There are people who don’t agree with peer-to-peer and other file-sharing networks, and then there are people who really don’t agree with peer-to-peer and other file-sharing networks.
It would seem that someone in the latter category has taken umbrage with BitTorrent, and has taken it upon themselves to take BitTorrent out.
So it was that on Wednesday BitTorrent sustained ten solid hours of DDos (distributed denial-of-service attacks), aimed at the central BitTorrent directories. According to one of BitTorrent’s administrators, the unknown number of attacking systems completely maxed out BitTorrent’s 100-megabit connection.
The way that BitTorrent works is actually quite clever and elegant. A large file, say a movie, is broken up into little chunks in little files, and each of those little chunks
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is hosted on a different computer belonging to a different user. When someone wants to download that movie, the system grabs each of the little chunks from each individual computer, and then reassembles it all into the single large file at the receiving end.
Even though the entire concept of BitTorrent is to allow the sharing of large files to be distributed across a network of these otherwise unrelated computers, however, there still needs to be a master blueprint which tells the system which files are needed, and how to reassemble them, in order to recreate the original large file which the user wants to acquire. It was the directories containing these “blueprint” files which were the subject of Wednesday’s DDos attack.
Of course, as with the Lycos “Make Love Not Spam” screensaver-cum-spammer-DDoser program, DDosing anyone, even if you believe what they are doing is wrong..or even illegal, is still wrong. And illegal.
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