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Listening Port + VPN

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Dear Experts,

I am using BitComet 1.09; Windows XP; Norton Internet Security; ADSL with an download speed of 8000kbps and an upload of 7000kbps. The computer connects to the internet via a wire into the wall at the hospital where I work.

BitComet and Skype are not allowed so, to get round these blocks, I use Strong VPN and everything works OK. Except that the Listening Port is blocked.

I have checked in Norton Internet Security and the Firewall is properly configured to allow BitComet.

Despite the Listening Port being blocked, BitComet still manages to work quite well. It is currently downloading a raft of torrents at an aggregate speed of 865kB. Do I need to unblock the listening port and, if so, how do I do that through a VPN? The VPN says my assigned IP is

Any advice would be much appreciated. In advance, please accept apologies if question is improperly phrased. I did look on the forum to see if there were Listening Port problems associated with VPN and couldn't see. If such does exist, a point in the right direction much appreciated.

In one request for info, you asked for a snap of the summary age. Here is mine.

Save location: C:\Downloads\The Mentalist Season 3 Complete 720p

Files size: 26.23 GB Selected: 26.23 GB

Progress: 75.3% ( 6.47 GB left )

Torrent: C:\Program Files\BitComet\torrents\The Mentalist Season 3 Complete 720p.torrent

InfoHash: d721b85a9cc81dc761dc453c31e52294d6481e13 Piece size: 4 MB

Comment: Torrent downloaded from torrent cache at https://torcache.net

Tags: Video

Connections: Seeds: 16(Max possible: 26) Peers: 42(Max possible: 776) Connecting: 5

Download Rate: 337 kB/s, Downloaded bytes: 655.85 MB, including LT seed: 0 kB/s(0 B), ED source: 0 kB/s(0 B)

Upload Rate: 274 kB/s, Uploaded bytes: 677.31 MB

Created time: 2012.04.19 17:14:32

Finish time:

Time elapsed: 1day 7:07:26(download only) 1day 7:07:26(total)

Downloaded: 20.05 GB ( 187 kB/s)

Uploaded: 9.67 GB ( 90 kB/s)

Publish date: 2011.05.20

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Your connection is almost certainly firewalled. Just about all institutional connections such as yours are done via a private router which has a firewall to block unrequested incoming connections. These are, of course, exactly what you forward a port in order to receive. Your network admin probably won't forward a listen port just for you, and probably has policies in place forbidding P2P in the first place. Assuming that's so, your only recourse is VPN.

Your VPN service doesn't offer a clear and forthright answer to whether it purports to work with P2P, which means that it probably does not.

With most VPN services, you establish your virtual network connection into a server. From that server, your transaction is forwarded as if it were the server's own, originated at that server instead of at your computer. Many people can use the server at the same time, in the same way. For you and all of them, your ostensible IP addresses will be that of the server. So far, so good.

P2P means that peers will try to contact you, and most of those contacts will be unasked-for. That is, THEY call you instead of YOU calling them. On an ordinary connection, all incoming traffic is intended to go to you. But on this VPN server, how is the server to know which of the many clients connected to it, that this incoming traffic is intended for? There's no way to know who this incoming traffic should be forwarded to.

It takes extra hardware and networking to get 2-way VPN to operate, as you can hopefully understand. This isn't cheap, so cheap VPN services don't do it. You would need to use a service specifically set up to do this. In your shopping, a good hint is that if you can't find an answer within a couple of minutes, the service doesn't support it. If the FAQ doesn't even mention P2P or bittorrent, the service doesn't support it.

BitComet will work in no-listen-port mode, as you are seeing, but the transfer will be significantly slower than it otherwise could be.

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