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BitComet Speed Guides

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#1 Scythe


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Posted 11 October 2004 - 11:47 AM

Welcome to UniteTheCows.com first, if you've never been here before.

We've received a lot of questions about slow speeds when using BC. In which case, here's a few things you should read before you further post on it.

How to Configure BitComet for the Best Possible Speed

Public vs. Private Trackers

XP SP2 Connection Limit

A trouble shooting guide

BitTorrent FAQ and Guide - Highly recommended

56K Modem Users Read

One Kind of Fix

If you've read these, and you still can't get help on the issue, then feel free to post. Also, if you're looking for help on your routers configuration, feel free to post with the specifics on the router.

Please don't message me personally about problems, but post them. We'll do our best to help you, and it's better if you have a group of people trying to help then just one.

Edited by Project-Buckfast, 27 June 2012 - 11:06 AM.

#2 Dragosani


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Posted 15 June 2005 - 06:36 AM

Your download speed in BitTorrent/BitComet, or any other P2P (Peer-2-Peer) application for that matter, relies on the upload speed of others - so do not assume that because you get xxKB/s when downloading from web sites that you will always get xxKB/s with BitComet. Slow download speeds are almost always because the upload bandwidth required to provide you with fast downloads just isn't there... so there is no way to magically speed it up, other than going out and buying everyone who you're downloading from (seeds/peers) a faster internet connection.

With that said, if you do the following you should end up with around the best possible speeds:

1) Configure Port Forwarding

BitComet requires you to be able to receive incoming connections. If you're behind a NAT router (this does not apply to modems) but don't have port forwarding configured properly, incoming connections will be stopped by your router (won't reach your computer) and you'll end up with speeds of only a small percentage of what you're capable of getting. You need to configure port forwarding so your router knows that the incoming connections are for BitComet and will be allowed through (forwarded) to your computer.

An easy way to see if your port forwarding is configured properly or not is to see if you're receiving incoming connections to BitComet by doing the following test...

Start downloading a torrent that has lots of seeds/peers (like 100+), wait 5 minutes then look in the Peers section (bottom left of BitComet). Under the 'Initiation' column on the bottom pane, look to see if some peers are listed as Remote or if they're all Local. Make sure you scroll all the way down the list and look at all of them.

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If you have a mix of Remote and Local like the picture above, it's a sign that your port forwarding is configured properly already (probably done automatically via UPnP) -- so skip to the next section.

Note: It doesn't matter how many Remote/Local connections you have, all that matters is you have both.

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If you only have Local initiated connections (and possibly also NAT Traversal connections) like the picture above, it means incoming connections are most probably being stopped by your router or firewall, so you need to configure port forwarding.

To configure port forwarding, open up BitComet and go to Options > Preferences.

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Here you need to enter a single "Listen Port" to be used for BitComet. It's best to use a listen port between 49152 and 65534 because they're classed as "Dynamic and/or Private Ports" by IANA, so nothing else should be using them by default and they're not the standard ones blocked by ISPs or trackers, but you can enter any other port you wish. It's strongly recommended that you don't use any between 1-5000, 6881-6999 or any listed on this page to avoid compatability problems. Again, it's best to choose a number between 49152 and 65534.

Write down your Listen Port number bef
ore clicking OK to exit out of BitComet's preferences.

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Next, in windows, click 'Start' then 'Run...'
Type 'cmd' and press enter.

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You should now be at a command prompt (a black box), so type 'ipconfig' and press enter. It should show you something similar to this:

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"IP Address" is your computers IP address that you need to forward the port to.

"Default Gateway" should be your routers internal IP address.

Write down both of these numbers and then you can close the command prompt window.

Now you have all the information required to configure port forwarding in your router. But because there are so many routers and they're all different, I can't explain step-by-step how to configure port forwarding in your exact model. Hopefully you can find your router on this list and view step-by-step port forwarding instructions. If it's not there, look for some by the same manufacturer (because they'll probably be similar to yours), read your user guide or just start browsing through it's configuration sections - look for something along the lines of "virtual server", "port mapping" or "port forwarding". If you don't know the username and password for your router, check your user guide or see the default password list.

When configuring port forwarding in your router, you need to do the following...
Log in to your router by entering the "Default Gateway" (the number you wrote down earlier from the ipconfig) into your web browser, like this:

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Then navigate to the section for port forwarding and forward the "Listen Port" that you entered in BitComet's preferences to your computers "IP Address" for TCP & UDP. If it asks for a 'start port' and 'end port', enter your Listen Port in both. If it doesnt have an option for "TCP & UDP" together, first do port forwarding for TCP then repeat the process and choose UDP the second time. This is a lot simpler than it sounds, for example, a screenshot showing how I'd configure port forwarding in my router can be found here.

After you've done that, restart BitComet and try the test for Remote connections again. If you set up port forwarding correctly you should now be getting some Remote connections -- along with greatly increased speeds.

