The following remark was made by Marie. L. van Uitert, MPAA attorney in the Jammie Thomas trial. She wrote in a brief:
It is often very difficult, and in some cases, impossible, to provide such direct proof when confronting modern forms of copyright infringement, whether over P2P networks or otherwise; understandably, copyright infringers typically do not keep records of infringement. Mandating that proof could thus have the pernicious effect of depriving copyright owners of a practical remedy against massive copyright infringement in many cases.
The rest of the brief goes on to list the reasons why the MPAA feels it should not have to meet the full burden of proof in its case (i.e. proving actual distribution). For them, the existence of a location where the copyright material could be copied is sufficient grounds for prosecution. When you take this off the internet, this is equivalent to suing some for 12 * $150,00 for loaning someone a CD they later copied.
You’ve heard that private file sharing networks exist, but you’ve probably never had a chance to explore one from the inside. These networks of software, music, television, and movie pirates often are run on the internal network infrastructure of private educational institutions. Because a university network has a fixed set of IP addresses, college pirates can run DC++ and write simple scripts to only allow users from the internal IP pool, or even the residential dormitory pool. This prevents unwanted interference (RIAA, MPAA, Police) with the network by simply making it invisible to the outside world. Also, most university networks are lightly-satured high-speed ethernet, giving student pirates the bandwidth to share large files.
While I attended Cornell University, students there ran a large DC++ hub to share files. There were anywhere between 1000 and 2000 users of the DC++ hub, which provided access to terabytes of shared files. Before I left the University to work, I transfered a complete set of users’ file lists to my home computer for later analysis. With 1215 XML file lists from DC++, I wrote a few perl scripts to calculate metrics on the 600mb data set.
Interestingly, the DC++ hub appears to still be around at its old redirect address thchub.no-ip.com:3307. Apparently a student r253141224 is hosting the service on his dorm computer 220.127.116.11.
Data From 20,000 Feet
From the file lists I have, there were 2,456,462 unique files, 5,424,446 total files, 19.07 unique terabytes, and 75.55 total terabytes. Here’s a histogram and data listing of the most popular file types:
mp3 1857432 jpg 828815 m4a 312173 png 264820 gif 224034 avi 203304 dll 133889 wma 116851 htm 82130 zip 79114
The file types follow a classic long-tail distribution, and let us query the data in more interesting ways. For example, for avi movie files, what were the most popular file names? Here’s the top 20:
crash.avi 90 pulp fiction.avi 76 garden state.avi 74 office space.avi 74 good will hunting.avi 72 wedding crashers.avi 67 sin city.avi 66 lost - 2x05 - ...and found.avi 65 super troopers.avi 63 zoolander.avi 60 robin hood - men in tights.avi 59 lost - 2x09 - what kate did.avi 58 eternal sunshine of the spotless mind.avi 57 lost - 2x04 - everybody hates hugo.avi 57 memento.avi 57 american beauty.avi 55 batman begins.avi 55 mean girls.avi 55 lost - 2x07 - the other 48 days.avi 54 old school.avi 54
We can take advantage of common patterns in the data to try and find other patterns, but I’ll save that for another day, and another post in what will undoubtably become a series.
If your torrents are downloading too slowly and you want to improve your download speed in Azureus, you’ve come to the right place. Azureus is a bittorrent client, namely, a program you can use to download files at high rates across the internet from a variety of peers. It’s a p2p (peer to peer) filesharing program, and may get you in trouble with legal authorities (RIAA, MPAA) if you use it illegally. However, it has plenty of non-infringing uses, as well.
Today I downloaded a torrent at 1.12 MB/s:
On a regular 10 Mb/s LAN that’s the best you’re going to be able to do, but only if your bit torrent program is configured properly. There are a few things you can do to improve performance in Azureus, and here they are:
1) Uncap the Windows XP SP2 Connections Limit
Service pack 2 limited the TCP/IP stack to 10 half-open connections–there rest are queued–to reduce virus spread rate. Unfortunately, this cripples a p2p program. Open those connections with this patch: EvID4226Patch223d-en.zip. Install at your own risk, but it works great for me with the limit increased from 10 to 100 or 200. You could go as high as 500 if you wanted, but that might be overkill.
2) Setup Port Forwarding
You need a path from your p2p program to the peers, and if you’re using a home firewall, make sure you forward the port that Azureus uses to your computer. This tutorial will help you–you can find the find the Azureus port in the first Options screen:
3) Setup Advanced Network Settings
Go to Options->Connection->Advanced Network Settings. You’ll see a screen like this:
You want a lot of simultaneous connections, so set the “max simultaneous outbound connection attempts” field to something just under what you set the Windows XP connection limit to in the hack in #1. I had 100 XP connections, so I set 64 in Azureus.
4) Upload Transfer
Go to Options->Transfer. You’ll see this screen:
You should set the “global max upload speed” 100-300KB/s, so that you can spend most of your connection bandwidth on downloading, and not uploading. However, the bit torrent protocol requires you to upload, so you should not set this less than 100 KB/s unless you’re on a very slow connection.