FAQ

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Revision as of 15:47, 19 September 2008 by Psyren (talk | contribs) (What are the different user classes?)
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Frequently Asked Questions
In here, you might just find the answers you're looking for!

Contents

Site content information

What makes BoxTorrents different?

There are many anime torrent sites but BoxTorrents is unique in the quality of our content. Our goal is to provide only torrents for completed anime or anime-related material and we pick only the best versions. Not everyone may submit new torrents; only Power Users, users who seem to have at least some experience with our site, and other appointed users. All submissions are thoroughly checked before they are added to our ever growing list of series; by ever growing, we really mean ever growing in the sense that even old torrents are still seeded. In short: 'quality over quantity' and 'ease of use'. Do keep in mind that BoxTorrents exists because of its users; old content is still available because of many dedicated seeders, so sharing is a must.

This is a public tracker, but we do prefer users to register before using the site. Before you do anything here at BoxTorrents, we suggest you read the rules! There are only a few rules to abide by and most are common sense.

If you see anything in here that is out of date or incorrect, or you'd like to add something, please contact psyren.


What is this BitTorrent all about anyway? How do I get the files?

Check out Brian's Bittorrent FAQ and Guide.


How do I watch the files I download?

Visit this page and have a look around. The CCCP (Combined Community Codec Pack) is the simplest codec pack available on the internet, and the simplest codec pack to set up. Out of the box, it is practically guaranteed to play anything that you throw at it (from our site, of course). If you have any problems, please look here for possible solutions. If you can't find one, you may either post in the forums asking for help or use the Help Form.


Where can I learn more about codecs/anime/manga/Japanese culture?

Google and Wikipedia are your friends.
For specific information on Japanese animations, there are 3 main resources: AniDB, AnimeNewsNetwork (ANN), and AnimeNFO. Each site offers unique information on any given title.
For specific information on manga, there's MangaUpdates and AnimeNewsNetwork (ANN).


User information

I registered an account but did not receive the confirmation e-mail!

Mail can sometimes take up to half a day to be sent out by our server. Please be patient. Note though that if you didn't receive the email the first time it will probably not succeed the second time either so you should really try another email address.


I've lost my user name or password! Can you send it to me?

Please use this form to have the login details mailed back to you.


Can you rename my account?

Users can rename their account on the tracker by using this form. Please note that the user is required to be a power user with report privileges.


Will my account still exist if I don't use it for a while?

Used accounts are pruned after 6 months. Unused accounts are pruned sooner (0 download, 0 upload).


My account is gone! Can you recover it?

Unfortunately, we can't do anything about pruned accounts. If you were able to create a new account under the same name and/or e-mail address, it is proof that your old account is permanently gone.


What is MY ratio?

Click on your profile link, then on your user name (at the top).

It's important to distinguish between your overall ratio and the individual ratio on each torrent you may be seeding or leeching. The overall ratio takes into account the total uploaded and downloaded from your account since you joined the site. The individual ratio takes into account those values for each torrent.

You may see two symbols instead of a number: "Inf.", which is just an abbreviation for Infinity, and means that you have downloaded 0 bytes while uploading a non-zero amount (ul/dl becomes infinity); "---", which should be read as "non-available", and shows up when you have both downloaded and uploaded 0 bytes (ul/dl = 0/0 which is an indeterminate amount).


Why is my IP displayed on my details page?

Only you and the site moderators can view your IP address and email. Other users do not see that information.


Help! I cannot login!? (a.k.a. Login of Death)

This problem sometimes occurs with MSIE. Close all Internet Explorer windows and open Internet Options in the control panel. Click the Delete Cookies button. You should now be able to login. Another solution is to visit http://www.boxtorrents.com/my.php


Why is my port number reported as "---"? (And why should I care?)

The tracker has determined that you are firewalled or NATed and cannot accept incoming connections.