NOTE: Another cause for a lack of incoming connections can be from an incorrectly configured transparent proxy (no configuration needed on the clients end) being run by your ISP which is not be sending your real IP address to trackers run on port 80. If this is the case, there isn't much you can do other than emailing your ISP and asking them configure the proxy to report your current IP address in HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR rather than the proxy's IP address. You can check proxy settings here (you may have a problem if doesn't display the IP address that your ISP has assigned you at the top of the page or as "X-Forwarded-For").

For these reasons, it's strongly recommended that you check for remote initiated connections with a torrent that uses a tracker on a port other than 80 (if it displays port 80 or no port at all in the tracker address then it uses port 80, so try a different one).

Please do not PM me asking for help configuring your port forwarding as these requests will not be responded to. Instead please ask your questions in the BitComet
Help forum, or better yet, the portforward.com forums: http://forum.portforward.com/

2) Allow BitComet access through any firewalls

Windows XP SP2 Firewall

Whenever 'Listen Port' is mentioned, it refers to the Listen Port you have chosen here in BitComet:
Options > Preferences > "Listen Port"

Go to Start > Settings > Control Panel > Network and Internet Connections > Network Connections.

Right click the Local Area Connection and choose Properties (if there is more than one use the one that says Connected underneath). Then click the Advanced tab.

Click the Settings button and go to the "Exceptions" tab. Click the Add Program button. Select BitComet then click OK.

Windows XP SP1 Firewall

Go to Start > Settings > Control Panel > Network and Internet Connections > Network Connections.

Right click the Local Area Connection and choose Properties (if there is more than one use the one that says Connected underneath). Then click the Advanced tab.

Click the Settings button at the bottom. In the Advanced Settings window, on the Services tab, click the Add button and enter the following information (you need to make 2 rules, one for TCP and one for UDP):

Description of service: BitComet TCP
Name or IP address: localhost
External Port: enter your 'Listen Port'
Internal Port: enter your 'Listen Port'
Select TCP
Click OK

Click the Add button again and enter the following information:

Description of service: BitComet UDP
Name or IP address: localhost
External Port: enter your 'Listen Port'
Internal Port: enter your 'Listen Port'
Select UDP
Click OK

Sygate Personal Firewall

Double click on the Sygate icon in your system tray then right-click BitComet and select Allow. If BitComet isn't listed there, start BitComet and it will appear.

Zone Alarm

Give your BitComet access and server permission to the trusted and internet zone (you should see 4 ticks in the program list beside BitComet).

Other firewalls and advanced rules

If you wish to configure 'Advanced rules' in your firewall for BitComet, BitComet.exe needs access through the following ports:

Local Ports - Outgoing Traffic: 1024-5000
Local Ports - Incoming Traffic: your chosen 'Listen Port'
Remote Ports - Outgoing Traffic: All
Remote Ports - Incoming Traffic: All

Local Ports - Outgoing Traffic: your chosen 'Listen Port'
Local Ports - Incoming Traffic: your chosen 'Listen Port'
Remote Ports - Outgoing Traffic: All
Remote Ports - Incoming Traffic: All

Instructions on how to configure hardware or software firewall(s) not mentioned here can be found at firewalling.com, or read your user guide.

3) Limit your upload speed to 80% of your maximum

With TCP/IP networking, every piece of data that is received must be acknowledged by a small outbound packet. So if you're uploading at full speed, your connection will have trouble letting the people who you're downloading from know that you've received the data they sent you and are ready for them to send some more - and your download rate will suffer. This is known as 'choking'.

Limiting your upload rate to around 80% of your real-world upload speed will leave enough room to send these acknowledgement packets.

To determine your maximum upload speed, do a speed test at dslreports.com/stest. Make sure you're not downloading/uploading anything while this speed test is working or
you will get false results. It will provide you with a download and upload speed at the top of the page in kbps (e.g. 1223 / 240). In this case your upload speed would be 240kbps, so divide this number by 8 to convert it to KB/s and then multiply it by .8 to get 80% of your real-world upload speed (in this case the final result would be 24).

Then just enter this number in BitComet: Options > Preferences "Global Max Upload Rate"

4) Increase the number of connections BitComet can use

By default, BitComet allows very few peer connections per task. Although this may give slower speeds when you first install BitComet, the stability is increased, which is probably the best way to release a software like this. After people have it installed an running stable, they can start to tinker.

A good deal of extra speed can usually be gained by simply increasing the following:

Options > Preferences > Advanced > Connection > "Maximum Connections per task"
Options > Preferences > Advanced > Connection > "Connections to keep per task"

I have set my "Maximum Connections per task" to 150 and my "Connections to keep per task" to 100 which gives me great speeds. But you should experiment to see what works best for your modem/router and internet connection.

Please note that more isn't always better and setting these values too high could give you slower speeds and/or make your modem/router disconnect. For example, some people will tell you to set the "Maximum Connections per task" to 1000... while it might work great for them, it could have a negative effect on your setup.

