November 1, 2005 3:27 PM   Subscribe

bittorrent filter: where are the best bittorrent sites?

(Preferablly the ones that have alot of *stuff* but not alot of people know about.
posted by flipmiester99 to Computers & Internet (33 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Oink's Pink Palace rules music-wise. Mail me for an invite.
posted by koenie at 3:40 PM on November 1, 2005

I find that simply checking the "bittorrent" tag on and picking through the most recent sites posted there does a pretty good job of getting me what I'm looking for via new-ish bittorrent trackers.
posted by authenticgeek at 3:44 PM on November 1, 2005

How would a bit torrent site have a lot of stuff and not be readily known? Isn't the stuff on a site and the availability of said stuff in fact dependant on the number of users of that site w/r/t the protocol?
posted by xmutex at 3:45 PM on November 1, 2005

UKNova is supposed to be pretty good, but I've never been able to wrangle an invite. ;)

You could try FileList, mininova, and (my personal favourite) indietorrents.
posted by purephase at 4:04 PM on November 1, 2005

I'm sure that the sites "not a lot of people know about" are like that for a reason; closed memberships, and probably anti-talk "legislation". Also, because bittorrent works by having everyone share with everyone else, it usually helps to have a lot of people 'know' about the site.

Personally, I like using mininova as mentioned above by purephase, it does the trick. There are other sites, but it has lots of stuff.
posted by lowlife at 4:16 PM on November 1, 2005

To get onto uknova just keep trying until it shows a signup form.
posted by pixie at 4:42 PM on November 1, 2005

Response by poster: koenie....How do i get your email address?
posted by flipmiester99 at 4:42 PM on November 1, 2005

Response by poster: koenie...nevermind, got it.
posted by flipmiester99 at 4:45 PM on November 1, 2005

This link from updates pretty regularly.

I've found it to be pretty reliable.
posted by k8t at 4:53 PM on November 1, 2005

Thanks pixie! (I don't use UKNova much, and they've deleted my account three times because of that, I think. I was very disappointed that sign-ups were closed when I tried.)
posted by smackfu at 5:12 PM on November 1, 2005

Depends on what you're looking for, but torrentspy is generally chock full 'o stuff... Demonoid is also good but has been having issues lately. (Both are dotcoms)

Another very popular/congested one is isohunt.
posted by twiggy at 5:16 PM on November 1, 2005

I'm a big fan of
posted by LunaticFringe at 6:08 PM on November 1, 2005

I'd reccommend checking this link on It's a list of the top mainstream torrent indexing sites, updated frequently. Note that a couple of the sites on the list are actually search engines, which come in handy if you're looking for something in particular (isoHunt, Yotoshi).

Here are their picks of the moment, in order of decreasing chewing satisfaction:

The Pirate Bay
BT Sites
posted by killdevil at 6:17 PM on November 1, 2005 [1 favorite]

Can I piggyback on this question? My Bittorrent speeds are superslow. I tried to clear this up at MetaChat but nothing helped. Anyone who has advice, I'd appreciate it.
posted by dobbs at 6:49 PM on November 1, 2005

Dobbs: Are you behind a router or a firewall? For some reason, only about half of the torrents on any given site work for me, and I've been told that it's because I'm behind a static IP router.
That's also why I'm not trying to wrangle an invite to indietorrents or Oink, despite having too much music to share...
posted by klangklangston at 7:59 PM on November 1, 2005

i'm a big Mininova fan.
posted by amberglow at 8:07 PM on November 1, 2005

This site remains an excellent index of new and standby torrent providers, and offers a search of all of them.
posted by scarabic at 8:19 PM on November 1, 2005

Slow speed issues:

From what I know about Bittorrent and some of the more ratio intensive sites (like oink and indietorrents) the key to getting better speeds is to ensure that non-standard ports are used in your Bittorrent client and that if you are behind a router, make sure that the ports are forwarded to the workstation running the client software. Also, on some trackers, your initial speeds will always be low until you establish a certain ratio above a certain transfer limit. It may take some time, but eventually you'll get the top speeds (or seed priority) while downloading.

Also, (and especially on indietorrents) you typically have to leave torrents seeding for a considerable amount of time. I always try to hit a 1:1 ratio on all torrents.
posted by purephase at 8:20 PM on November 1, 2005

I'll second or third If I can't find what I'm looking for on there I try which seems to have a wider selection, but less comments. The only problem with is that half the comments are in german.

I hate to do this but I've wanted an invite to for so long! If anyone could send me an invite I'd love you forever!
posted by meta87 at 8:25 PM on November 1, 2005

I have a firewall but have "disabled" it for Bittorrent as per the instructions on the MeCha link I provided. (I also followed all the other instructions there). Despite this, my speeds are horrible. I've been downloading a 2.99 Gig file for 7 days and it's telling me it's got 16 days remaining. Painful.

