The most popular BitTorrent client in the world has just gotten a big update which means it's upgrade time for a lot of people. It's well worth the upgrade too, as uTorrent 2.0 is a big step forward. The biggest update is support for µTP, which should help with network congestion and could result in improved download speeds. There is also a new setup dialog designed to make it easier to configure uTorrent to suite your network connection.
For BitTorrent on the whole, the biggest new feature, one that could potentially have big effects on how the protocol is used, is the µTP protocol
. µTP is a new communications method which enables the client to automatically throttle its bandwidth consumption depending on the network conditions. The idea is that uTorrent will detect if there is a connection slowdown and will decrease download and upload speeds to match. This will technically slow down downloads, but it will also put significantly less strain on the ISPs.
The people behind uTorrent believe this will make ISPs less likely to deploy traffic shaping methods which are generally aimed at peer-to-peer traffic, BitTorrent in particular. Currently, BitTorrent clients are geared to eat up as much bandwidth as possible. This, coupled with the number of people using them, makes them quite unpopular with Internet providers. As new protocol gets wider adoption it should lead to less clogging meaning faster, or at least smoother, Internet for everyone. For the users, it means they'll be able to do some browsing, play online games or do anything else online without worrying about the impact their BitTorrent downloads is having.
For now though, the users are going to be much more interested in the updates that bring tangible benefits from the get go. The new setup dialog is probably the most noticeable change. It comes with an integrated connection speed test
and suggests the optimal settings based on its results. uTorrent 2.0 also gets more thorough traffic cap settings, a very welcome feature for those whose ISPs have monthly traffic limits.
final is available for download here