5) Select a Fast Tracker

Public trackers usually give poor speeds compared to Private trackers, but they have more content. Public trackers can be used by anyone and there are rarely any penalties towards those who choose not to upload, so they generally give slower speeds. Private trackers require (free) membership and members must maintain a certain download:upload ratio, so there are a lot more people uploading ('seeding') and downloads are much faster.

If you want faster download speeds, try using a private tracker that has a better seed to peer ratio (more people uploading).

A big list of torrent sites & trackers (both public and private) can be found here.


#3 Dragosani


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Posted 19 June 2005 - 03:28 PM

Windows XP Service Pack 2 (available here) includes an array of new security "enhancements". One of these so called enhancements limits the number of simultaneous incomplete outbound TCP connection attempts ('half-open connections') per second to 10. This is supposed to slow down certain viruses because their spreading strategy is to try to connect to a high amount of random IP numbers. While this limit will slow down viruses, it will also slow P2P (peer-to-peer) applications that establish lots of connections over a short period of time. BitComet is one such application.

When the half-open connection limit is reached, new connections will be queued until some of the current connections are established. The 10 half-open connection limit applies to Windows, not just BitComet, so if BitComet is using all 10 half-open connections and you try to load a page in your web browser it may take a long time to connect, or even time out.

Please don't get the half-open connection limit confused with BitComet's "Connections per task" — once connections are established they're no longer bound by this limit.

How do I tell if I'm reaching the 10 half-open connections limit?

Go to Start > My Computer > Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Event Viewer > System

Click the Event column so it's sorted by the Event ID and look for 4226, like this:

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If you right-click the 4226 warning and select Properties it will show you a brief description of the warning, like this:

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I'm getting this warning, so what do I do about it?

If you've received a 4226 warning, or want to ensure you won't get any, you can alter the maximum connection limit using LvlLord's TCPIP.SYS patcher available from the official website: http://www.lvllord.de

P2PForums.com download mirrors are available for v2.23d (1st May 2005):

Mirror 1 Adelaide, South Australia (Thanks to Dragosani)
Mirror 2 Adelaide, South Australia (Thanks to D-503)
Mirror 3 Texas, USA (Thanks to Dragosani)
Mirror 4 Texas, USA (Thanks to Dragosani)

What should I change the limit to?

It's recommended that you set it to 50, then reboot, start up your normal internet programs and check the Event Viewer. If you're still receiving 4226 warnings, run the patch again and increase the limit by small increments until you are no longer receiving warnings. I run 2-3 different P2P applications along with my web browser and a couple of chat programs all simultaneously so I have set mine to 100.

If you want to change the limit back to default(10), just run th
e patch again.

NOTE: Some Windows Critical Updates change this limit back to 10 (with no notification), so after installing windows updates you should either check the Event Viewer or run the patch to make sure you're not limited to 10 again.

So that's all?

Almost. BitComet has it's own internal limit, so to ensure BitComet is able to take advantage of the increased amount of connections, you need to enter the same amount in BitComet as your new Windows limit:

Options > Preferences > Advanced > Connection > "Max half-open TCP connections"

If you do a lot of web browsing or use several other internet applications while BitComet is running, try setting BitComet's limit a little under the maximum you've set for Windows (5 or 10)... This will leave a little headroom for other applications.

Now you're all done :)

Original information / instructions from the creator can be found here.

#4 mGa


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Posted 15 January 2006 - 06:53 PM

we get a lot of posts around here about speeds. the first thing you should do is read this sticky about speeds. scythe posted some good links and dragosani posted on how to configure your machine and router to run with BC. once everything is confgured correctly and you have remote connections we need to talk about trackers-> public vs private trackers.

let me start by saying our download speed depends on the upload speed of others in the swarm and also how the seed to peer ratio is within the swarm. more seeds=better speeds more peers=slower speeds

Public Trackers, better known as leech trackers, tend to have slower swarms than private trackers. leech trackers are full of people who could give two craps if you get the file, so they just hit and run. in other words once they get the file they are gone. since there is no ratio to be inforced people are to selfish or to scared to stick around and help seed. so what you end up with is torrents that have a huge number of leechers and just a few seeds. i see posts all the time where people say- "man, the health is 1000%" - well that is still not good when there is like 100 seeds and 2000 leeches. everybody is basically fighting over bandwidth.

Private Trackers are different in the sense that you have to be invited to join or lucky enough to sign up during an open enrollment period. these trackers have rules, and if you dont follow them you risk being banned. :banned: some people dont like being made to share, but i dont mind it a bit. i like the fact that leechers are forced to share. on private trackers, unless the file is brand new, the seeds almost always out number the peers (faster torrents). when you find a torrent you want that is a little bit old, there is almost always a seed hanging out trying to increase his ratio, so you dont find a bunch of old, dead torrents. private trackers also recruit people with very fast uplaods to be designated uploaders, thus increasing the speed of the torrents.

if you want a good place to keep up with the torrent scene and have a good chance of getting invited to a private tracker, then check out The PeerGroup. quite a few private trackers have a section there that check is checked on a regular basis, plus its a good community. :wink1: