TORRENTING WITH A MASK | TOR / I2P

Tor:

Tor has several torrent sites. The Pirate Bay, for example, has a .onion backup at  uj3wazyk5u4hnvtk.onion. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that Tor wasn’t built for torrenting. If your goal is to remain anonymous, this simply isn’t possible if you torrent through Tor. Downloading the .torrent file over Tor is fine. Routing the subsequent 36GB download of Inception.3D.60FPS.1080p.5.1.DTS.BDRip.mp4 through Tor is not fine. Unlike other networks, Tor’s infrastructure is unable to support high bandwidth applications like that. There’s about 700 exit relays serving 3 million people at any given time. If too many people torrent, the network will saturate to a standstill. Then you have the problem that your BitTorrent client needs to publicly announce your IP to the tracker in order for peers to find you. Your client may “anonymously” send your real IP to the tracker, in which case you’ve literally seen no benefit in using Tor. Furthermore, torrenting over the Tor network is painfully slow, but still faster than I2P.

Tor can be advantageous if one is using it to download .torrent files. The user can remain anonymous while downloading the file. The problem only arises when users configure their BitTorrent client to go through Tor instead of the Clearnet when connecting to peers.

I2P: 

I2P is another large anonymizing network that is like Tor, but also has some distinct differences. I2P has the Postman Tracker and I2PSnark. The tracker is essentially the Pirate Bay, and I2PSnark is essentially uTorrent. Unlike Tor, I2P has no issues with users torrenting. In fact, torrenting improves overall anonymity by providing more cover traffic. Moreover, torrenting on I2P is anonymous and secure, way better than any VPN because it is engineered for privacy.

There are many high-quality torrents available on the tracker. Unlike what the general public thinks, there isn’t that much child pornography on I2P. Instead, there are plenty of books, including huge databases on programming and sci-fi. Pirate Bay also has a backup on I2P. Porn, banned books, movies, music, and backups of leaked government documents are also bountiful on I2P. Don’t get the wrong idea: I2P users value freedom of speech, copy-left, transparency, and the power of technology within society. Unlike the average Pirate Bay user, this community truly cares about keeping the internet anonymous and uncensored.

The main disadvantage of I2P is speed. I2P has an average download speed of 30KBps, which is quite slow compared to the common 1-2MB/s that torrenting sites on the Clear Net offer. But, there is one thing to consider: the longer you spend waiting to download a torrent over I2P, the less time you’ll spend getting sued. It’s a trade-off, and you’ll have to choose based on what you value more: speed or security. Usually, torrents started on I2P will finish overnight and you’ll be assured of your anonymity.

Here are some other I2P trackers:

PaTracker 1.7 aka Postman’s I2P tracker, or simply Postman. I2P’s main torrent tracker. Has been up for years. Very active, very reliable. Lots of good stuff http://tracker2.postman.i2p
DifTracker – A large body of French content
http://diftracker.i2p

exotrack.i2p – Deserted but functional.
http://exotrack.i2p

Myttk – A Russian torrent site.
http://myttk.i2p

Conclusion:

If your primary goal is anonymity, then I2P is the clear winner for you. Although you may have to suffer through slow download speeds, I2P offers more anonymity than Tor because of its decentralized nature. I2P also has its own BitTorrent client: I2pSnark. However, it does have fewer users than Tor and this could be a problem when connecting to peers for file sharing. This is also means that is has slower speeds than Tor.

If your primary goal is simply downloading the .torrent file, then Tor is the best option. Tor allows users to download .torrent files fast but isn’t suitable for connecting to peers due to its low bandwidth capability.

In any case, it is extremely hard for public torrent sites on Tor or I2p to sustain themselves due to the decreased amounts of ad revenue. Furthermore, torrents on the Dark Net will have less peers due to the complicated methods needed to access them. No matter the option you choose: Happy Torrenting!

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