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Too many connections killing my router


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When ever I download a huge torrent 100gb in size or try and run 4 little torrents 200mb each my router stops working for a few minutes and every computer loses connection to it. This happens with all torrent clients I've used (vuze, bitcomet, utorrent etc)Ive read in other forums that my poor crappy linksys can't handle huge a amount of connections. How do I limit bitcomet and what should I set it to?

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If you limit the number of connections, you will slow yourself down while only postponing, not eliminating, the problem. This issue is generically caused by your router attempting to "help" you by memorizing connections. The theory is that connections you've used will probably be used again.

I've never been happy with this assertion, but bittorrent involves many hundreds of connections in the short term, most of which are never used again. This causes the router's memory to fill up, and some of them don't handle that gracefully at all. Limiting connections just means it takes a little longer to fill up.

The first thing you should to is check for a firmware update for your router, which may solve this problem. It's possible that there are 3rd party patches which will resolve it.

But you should be aware that SOHO routers are pretty cheap -- something like US$20 street sale price. I have never found any correlation between brand name and quality. Every brand seems to have those who swear by it and those who swear at it. This is an area where you simply do not get your money's worth, and a cheap router seems to work every bit as well or better than an expensive one.

It takes very little router hassle before that $20 looks like a really good investment.

You could also swap with somebody who doesn't bittorrent, the router is perfectly good for other normal uses.

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If you still want to meddle with your router, you should know that this depends on the maximum number of connections that your router can handle. You'll have to take a trial and error approach.

You need to determine first how many connections, on average, is the PC with BitComet using. You'd better make that count at a point when your router crashes, so that you are sure that the current number is high enough to crash your router.

(Keep in mind though, that I'm talking under the assumption that only one of your LAN's computers is using a BitTorrent client. If that's not the case then you'll need to make this count for every PC, at the time of the crash.)

So if you have an application which can show you the number of active connections, use that. If you don't you can download a free one out of the many out there (such as TCPViewor CurrPorts). Or just simply type at the command prompt:

netstat -an|find /c " "

to see the number of current connections.

Then you can go to BitComet-->Options-->Advanced-->network.max_connections and input a number, let's say, half as high as the number of connections you had when your router crashed.

If it still crashes, you can experiment by reducing the number of connections gradually, until you, hopefully, find a number where it runs smoothly.

But that's only if you feel like your current router is worth the trouble.

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