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The Importance of Being Connectible

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  • The Importance of Being Connectible

    The Importance of Being Connectible:

    When it comes to torrents, being connectible can go a long way in helping your ratio. Connectivity is directly related to port forwarding, your router, and incoming torrent connections. Here's how it works:

    You upload a new torrent to After going through the upload page and adding the torrent to your client, the client connects to the tracker to do the following:
    1. Tell the tracker it is going to begin seeding a torrent.
    2. Ask the tracker if there are any peers it doesn't know about.

    Normally, no one has downloaded the torrent from the site between the time that you upload the torrent and when you add it to your client. So your client will now wait, for 45 minutes (or however long it's been told to wait), until it will connect back and ask for more peers.

    Now suppose someone downloads your torrent from the site after you added the torrent to your client. Normally, the person's client will ask the tracker for peers, to which the tracker will return your IP address to connect to. That client will then connect to your client, using the IP address and port number it got from the tracker pertaining to your client and the port it accepts incoming connections on. This is where being connectible comes into play. We'll assume your IP address is and your port number used for torrenting is 3058.

    When the peer attempts to connect to you, your router has to know what to do with the incoming connection. It receives an incoming connection from the peer, on port 3058. If you have your port forwarded to your client correctly, that is, you've told the router what to do with incoming data on a specific port, the router knows to send anything coming in on port 3058 to the computer your client is running on. Now, if you are not connectible, the router doesn't know what to do with items coming in on port 3058, so they are discarded, and the other peer isn't able to connect to you.

    If your port isn't forwarded correctly, the peer who just added your torrent to their client will have to wait for 45 minutes, until your client updates with the tracker, and gets the new peer's IP address and port to connect to. If the peer is connectible, you will then make an outbound connection to them, and it will connect successfully. Outbound connections aren't normally blocked by a router, unlike incoming ones, this is why a client doesn't need a port forward for outgoing connections. This is also why you can still seed even if you aren't connectible.

    Here's how not being connectible will hurt you. If you are seeding a torrent in a large swarm, and a new peer comes online, he will attempt to make connections to peers. If you aren't connectible, you will have to wait (at max) 45 minutes until your client learns of their existence, before you can start uploading data to them. During this time the peer is getting data from other peers, but not you. You won't get nearly as much upload than if you were connectible. Depending on the size of the torrent, your client may not get any upload for that peer, because he will have completed the torrent before your client even knew he was present.

    The absolute worst case scenario is when both peers aren't connectible. Neither peer will be able to connect to the other, and both will sit without connection indefinitely.

    The Art of Connectivity:
    When you attempt to become connectible, there is quite an art to the overall process. Depending on your ISP and country, different measures can allow for a successful setup.
    One such way is by trying both public & private ports. Try ports in the 4915265535 range, as well as 0-19151. Some universities only block a certain range, while other's block all.
    If you have a somewhat tricky ISP, they could monitor for bitorrent traffic, and then disable the port you are using after they detect such traffic. Set your torrent client to use a random port every time (this will require a UPnP setting if you are behind a firewall).

    Becoming Connectible:
    Start by going to and testing the port number you are using for your torrent client. If it fails, you need to move on. If it succeeds, you either don't have a router, or have already forwarded your ports. Do not use the connection tracker, it isn't very reliable at the moment, and can report false positives and negatives.

    If you aren't connectible, and want to become so, try out . Find your router model number, and a resulting step by step guide can be found on becoming so. When you are forwarding your ports, be sure to only forward the TCP part of your port, unless you are going to be using DHT for public trackers, which utilizes UDP (so forward both TCP and UDP then).

    When you forward a port from your router to your computer, your router has to know the internal IP address of your computer. This address normally looks like or Router's normally implement DHCP, which will most likely give your computer a different IP address every time it connects to the network. As you can imagine, this makes it difficult to forward a port to your computer if it keeps changing. The easiest way around this is to set your computer to use a static IP address, that is, one that doesn't change. The easiest way to do this is to make your computer use an address that is outside of the range of IP addresses your router hands out through DHCP (your router might give out IP addresses of -, in which case you could use as your address). The importance behind using an IP address outside of this range is to ensure two computers don't get the same address, which would cause a lot of trouble on the network.

    To set a static IP in windows:
    1. Open Windows Start menu.
    2. Open Control Panel.
    3. Classic view: Open Network Connections
    Category view: Select Network and Internet Connections, and then Network Connections.
    4. Double-click on your active LAN or Internet connection.
    5. Click Properties.

    This opens the Local Area Connections Properties window.
    6. In the General tab, highlight the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) item, and click Properties.

    This opens the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) Properties window.

    7. In the General tab, click Use the following IP address, and enter:
    - IP address. The static IP address you want to assign to this computer. (remember this needs to be something outside of the range your DHCP uses.)
    - Subnet mask. Subnet mask used by your router.
    - Default gateway. IP address of your router's default gateway.
    8. In Use the following DNS server addresses, enter all the IP addressses for the DNS servers your router uses.
    9. Click OK.
    10. Click OK to close each window.
    11. Restart your computer.
    12. Then, check your IP address again, to make sure that the changes were applied.

    Becoming Connectible with DD-WRT Firmware:
    If you are using a router with DD-WRT firmware on it, you do not need to set a static IP address on your client's computer. You can set a static DHCP lease. Basically, the router will always dynamically assign the same IP address to your computer.

    1. Find your computer's MAC (hardware) address. Click Start, click Run, type in "cmd" without the quotes and hit enter. type in "ipconfig /all" without the quotes and hit enter. Look for the Adapter that gives you your internet (normally "Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection:" but it can be different.)

    2. Go to your router's homepage (usually , or some derivative)
    3. Click on "Services."
    4. Scroll down to "Static Leases" and add your computers MAC address, the ho***ame you want to assign the computer (a.k.a a nickname), and the IP address you want that computer to use.

    5. Click Apply.
    6. Refresh your computer's IP address (unplug and replug, disable and enable, restart, whatever you want to do to get a new IP from the router).

    Double Port Forwarding
    Some internet setups look something like this:

    The only problem is, most of the time the "Cable/DSL Modem" is also a router. If you have forwarded your ports correctly through the router, but still aren't connectible, this could be your problem. Google your modem's model number to find if it can also act as a router. This presents a problem to port forwarding because you have two devices acting as a router in series. To get around this problem you have three available options:
    1. Double port-foward your connection
    2. Disable the routing function of the mode, and bridge the connection from your modem to your router.
    3. Disable the routing function of the router, plug the ethernet cord into one of the LAN ports on the (now-disabled) router, and allow the modem to be the only router on the network.

    Double port-forwarding is fairly simple.
    1. Plug your computer directly into the modem.
    2. Browse to your modem's IP address.
    3. Forward a port (preferably the same one you are forwarding through the router) from the modem to the router. In order to do this you will need to look at the WAN IP address your router gets from the modem. This can be found in the router's browser page, but varies among manufactures.
    4. After the port is forwarded, reconnect the modem to the router and test your connectibility again.

    Bridging a Connection.
    1. Depending on your modem and router the setup will be different, but the main goal is to turn the modem into "just" a modem, which translates the cable/dsl "signal" to a network "signal", which then runs into your router. There are many guides on google for this.

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