The transfer speed column of the regular Bittorrent software for OS X tells me

1.27 GiB ^ 1.6KiB/s
1.81 GiB < .4kib/sbr>
(The < should be pointing down.)br>
I assume the first number is how much I've transfered so far and the second number (on the right of the ^) is how fast.

It's ridiculous. I can't imagine why people use this service. I've never downloaded anything so slowly in my life. I'm on a "fast' cable modem.

To contrast, I'll be able to get similarly sized files on Limewire considerably faster (an hour or two)--however, the pickins' is terrible there.

I leave stuff up to seed that's already downloaded.
posted by dobbs at 8:51 PM on November 1, 2005

Response by poster: Thanks for all the great posts!!!!!!!!!!!!
posted by flipmiester99 at 8:55 PM on November 1, 2005

dobbs, what client are you using? Download azureus. Then go to settings and click on Nat Test. (I think this is right, I don't have it installed here and can't check)

Choose the port number that you forwarded on the router.
If it says that everything is ok, then the port is open and everything should be working. If it gives you an error, you know the problem; your router is not forwarding the open port to your machine.

If you are sure that it isn't the router, try plugging your computer straight into the cable modem. (You will have to do ipconfig /release and then ipconfig /renew in the command prompt to get a new ip). Then see if your speeds are good. If so, it's the router. If not, it is probably a software firewall. Could be the windows xp firewall or another you have installed.

Hope this helps! (Golley I hope you are on windows, if not let me know and i can modify the instructions.) Also forgive me if you know how to do some of this stuff, I'm not sure how tech savvy you are.
posted by meta87 at 9:04 PM on November 1, 2005

I'm not tech savvy at all and am on OS X.
posted by dobbs at 9:07 PM on November 1, 2005

posted by meta87 at 9:12 PM on November 1, 2005

well you could still try connecting your computer straight to the cable modem and see what kind of speeds you get. I'm guessing it is a problem with the router since os x doesn't come with a firewall installed.

Also, what kind of router do you have and did you forward a port to your mac?
posted by meta87 at 9:14 PM on November 1, 2005

Okay, I dl'd Azureus and am running it. I did a Nat test on 6881 and it gave me an error so I tried 6882 and it said OK!. Now I'm trying to dl a 348 mb.

Oh, it just threw up this warning: if you have a firewall, please check that you have port 6881 UDP open. Decentralised tracking requires this.

Okay, so I went into my firewall and added 6881 to the UDP.

Azureus is telling me the 348 mb file will take 7days and 2h. There are 35 seeds and 25 peers. My speed is 2.1Kbs.

I don't have a router. My computer is connected right to my modem and when I run a test I get: 4.43 MBps for download and 1.18 Mbps for upload.
posted by dobbs at 9:22 PM on November 1, 2005

Well, let the torrent go for a bit and see if it improves, torrents do start out slow. What firewall are you using?
posted by meta87 at 9:47 PM on November 1, 2005

Sorry to hijack this thread btw, maybe we should take this into email dobbs. Email me if you want to try to fix this sucker.
posted by meta87 at 9:48 PM on November 1, 2005

for your firewall/router issues:
posted by mookieproof at 6:37 AM on November 2, 2005

Man, I'm surprised somebody hasn't MeTa'd this thread yet! Seems pretty sketchy to me, and considering some of the completely weak sauce callouts/thread complaints we've seen, you'd think this would be a huge target.

dobbs, another good client for OSX is Bits on Wheels, you may want to try giving it a shot. Per your speed issues, just try to open up a large range of ports (I think the BitTorrent ports are something like 6800-6900 or some such) - the Sharing prefpane does allow you to enter ranges of ports.

I used to be on a Mac-oriented torrents site called Torrents Kick Ass, but I think it's down now...I rarely torrent myself so I haven't checked it in a while.
posted by cyrusdogstar at 7:06 AM on November 2, 2005

dobbs, my guess is that your ISP is throttling the standard torrent ports. Go through the prefs and move all your ports into a new range.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:46 AM on November 2, 2005

I'm guessing it is a problem with the router since os x doesn't come with a firewall installed.

... of course it does.
posted by kindall at 10:50 AM on November 2, 2005

I called my ISP and they insist they are not against bittorrent and are not doing anything to the ports. To clarify, they asked which ports in particular and I told them 6881-6889. They put me on hold and then came back and said they'd checked with every other tech support person there and all said bittorrent works fine and they're not doing anything to the ports. Must be something on my end, they say.

mookieproof, thanks for the link but my modem's not on the list there, nor is mac os x (my firewall) and I don't have a router.

I left Azureus on all night downloading and it's getting the same speeds as my other bittorrent program (hovering around 1kB/s).

Overnight it downloaded 3% of a 2.93 gig file and tells me there is 32 days left.

Thanks for your help, all, but I'm gonna throw in the towel. This thing's nothing but frustration.
posted by dobbs at 2:49 PM on November 2, 2005

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