This means that other peers in the swarm will be unable to connect to you, only you to them. Even worse, if two peers are both in this state they will not be able to connect at all. This has obviously a detrimental effect on the overall speed.

The way to solve the problem involves opening the ports used for incoming connections (the same range you defined in your client) on the firewall and/or configuring your NAT server to use a basic form of NAT for that range instead of NAPT (the actual process differs widely between different router models. Check your router documentation and/or support forum. You will also find lots of information on the subject at PortForward).


What are the different user classes?

Class Description
User Normal user, can choose to view hentai.
Power User Higher user, can view peer lists and report bad torrents or comments. Can make offers of torrents they wish to upload.
Uploader These people can upload directly to the torrent pool without requiring moderator approval. These people are appointed by staff if deemed a trustworthy member of the Box community.
Power Uploader Same as power user but with upload rights.
Moderator/Admins Appointed by Admins. Don't ask about becoming one.

How do I become a Power User?

Upload at least 25GB and have a ratio equal to or greater than 1.


How do I view peer lists for torrents?

Become a Power User and click on the Peer List tab under torrent descriptions. Non-Power Users can not view peer lists.


How do I add an avatar to my profile?

First, find an image that you like, and that complies with the rules. Then you will have to upload it to a hosting site, such as Photobucket, Upload-It! or ImageShack. All that is left to do is copy the URL (direct link) to the avatar field in your profile once you have uploaded it.

Please do not add a comment just to test your avatar. If everything is alright, you'll see it in your details page.


I am warned, what do I do?

What is a warning?

  • A warning means that your account currently has reduced rights; namely, you may not download. If you are warned it means you did something very wrong. The warning is there to protect other users, do keep in mind that BoxTorrents only works because many users put in some effort and bandwidth to keep our torrents healthy.

Why was I warned?

  • The warning may be set automatically if your ratio drops below a certain point or it may be set by a moderator if you broke a rule. In the second case, warnings will be longer depending on the severity of your offence that garnered the warning.

OK, so now what?

  • While your are warned you may not download; you are only allowed to seed. When you are warned an evaluation time will be scheduled (usually 1 week ahead), your account is then re-evaluated and if your ratio is high enough the warning will be lifted. If your ratio is not high enough a new evaluation time will be scheduled, and so on.

If you got warned because of a bad ratio (or if you you think you got warned because of a bad ratio ;) ) - the only way to get rid of the warning is by increasing your upload. The most obvious way is by seeding, but you may also use the bonus system (see: What are bonus torrents?). A third option is donating; the why and how is explained on the donation page.


Tracker Issues

Failure: access denied, leeching forbidden, you are only allowed to seed

Cause: Your ratio is too low.

Solution: Seed more and improve your ratio.


I am seeing torrents on my userpage that I never downloaded / Someone has hijacked my account.

Cause: Your passkey's secrecy has been compromised.

Solution: See the entry below.


People are using my torrent key / I accidentally posted my torrent key

Cause: Your torrent key identifies you as a user; never give it to anyone. Staff will never ask for you torrent key.

Solution: Go to your Profile and generate a new key, all your old torrents will become invalid immediately so you will have to re-download your torrents. Wait about 10-20 minutes to be sure the tracker has recorded your key change before resuming your torrenting.


I accidentally posted a link to download.php and I'm being charged for the downloads

Cause: When you are logged in the download.php links are for your user, if you post them people will get your torrent and your key. If you are logged out the links are anonymous, posting them elsewhere will not work as they are only valid for 24 hours. Generating a new key does not solve this problem.

Solution: Wait 24 hours for the download link to become invalid (download links are only valid for 24 hours) or remove the download link from where you posted it. If no more new people are given your key you can generate a new key to get rid of the 'leechers'.


I'm uploading or downloading some torrents but I don't see them on my userpage.

Cause: You downloaded a public torrent.

Solution: Log in and re-download the torrent.


"Failure: unregistered torrent pass"

Cause: The tracker can not find a user associated with the torrent pass you're sending it in your announce URL.

