gnome-bittorrent is an unsatisfactory bittorrent client

Sander van Loon svloon at
Thu Sep 15 10:32:35 CDT 2005

This is my first post to this mailing list. First of all, I'd like to
thank the Ubuntu developers for putting together a good distribution.
I'm using the Breezy preview release and I think that it is one of the
best Linux distro's I've ever used. Secondly, I'd like to bring up the
problem of BitTorrent users on Linux.

Ubuntu currently uses gnome-bittorrent. Unfortunately that program
seriously lacks features. The most important thing is that it doesn't
even ask which port it should use. So if you're behind a router like me,
you're hosed, and you'll be punished with slow download speeds no faster
than 10-20 KB/s, even if the torrent has hundreds of seeds and peers. I
tried to forward the default port for bittorrent, 6881, but it didn't

Second problem is that it has no UPnP, so that router users wouldn't
need to forward ports if their router supports UPnP.

Third is that it doesn't allow download speed limiting. This is quite
essential for those who share internet connections. I'm behind a router
with two PC's, my own PC and my brother's PC. If I can't limit my
download speed BitTorrent could theoretically consume a huge amount of
download bandwith, which could cause my brother a lot of lag if he would
play a game over the internet on his PC.

Conclusion is, if you're behind a router and want to use BitTorrent on
Ubuntu, the default client gnome-bittorrent is unusable. I'm forced to
use Azureus. Azureus supports UPnP, it gives me very good download and
upload speeds, and it allows download capping. It's downside is that it
uses Java, it uses a lot of system resources and that it suffers from
too much features, you can't call it a simple program.

What Ubuntu needs is a BitTorrent client which has the UPnP and download
limiting features of Azureus, and the simplicity of gnome-bittorrent.
Right now, BitTorrent users coming from Windows, who are used to great
BitTorrent clients like BitComet, will be very disappointed in Ubuntu's
BitTorrent capabilities. I hope the Ubuntu developers can think of a
solution for this problem.

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