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Control over speed and port status


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Two situations which I encountered while trying to fix what I suspected to be an ISP throttling problem led me to think about these questions.

First, my port kept getting blocked, so I kept randomly changing it and manually setting the values in the router myself. Logically, if I hadn't updated the port in the router after changing it in UT, doing a "test portforward" in UT after restarting it would give an error. Most times it does. But once in a while, it can operate with the old setting still in the router - in fact, sometimes better. So my first question is:

1) How can the port be forwarded ok even when it isn't enabled in the router yet?

After experiencing that, I read through some posts and came across a suggestion to test on the OpenOffice download. I downloaded it - together with my current file which had speed problems. With my ideal settings, my max active was 1 so I had to increase it to 2.

My file was still barely much above 10kB/s, but OpenOffice rocketed effortlessly to 80+kB/s. The peer connection list was something like:

4(26) 35(170) - My file

18(234) 0(40) - OpenOffice

Why is my file sluggish yet OpenOffice can shoot like a rocket? Because of this, it led me to my second question:

2) When we see the speed being slow or go down, is it correct that its not always ISP throttling and may be the source connection(even though we are on the "Bad ISP" list)? If so, I suppose then we have no control over increasing the speed until the source increases their uploading speed?

I would like to clarify my curiosity and doubts. Thanks.

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OpenOffice is hosted by extremely fast seeds.

Even without hostile ISPs, either end...or really remotely the internet route between them ...could be crippled in some way (bad settings, overloaded by other activities, unstable OS, etc) which of course would give bad results. When that happens, it's not uncommon to wonder if it's your end or the other having problems. :(

The troubleshooting guides here are to eliminate what we can of known problems from YOUR end. Even after that, you're at the mercy of the other end/s.

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Since my speed dropped drastically about 2 weeks back, I've been playing around with all the different settings from enabling/disabling capabilities(DHT, LPD etc) to adjusting max and min connections and rates and changing port numbers, just to name a few.

With your explanation, it clears up the situation why I still don't get a consistent high speed download connection - only during occassional periods and some very rare super high speed times.

So logically, when we troubleshoot using the guidelines provided, if we're at the mercy of the other end's settings, then the only best way to catch a period when the speed is in a "generally higher range", is to just leave your pc on for a long time? (Which is what I'm doing and watching the speed fluctuate between the higher and lower speeds as I do other things.) We just have to wait till our connection links to peers with a generous seeding setting?

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It's not pure random. Many ISPs have horrid bottlenecks during peak evening hours, so torrenting during those times will suffer. Often you can roughly determine the quality of a torrent swarm within 5-10 minutes of starting the torrent...assuming uTorrent isn't already heavily loaded from already-running torrents.

BitTorrent's Tit-For-Tat logic should find generous peers on its own *IF* you are uploading a fair amount yourself. A "fair amount" is at LEAST 3 KiloBYTES/sec per active upload slot (an upload slot is uploading to a single person at a time). Nobody wants to receive <1 KB/sec, but many people have their BitTorrent clients set up to upload that slow to others because they split the upload too thinly between many torrents+peers.

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  • 3 weeks later...

According to what you say, I assume Utorrent did not include the same Tit-for-Tat coding? I did notice that kind of behaviour before but I didn't know it existed in Bittorrent.

Strangely, the behaviour of my torrent has changed again. I've got a setting that seems to not get any banned peers anymore. But my download speed has dropped to an average of <13kB/s( from 30kB/s just before that). I noticed the majority are using Utorrent and I changed my max upload for 256k setting from 22kB/s to 11kB/s.

Its been <13kB/s for almost the last 1 month for this huge torrent. But when I download smaller torrents beside it, that small torrent can shoot up into the 100-400kB/s range. Now I'm wondering why the peers and seeders have had their seeding speeds so poor for such a long time - especially for such a huge torrent? Only ocassionally I see the download speed go up to 40+ to 50+kB/s range.

I usually get a swarm size of about S:3(20) P:25(190).

And yes, I do find that by evening, the speeds does always drop and I believe its the ISP.

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