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Hi guys! Im new to this torrent stuff and i see comments on here about people not seeding. I have not seen anything on how to seed or what it is exactly. I definately dont want to piss anyone off, so if someone could tell me how to seed and what it is...i would greatly appreciate it


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Seeding means that you leave the task running after it's finished downloading. It's that simple, really, you don't have to do anything fancy. The nature of the BitTorrent protocol is that even when you're downloading and have not reached 100% you're still uploading to others at the same time the pieces of file you've already downloaded. Hence the way we achieve great speeds on bitorrent; everybody is downloading from, and uploading to virtually everybody at the same time, to put it simply.

Now, as you might know, most people have much lower upload speeds as compared to their download speeds. So when their download reaches 100%, they will have uploaded much less of the file. So, if everyone would just stop the task after they finished downloading it, the swarm for that torrent would quickly run out of seeds (those who have the complete file) and would die, eventually. This is why you should keep the task running until you reach at least a ratio of 1-2 or higher. This way you give back to the community what you were freely given.

People who don't seed are called leeches (you get the analogy, right?) :D . While on open trackers you probably won't have somebody knocking at your door if you don't seed, on the private trackers your download/upload ratio is closely monitored. Nevertheless, if you enjoy what you have downloaded you should return the favor and say thanks by seeding it, in order for others to be able to enjoy it, too.

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There's some really unfortunate confusion of terminology, and it's all Bram's fault. Bram Cohen, the guy who invented the Bittorrent protocol, needed terms to indicate those peers who had all of a file, versus peers who were still trying to obtain pieces of the file.

He chose to call them "seeds", and "leechers", respectively. He did not mean "leechers" in a pejorative sense. The trouble is, it was already pejorative. That term had long been used in electronic bbs operation, for someone who downloaded files from the system, but never uploaded anything. (This was mostly in the modem-based, pre-internet days).

Hopeless confusion has resulted. Why couldn't he have called them "hunters", or "gatherers", or something that didn't already mean somebody who took without giving in the context of file-sharing? Well, too late now. You have to infer from context whether "leecher" is being used in the pejorative sense, or the benign sense.

For that reason, a lot of us have dropped the benign usage altogether, and just use "peers". Now you have to infer from context whether we mean all peers, or just peers who are not seeders. Meanwhile a leecher is always bad. You'll have to decide for yourself how you want to handle the problem.

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