Solution: Re-download the torrent from the site.


"Failure: unregistered torrent"

Cause: The torrent you downloaded is not/no longer tracked by our tracker.

Solution: Check if the torrent has been swapped or replaced. We occasionally prune old obsolete torrents or material that has become blacklisted.


"Failure: access denied, torrents limit reached"

Cause: You are downloading too many torrents.

Solution: Users are allowed to download 3 torrents at a time. Power Users are allowed to download 10 torrents at a time. You are allowed to seed an unlimited number of torrents, regardless of your class. Check your userpage to see which torrents you are already downloading.


What are bonus torrents?

Bonus torrents are torrents with few seeders or few leechers, the idea of the bonus system is to keep older torrents alive. Bonus torrents are marked with an icon that looks like a yellow ball with a red "B" inside. When you seed a bonus torrent (and have 100%) you will earn 1 bonus point per hour per bonus torrent. Bonus points can be exchanged for upload credit on the bonus page (this means you can add an amount onto your 'uploaded' stat on your user page).


Statistics Tracking

How is my traffic tracked?

BoxTorrents uses a passkey system to identify each user. Your passkey can be found on your profile page. When you announce, your passkey is used to identify you and to (very accurately) track your upload and download traffic, regardless of any IP changes. The passkey is automatically added to the announce URL of every torrent you download whilst logged in. YOU MUST NEVER, EVER GIVE OUT YOUR PASSKEY TO ANY OTHER PERSON. Doing so will allow people to generate torrent traffic under your account. We will not be held responsible for any adverse effects this may have.


My stats are not updating. What can I do?

Check that the torrent pass in your client's tracker announce URL matches the one shown on your profile page. If it doesn't (or if it does, but you're still having problems), then:Remove the torrent entries from your torrent client. Re-download the .torrent files and open them in your client. Force a hash recheck and resume activity.If that doesn't help, go to your profile page and regenerate your torrent pass. Wait about 10-20 minutes to be sure the tracker has recorded your key change, then repeat the above step.Use only official non-beta clients.


Best practices

If a torrent you are currently leeching or seeding is not listed on your userpage, stop the torrent and resume it again. (also see: I'm uploading or downloading some torrents but I don't see them on my userpage)Make sure you exit your client properly, so that the tracker receives the required information.If the tracker is down, do not stop seeding. Your traffic may not be tracked during downtime but as soon as the tracker is working again then your traffic will be tracked again.


What BitTorrent clients can I use?

See BT_Clients for more information on what BitTorrent clients you can use.

There is currently no restriction on which clients you may use, but this will most likely change in the future. The tracker updates your stats correctly for most Bittorrent clients. However, we still recommend that you use the following clients:

For any client, we urge you to keep it up to date, most clients have had some problems with earlier versions.

Also, clients in alpha or beta version should be avoided.

We neither recommend nor will we provide support for: - BitComet - BitLord (modified BitComet with spyware added) - Shareaza


Why is a torrent I'm leeching/seeding listed several times in my profile?

If for some reason (e.g. PC crash or frozen client) your client exits improperly and you restart it, it will have a new peer_id, so it will show as a new torrent. The old one will never have had its finished information sent and will be listed until the peer information times out. Just ignore it, it will eventually go away.


I've finished or cancelled a torrent. Why is it still listed in my profile?

Some older clients do not report properly to the tracker when cancelling or finishing a torrent. In that case the tracker will keep waiting for the message - and thus listing the torrent as seeding or leeching - until the peer information timeout occurs. Just ignore it, it will eventually go away.


Why do I sometimes see torrents I'm not leeching in my profile?!

Under our new keying system, it is not possible for the tracker to confuse you with another peer. If you see torrents listed in your profile that you are DEFINITELY not leeching/seeding on, then we suggest you take the following actions: Change the e-mail and password on your account. If you did not give out your passkey then someone either has access to your email account or your Boxtorrents user account (or both).Go to your profile page and generate a new torrent pass. This will invalidate all your previous torrents ending whatever damage was done to your account. You will need to redownload your torrents.


