What's the best P2P direct connect software for University networks?
September 12, 2008 5:43 PM   Subscribe

What's the best P2P direct connect software for University networks?

Which is the best software (not necessarily the most widely used) software for running a darknet on my University's network?


I'm off to Uni in a week and would like to share some of my files with the rest of the uni network, as external P2P programs aren't allowed at all.

I'm aware that most people use DC++, but I cant say I like it, its a bit clunky.

I recently discovered Alliance which looks promising. Anyone have any experience with this sort of thing?

Any tips at all on the subject would be greatly appreciated. I'm thinking of setting up a hub, running my (thankfully silent) PC 24/7 and inviting people with calling cards slipped under doors, or something...

Cheers :)
posted by ilumos to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
I've had success with WASTE, as long as you're competent enough to get it working for everyone.
posted by knowles at 5:51 PM on September 12, 2008

I used to love Direct Connect (and that's the network's proper name—DC++ is just a client)—was an op on a couple hubs for about a year and a half, in fact. But the thing about it is, the network admins can apparently spot its traffic really easily. That may have changed in the four years since I last had anything to do with Direct Connect, and depending on past usage at your university, your network admins there may not have seen much of it... but if it were me, I'd choose something newer and more discreet. (Sadly, too, 'cause DC is one of the easiest hubs to set up, esp. if you use the PtokaX hub software.)

Anyone who's had more recent experience with it care to weigh in, though? Maybe it's gotten stealthier since I last used it, in those early days of file-sharing and cease-and-desist letters.
posted by limeonaire at 6:20 PM on September 12, 2008

Doesn't matter what you use. If your network admins are half competent, they are going to see lots of incoming connections to your switch port and lots of encrypted traffic and put two and two together. Whether they care about this or not has very little to do with the particular encrypted protocol you're using.
posted by flabdablet at 6:48 PM on September 12, 2008

My campus uses DC++ (or Shakespeer on Macs). The network admins definitely know about it but I think they mostly ignore it.
posted by roomwithaview at 7:01 PM on September 12, 2008

Best answer: When I was in residence at university two years ago our entire building lived on DC++. Clunky, maybe, but in my experience it's the most widely used and people figure out how to work it very quickly.

And, if you're that person with a bunch of stuff up for grabs, everyone suddenly loves you.
posted by riane at 7:45 PM on September 12, 2008

Best answer: From past experience with working on projects with the residential housing network people, they can easily detect any sort of hub. As a matter of fact, there were daily/weekly/monthly campus-wide reports of high bandwidth users. The top 15 or so users would always be from the ResNet. These reports were pretty detailed, included traffic to the commercial internet, internet2 traffic, and on campus traffic.

It's risky to run a hub, especially if all MAC addresses have to be registered to a student before the computer can get on the network. Its one thing to be downloading copyrighted material and another thing to be the centralized hub for for this activity, especially when the networking people possibly have your student ID tied to your MAC addy.

But back then, i remember DC++ had the ability to set up mirrored hubs. You might want to look into getting several people acting as hubs, linking them together and then limiting the max clients of each server. But still, the network admin will easily find the hubs.

Happy filesharing and dont get caught
posted by aGee at 10:54 AM on September 13, 2008

Response by poster: Cheers guys, lots of useful info for me to work with.

I'll be off campus in university-hired halls so the network admins hopefully wont be live-in :P

I'll keep this updated with my findings.
posted by ilumos at 3:16 PM on September 15, 2008

As some others said, a competent network admin will see your traffic, I'd recommend more to not to overload the network during daytime hours (remember, you are at a university, be at least considerate in some way) and don't allow the RIAA to come a knockin' by using very public programs [limewire, public bittorrent trackers].

So, that being said,
this Might not be the answer that you're looking for, but a few kids at my college actually just used soulseek (this was about 2005-06). Yeah, the network is old and klunky, but a chat room was set up in there, and that was that.

It was a pretty small user base [I don't think it ever got to be more than 12 or so] for my campus, but soulseek was set up so your uploads are only accepted by your soulseek friend list. That, along with mytunes, and a sneakernet sufficed while at school.

Anecdotally, ones on campus who I know now just use private bittorrent trackers, AFIAK.
posted by fizzix at 8:13 AM on September 25, 2008

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