, some other values I found over the net, Switek's values notched down a bit, some extreme values (2000 Max Connections, 1000 Connections p/torrent, and such), and lastly, the default values the Speed Guide from uTorrent sets.

# Color of the network status light: Green (although I get the yellow triangle saying No Incoming Connections for a few seconds when I first start uTorrent, but I'm assuming this is normal).

# Port checker from the Speed Guide writes: OK! Port 60178 is open and accepting connections.

# net.max_halfopen set to: 50

# Operating system installed: Windows XP Professional SP3

# Security software installed: AVG Anti-Spyware Software 7.5. No firewall. No AV.

# Modem model: I have an Arris Cable Modem, can't say which model since there are no labels or stickers visible. No router.

# ISP: The ISP's name is "FiberTel". I think the actual ISP provider is Prima.net.ar or something along those lines.

# Connection type and results obtained from the speed test: Here's the tricky part. Theoretically, my connection is 2MB Cable. That's 20xx/256 kb/s. Now, back when everything was working properly, I never bothered to run any speed tests. Since I started having these problems, I tried running a few, and found out an interesting fact: my download bandwidth limit seems to be somewhere around 1300 kb/s - 1600 kb/s. Upload bandwidth is just fine, 250 kb/s as it should be. However, when direct downloading from, say, some server in my country, I can achieve 180-200 kB/s often.

# Glasnost results: No throttling at all.

# Perhaps not-so-important information

I live in Argentina (South America). Over here, connections were always pretty lame, but I could use uTorrent just fine up until some days ago, regardless.

Also, I tried several different torrents, with different trackers, amount of seeds/leechers and so on, including Slackware and OO.org torrents. Downloading these last two torrents, never did I went higher than 30 kB/s.

Two more questions, on the side.

Say you have Torrent A with 10 seeds - 2 leechers, and Torrent B with 200 seeds - 100 leechers. Are you guaranteed to get higher download speeds from Torrent B? Simply put: does more peer connections mean higher speeds?.

Finally, could it be that the fact I have 10 or more torrents on queue has anything to do with these slow download speeds? (Obviously, their status shows "Queued", when not stopped manually by me).

By the by, at the moment I'm using the optimal settings provided in Switek's thread, for 256 kb/s upload.

I hope I made this thread a little clearer than the rest, and I appreciate any light you can shed on this in advance.


PS: Sorry for any grammar/spelling mistakes.

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More peer connections doesn't guarantee speeds. At extreme levels, too many peer connections can flood your connection -- not only reducing download speeds but potentially causing severe issues. A LOT of networking hardware and software cannot handle more than 100-1000 connections at once.

"net.max_halfopen set to: 50"

Try reducing that back to the default of 8...or even lower, possibly 1-4.

If you get the green light (unfirewalled) in uTorrent, you get incoming connections even if that's set very low.

For the most extreme encryption settings I know of, try this:


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Thanks for replying.

I tried going back to 8, and I also tried 4. I'm going to try 2 and see how it goes.

As for those encryptions settings, I'll give it a go as soon as I get some time.. but shouldn't I assume my ISP doesn't throttle traffic at all based on Glasnost's results?

EDIT: What about TCPIP.sys? Should I go back to 10? Lower? Does it even matter? I read somewhere that uTorrent and Azureus override the value on the .sys file, so it doesn't really make any difference.

EDIT: I tried net.half_open at 0 (that's zero) and download speed seemed to have gone up a bit, but it's probably just in my head. Back to peers connections.. if I'm set at 35, and I connect to say 2 seeds and 32/33, wouldn't that mean that I should raise the limit a bit? Or also in that case wouldn't necessarily mean higher speeds, even if it's raising the max peers connection by 10 or so?

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Patching Microsoft Windows TCPIP.sys is only necessary if you set uTorrent's half open connection limit (net.max_halfopen) higher than 8. Neither uTorrent and Azureus override the value on the TCPIP.sys file. If you set them too high, you are GUARANTEED connection problems -- possibly severe ones.

Do not leave net.max_halfopen set to 0 all the time, as while at 0 uTorrent does NOT update trackers or make any outgoing connections. This can get you banned from private trackers due to ratio issues (your ratio doesn't match what the tracker sees).

"Back to peers connections.. if I'm set at 35, and I connect to say 2 seeds and 32/33, wouldn't that mean that I should raise the limit a bit? Or also in that case wouldn't necessarily mean higher speeds, even if it's raising the max peers connection by 10 or so?"

You are confusing something, possibly badly. A Bittorrent connection is either to a peer or seed. Max connections per torrent count both peers or seeds...though while you're seeding a torrent ONLY peers will connect. (Seeds try to connect but are automatically disconnected and don't count against the limit while you're seeding.)

Unless you're on a 10+ megabit/second download and 1+ megabit/second upload line and/or running only 1 or 2 torrents, there's almost no reason to increase max connections per torrent beyond 50. Even 30 connections per torrent is overkill for low-end broadband.

Global max connections tends to be limited by more than just max speeds. Bad/weak networking hardware or software could effectively limit max connections to less than 100...going beyond that may cause slowdowns, disconnections, and complete windows crashes. Even "good" networking hardware and software probably can't handle over 1000 connections!

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I see.

Well, I tried using those really extreme values to counter throttling, but no luck. I don't think my ISP is shaping BT traffic, in any case.

I'm really at a loss here.

Unless you or someone else comes up with another idea, I'll have to stick to 10 kB/s download speeds. -.-

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No, not really. The modem I have is provided by my ISP in.. er.. I don't know the expression in english. They "lend" you the modem, sort of. So to try another one I would have to file a claim with my ISP and wait for the wonderful and wise tech support guys.

However, when I didn't have issues, I was using the same modem. I've been using it for the last 5 or so years.

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Why would it be a hardware-related issue if I was using exactly the same comp when everything was working fine? I mean, it could but I really don't think this has anything to do with the modem/comp.

In any case, I heard someone saying that my ISP always has had bandwidth or speed issues whenever they start advertising promos, like "Get 3 MB for just 9.99/mo!". He says that whenever they come up with one of those (like nowadays), a lot of users start having problems.

Sounded sensible enough to me, so I'm just chalking this up to bad swarms and the stupid ISP clogging because of so much traffic, since I already tried almost everything.

Anyways, thanks a bunch for the advice.

PS: What's a good indexer to use? Mininova?

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