Can I login from different computers?

Yes.


Can I seed from different computers?

Yes, but you may not seed the same torrent from two different computers as the tracker will not understand how you can be in two places at once :P. In the worst case, you will automatically banned.


Uploading

Why can't I upload torrents?

Power Users can make offers of torrents they wish to upload, which will be granted or rejected by staff. Staff members and certain approved users are permitted to upload directly without having to go through the approval procedure. Non-Power Users can not make offers.


How do I make an offer if I'm a Power User?

First, begin by reading this section of the FAQ to make sure that you fully understand what is required of you. Failure to do so will see your offer rejected (depending on the mood of the staff member who handles it). Once you have finished reading, click the 'Offer' button on the left side of the page. When creating your torrent, be sure to set the 'private' flag, or the system will automatically reject your torrent. Once you've created your torrent, fill in the description of your torrent. Once you submit your torrent for approval, it will join a queue of torrents awaiting judgement. You may leave your client 'seeding' your torrent at this point, but make sure you redownload the torrent from the website to have your passkey added to the announce URL (you may also add this manually if you wish, but it is not recommended). If granted, your torrent will be immediately added to Box's torrent pool (and if you are 'seeding', you will begin immediately). If rejected, your torrent will remain in 'limbo', sitting on the queue with 'rejected' status until either you or a mod removes it.


What does 'Semi-granted' mean?

Offers require the approval of two admins or moderators before they are added to the tracker. 'Semi-granted' is the state an offer acquires when one admin/mod has granted it, pending further approval.


What can/can't I put in my torrents?

Please refer to our Torrent Content Upload Guidelines and (ESPECIALLY) the Blacklist.


What should I put in the description?

Always include who released the files and as specfic as possible an indication of the quality (bit rate, codec, etc.). See the next paragraph for more details. Include a short description of what you're uploading, usually people include a short plot summary; be careful of spoilers though.


You may mark-up your text using BBcode or HTML; you can find many examples of nice templates in other peoples' descriptions. While this is not necessary, you may like to 'pretty up' your description. It's also very much appreciated if you include images and/or screenshots and links to sites like AniDB and AnimeNewsNetwork, although it is not necessary. Please note: when using HTML, be sure to include <html><body> ... </body></html> in the description, or the system will not know that you are using HTML and will treat your commands differently.


We look for succinct, accurate descriptions of the contents of your torrent. With the exclusion of OST torrents, all descriptions MUST have genres specified in the description. In addition:

  • For series/movies/OVAs, a plot summary and file details (sub group with video and audio codecs at the very least) will suffice.
  • For OSTs, track listings and file information (codec, bit rate (if applicable), and ripper at the very least) will do.
  • For manga, a plot summary and the scanlation group are the minimum requirements.


What is a good title for my torrent?

The title only needs to contain the original Japanese title and possibly the English title as well. You may add the name(s) of the involved group(s) in the title as well (example: Japanese Title | English Title [fansub]). Words like "OVA" or "Movie" are not always necessary because of the category system (however, if the title of the show includes "OVA" or "Movie", you should add it). In case you're uploading only a particular season of a longer series, it is useful to include the season and/or the episodes (for example: My Series - Season 1 [01-25]).


What are good keywords for my torrent?

You have to see the keywords as a second way to categorise torrents. Choose keywords that truthfully reflect the content of the files you're uploading and that allows it to be found in different ways than just searching for a title.

Good keywords are: genres*, 720p/1080p, fansub group, author, director, that kind of stuff. Someone might be interested in all of "Miyazaki's" or Studio 4C works, searching for Miyazaki resp. Studio 4C will match the keywords and you have what you're looking for.

