What is a Torrent and How to use them.

torrentTorrents are the most popular protocol for the transfer of music, videos, ebooks,software and other content on the world wide web.  There is a great deal of content available through torrents.  

Some Well Knows Torrents

The Bittorrent is one of the most popular.  Bittorrent breaks big files down into small pieces. The files are then downloaded, piece by piece, from one or many different sources.  Since the files are broken down into tiny bites, you use less bandwidth. Which means your downloads move a lot faster.   

Bittorrent is a decentralized peer to peer (P2P) distribution of content which uses the upload bandwidth of each individual who is downloading the content, and those who have downloaded, to transfer the content.

  • No central server
  • Content is distributed by active users
  • Transferred content is an exact copy of the original
  • Content associated with a torrent can not be altered
  • Downloads may be stopped and re-started

uTorrent also known as both “u-torrent” and “micro torrent”,  is another popular torrent tool today. uTorrent has all the functions a torrent downloader will ever need, and it only requires 1 MB of hard drive space and memory. uTorrent has all the downloading and seeding performance of its competitors, but with minimal impact to the rest of your computer’s speed.

Deluge Torrent: Linux and OS X people: rejoice! Here is a software that is very friendly towards your operating systems, and many readers say good things about this product. It has a clean metallic-but-soft interface design, and most any statistic and metric you might ever want to see about your uploads and downloads. Like most torrent clients, the product is free, and built/supported by programming enthusiasts who truly believe in file sharing.

 WikiHow has a step by step listing of How to Download Torrents.   About .com is another good website with beginners guides to bittorrent file sharing.  


General Torrent Search Sites

These sites are among the most popular torrent search sites and offer large indexes of torrents and helpful features to verify, filter and sort among search results.  Any one of these sites will serve your goal of finding a clean, real and healthy torrent for the content you want.

Since these are public torrent sites and, for the most part, allow anyone to upload, fakes can make their way into the listings. Make sure your Default Browser has an ad block filter: Chrome ad block add on. Firefox ad block filter.

KAT : is the top pick at Gizmo’s due to its large index of torrents and verified torrents as well as the comment, filter and sort features that they offer.   They index over 9 million torrents, including over 1 million verified torrents.  Tabs on the torrent page allow viewing of the files, trackers and comments.  KAT offers many features to help in your search, they are responsive to user feature requests and are always improving.

TORRENTZ: is another comprehensive search engine that lists over 14.5 million torrents and has almost 3 million  torrents that have been verified to be clean.  Torrentz also has the nice feature of listing all trackers for a torrent, not just the ones embedded in the torrent file, though this is not that important in torrents now.  One drawback is that they do not host the torrent files and one must go to other sites for the download.  Be careful with the sites you choose to go to.

BitSnoop: This is a metasearch site that indexes over 17.8 million torrents from 369 trackers.  Although they do not list a number that I could find, they appear to have a large listing of verified torrents. This site is extremely fast at returning search results.   They also have a TV Finder which lists all shows alphabetically with links to all torrents for each show.

Torlock: advertises that all the torrents there are verified to be clean and real.  Their listing now has over 500,000 verified torrents. A negative is the lack of comments or ratings for the quality of the content.  However, for newer users, this is a good site to start your searches to ensure a clean download.  Caution:  Only click on the word “torrent” on the download page.  The other links are scams.  Also do not choose a “sponsored” result. Thanks to freestuffrocks for this site.

H33t: (204.16.200.51) indexes over 5 million torrents and monitors the torrents that are uploaded through their site.  As long as you stick to the torrents that are h33t uploads, you are pretty safe.  The site looked to be ad free when I disabled ABP, but on one occasion I did get a couple popups and there is a scam download link.  All in all, it is pretty clean, but I would suggest keeping ABP enabled.

The PirateBay: is probably the most well known torrent search site.  They list about 3.7 million torrents.  TPB has an excellent filtering system and clean torrents can be found quickly in the search results by looking for a skull image next to the torrent.  The one drawback now is that they are switching to magnet links only and given the issues that some of the bittorrent clients have with magnet links, this is a negative.

TORRENT US:  is a clean site (no ads and scam links) meta search site that culls results quickly.  They index several of the sites on this page and have over 5.5 million torrents listed.  They also allow filtering of the sites at the user’s discretion.  I found the layout to be very user friendly.  The drawbacks are that they, like Torrentz, only provide links to the sites and do not host the torrents.  So one must be careful at each particular site.

TorrentTo: is a search site that culls results from a large number of torrent search sites.  Nice feature is that you can choose the sites to include in the search (this is saved in the site cookie for future use).  The results show the pages at the sites and the sites can be togggled up top.  Not my personal preference for viewing results as I prefer to see all the results at once, but this type does appeal to some users.  As usual, caution needs to be taken at the sites from which results are shown.  Thanks to Nero  for this site.

ExtraTorrent: has 1.5 million torrent in its listing.  It is not the largest listing, but they seem to have many of releases and no duplicates.  A good number of the torrents I checked were from a trusted or verified uploader.  Unfortunately, this is not shown  in the search results.  This site has gained popularity with a number of users on the web and is a good source.  Avoid the “Direct download” link.

isoHunt.com: is a comprehensive torrent search site and lists over 8 million torrents from its own trackers and 582 other sites.   isoHunt is supposed to be offered only as a “lite” version in the USA  and that does not compare to the real isoHunt or any of these sites.  Many users like the layout and information at isoHunt and it would be a good choice for those that have accesss to the full version.  Note:  I have seen a lot of users around the web have trouble with fakes from isoHunt.

Unique Torrent Search Sites

These sites cater to special niche interests and stand out for their attention to that niche and their clean offerings.

EZTV  (https) is the site for all things television.  It is the biggest and past and easiest to use for TV offerings.  In addition to torrents they have a countdown list as to when shows are to return to original broadcasts, a show list indicating the status of a TV show (ended; pending; airing etc.), TV news and a calendar of shows being broadcast.

Coda.fm is a music albums bittorrent site.  There is a good deal of information on the artists and albums.  All listings are verified to be clean and real.  If you are looking for a public, music only, bittorrent site, then this is the place to look.  It is an ad free site.  The amount of listings is still quite small, being in the thousands.

Take.fm is the sister site to Coda.fm, specializing in movies.  It is similar to Coda in layout and all of its listings are also verified to be clean and real.  At this time there appears to be just shy of 2000 listings.  Hopefully the site listings will grow as time goes by as a clean movie search site is needed in bittorrent.

Podtropolis lists only iPod compatible content.  I could not find statistics, but there appears to be a good amount of content listed (although certainly less than the popular sites above).  This is not available to USA users (where I am).   I was able to access through a proxy service.

YIFY Torrents This is the site of a release group that has an excellent reputation for quality rips with small file size.  All torrents are those of the release group.  All the releases here should be clean and real.

NyaaTorrents is the site to check out for Anime.  The torrent links in blue are A+ in quality, meaning they are the best copy available.  The torrent links in green are from trusted uploaders. Thanks to Capcapper for this site.

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