Bad keywords are: anything that appears in the title of the torrent or is already expressed otherwise (OST, OVA, HD, Movie, etc.). Alternate titles, codecs, and your own personal comments do not belong in keywords. Either add them to your title, or to your description. Fansub groups are permissible as keywords, even if they are already included in your torrent title.

*- When listing genres, use AniDB's categories, not AnimeNFO or ANN, for consistency.


Guidelines:

  • First of all, ask yourself the question: "If I were looking for an anime 'like' this one, what keywords would I be looking for?" and "which keywords are not needed?"
  • Secondly, drop near duplicate keywords like 'Contemporary Fantasy' and 'Fantasy', as they are not both needed; just keep whichever applies more to your torrent.
  • Add only useful keywords. No one will search for keywords such as 'mp3' or 'DVD'.
  • Do not add duplicate keywords, for instance "Yuki Kajiura" and "Kajiura Yuki" or "Science-Fiction" and "Sci-Fi". Add only the one that currently exists in our keyword list.
  • This also holds for fansub names: add either (for instance) Abacus Subs or AbSubs, but not both; the latter is preferred because it is shorter.
  • Do not add alternative titles or alternative spellings. See title guidelines.
  • Check the list of keywords for existing keywords and/or common spellings. Keep in mind that the keyword listing is case-sensitive so match case, and matching other keywords is better than making a new one.
  • Check the Keywords article for descriptions for most of the common keywords.


Keyword syntax

We've just discussed the semantics of keywords, but what about the syntax? First of all, not all characters are allowed. Only alphanumeric characters, dashes (-) and spaces are allowed. Furthermore, a keyword is allowed to have two spaces, no more. If you're making a keyword of a composed word (for instance: Mamoru Oshii) keep it one keyword, don't add a comma in between. Genres like "Magical girl" and "Law and Order" should also be written without commas.


Adding keywords to your torrent

The field for entering keywords is above the description entry box. Typing in a word (or part of a word) will call up suggestions in a box. These suggestions are comprised of keywords that already exist on BoxTorrents. You should pick from the suggestions given to you to ensure consistency. Once you have clicked on the desired key word suggested, click 'Add' to associate it with your torrent. Repeat this process for as many keywords as you need (currently, there is a character limit on the keywords, so if you find that your last key word is getting cut off, remove it). Be sure to click 'Edit' below the description box when you're done, or none of your changes will be saved.

If you need to add a key word that isn't suggested, type it into the key word field and click on Add. This key word will be sent for moderation. If the key word is approved, it will be added to our official key word list and will appear on your torrent immediately. If rejected, it will be blacklisted, and will not show up again.


What are "extra files" and what should I add?

"Extra files" allow you to add (small) files to your torrent, files which you want to include but don't really belong in the torrent. You can think of .sfv/.md5 files for file verification (or hash tables in general) or .nfo files for credits and info. You are not allowed to add images. Linking to the files will not work, the link is dynamic and becomes invalid after 24 hours.

Any and all files released by the original source should be included as "extra files" (granted they do not violate the "extra files" rules, such as credits pages from manga. Leave those INSIDE your torrent). All video torrents (series/movies/ova) should have, but do not require, at least an .sfv or .md5 file with (official) hashes. You can get the CRCs from the fansubbers website or AniDB.net (the latter also lists md5 hashes amongst other hashes) if the CRC values are not in the file names.

DO NOT include these extra files in the contents of your torrent. Your offer will not be accepted if this is the case. If you get the message 'This torrent contains improper files, please swap the torrent file.' at the top of your offer page, that's your clue that there is something wrong with your file structure.


How do I attach extra files?

Simply edit your torrent (after it's been offered or uploaded), and there will be a box for you to enter the path of files you with to upload below the description box. Simply select it and click upload, and it will be attached right away.


What should I put in my torrents?

What we look for in torrents are:

  • A good description
  • File quality:
    Free of hash errors.
  • File consistency:
    If possible, all files released by a single group, all file names in the same format as they were originally released by the group involved (original file names). This applies to ALL torrents.
  • File structure:
    Do not pack files under different folders unnecessarily. An example would be packing episodes 1-12 in one folder, and 13-24 in another within the same torrent.
  • If uploading a manga, please follow these directions:
    • Overlook archiving if the manga is very short (a oneshot), or if the scanlator(s) have released the entire manga in a single file. In these cases, unzip the file, but do not make any further modifications to folder structure or file names.
    • If the scanlator(s) release a manga zipped by chapter (assuming there is more than one), retain the archived chapters and offer the files in that state.
  • No 'unnecessary' files: do not include codecs or programs. Acceptable files are external translation notes (for series/movies/OVAs) and credits pages (for manga)). If you're unsure about anything, please say so in the comments of your torrent offer.


What is this torrent swapping feature?

If, for any reason, something is wrong with your torrent (such as containing improper files or lacking a version 2 of an episode), you may request to swap the .torrent file. This will negate the need to delete the torrent and upload it again. You may apply to swap your own torrent files when they are either in the Offer stage or they are registered with the tracker.

To do so, edit your torrent. There will be a section for you to select a new .torrent file to replace the current one and a space for you to enter a reason why. Upon sending the request, you will need to wait for a moderator or admin to grant the swap request.


Can I upload your torrents to other trackers?

No. This generates extra traffic for the tracker without users visiting the site itself. It also usually results in the torrent being overrun by bad leechers, as users are not aware of the site rules.

Complaints from other sites' administrative staff about our torrents being posted on their sites will result in the banning of the users responsible.

(However, the files you download from us are yours to do as you please. You can always create another torrent, pointing to some other tracker, and upload it to the site of your choice.)


Downloading/Seeding

Why do I have to wait before I can download a new torrent?

When new torrents are uploaded, those with Power User (or higher) status are given 'first dibs'. Other users must wait for the timer to expire before they can download the .torrent file. The amount of time you have to wait is proportional to the size of the torrent (the larger the torrent, the longer you have to wait). This is an incentive for people to become Power Users, and also provides a higher seed base when other users are permitted to join the swarm.


What do I do if a torrent has no seeds?

Hop on the forums and post in the Reseed Request section. Be sure to read the rules before posting.


What's the difference between seeding and uploading?

'Uploading' is posting a new torrent to our tracker.

'Seeding' is uploading data on a torrent once you have completed the download.


Why did an active torrent suddenly disappear?

There may be three reasons for this:

  1. The torrent may have been out-of-sync with the site rules.
  2. The uploader or a moderator may have deleted it because it contained bad files. A replacement will probably be uploaded to take its place.
  3. The torrent was requested to be removed by a 3rd party.


I've finished downloading the files, so how do I seed back?

Once your download has completed, most clients will continue to run the torrent in seeding mode until the ratio is 1:1. If this is not the case, try some of these steps: 1) Simply press Start on your torrent again. Some clients might stop torrents that have finished downloading. 2) Check your client's settings regarding how much a torrent should be seeded to before stopping. Your settings may be preventing seeding. (e.g., uTorrent's 'Torrent Properties' dialogue box for each torrent has a ratio percentage figure which you can adjust)3) Force the torrent to start (e.g., in uTorrent, right click on the torrent entry and click 'Force Start'). This will force your client to ignore the rule mentioned above and seed until you stop the torrent.4) If all else fails, remove the torrent from your client, and see below for instructions on how to restore it to your client.

How do I resume a broken download or (re)seed something?

Open the .torrent file in your client. When your client asks you for a download location, choose the location of the existing file(s), force a recheck/rehash. Start the torrent, and it will resume/reseed (see the entry above for more information). Please note that most clients will require that file names match the ones specified in the .torrent file when it comes to multi-file torrents. Make sure that this is the case, or your client will not detect the files you have pointed it to. If, for whatever reason, you have decided to rename your files, then you have two choices: 1) (Re)Rename your files to match the torrent's.2) Find a torrent client that supports custom file names in multi-file torrents. At the time of this guide, the newest uTorrent beta and Azureus clients support individual custom file names in multi-file torrents. For more information, see the programs' web pages.


I'm seeding a torrent, but it doesn't seem to be doing anything!

First, check that you actually have someone to upload any data to. If you are on a torrent that has something like 10 seeders and 2 leechers, the chances of you uploading a great deal are slim to none. If there are no leechers... what are you expecting? Second, see this entry in the FAQ if you are not sure whether your ports are open.


Why do my downloads sometimes stall at 99%?

The more pieces you have, the harder it becomes to find peers who have pieces you are missing. That is why downloads sometimes slow down or even stall when there are just a few percent remaining. Just be patient and you will, sooner or later, get the remaining pieces.


What are these "a piece has failed a hash check" messages?

BitTorrent clients check the data they receive for integrity. When a piece fails this check it is automatically re-downloaded. Occasional hash fails are a common occurrence, and you shouldn't worry.

Some clients have an (advanced) option/preference to 'kick/ban clients that send you bad data' or similar. It should be turned on, since it makes sure that if a peer repeatedly sends you pieces that fail the hash check it will be ignored in the future.


The torrent is supposed to be 100MB. How come I downloaded 120MB?

See the hash fails topic. If your client receives bad data it will have to redownload it, therefore the total downloaded may be larger than the torrent size. Make sure the "kick/ban" option is turned on to minimize the extra downloads. Overhead may also account for some of this data.


What's this "IOError - [Errno13] Permission denied" error?

If you just want to fix it reboot your computer, it should solve the problem. Otherwise, read on.

IOError means Input-Output Error, and that is a file system error, not a tracker one. It shows up when your client is for some reason unable to open the partially downloaded torrent files. The most common cause is two instances of the client to be running simultaneously: the last time the client was closed it somehow didn't really close but kept running in the background, and is therefore still locking the files, making it impossible for the new instance to open them.

A more uncommon occurrence is a corrupted FAT. A crash may result in corruption that makes the partially downloaded files unreadable, and the error ensues. Running scandisk should solve the problem. (Note that this may happen only if you're running Windows 9x - which only supports FAT - or NT/2000/XP with FAT formatted hard drives. NTFS is much more robust and should never permit this problem.)


How can I improve my download speed?

The download speed mostly depends on the seeder-to-leecher ratio (SLR). Poor download speed is mainly a problem with new and very popular torrents where the SLR is low.

(side note: make sure you remember that you did not enjoy the low speed. Seed so that others will not endure the same.)

There are a couple of things that you can try on your end to improve your speed:


Do not immediately jump on new torrents

In particular, do not do it if you have a slow connection. The best speeds will be found around the half-life of a torrent, when the SLR will be at its highest. (The downside is that you will not be able to seed so much. It's up to you to balance the pros and cons of this.)


Make yourself connectable

See the Why is my port number reported as "---"? (And why should I care?)  section.


Limit your upload speed

The upload speed affects the download speed in essentially two ways:

  1. Bittorrent peers tend to favour those other peers that upload to them. This means that if A and B are leeching the same torrent and A is sending data to B at high speed then B will try to reciprocate. So due to this effect high upload speeds lead to high download speeds.
  2. Due to the way TCP works, when A is downloading something from B it has to keep telling B that it received the data sent to him. (These are called acknowledgements - ACKs -, a sort of "got it!" messages). If A fails to do this then B will stop sending data and wait. If A is uploading at full speed there may be no bandwidth left for the ACKs and they will be delayed. So due to this effect excessively high upload speeds lead to low download speeds.


The full effect is a combination of the two. The upload should be kept as high as possible while allowing the ACKs to get through without delay. A good thumb rule is keeping the upload at about 80% of the theoretical upload speed. You will have to fine tune yours to find out what works best for you. (Remember that keeping the upload high has the additional benefit of helping with your ratio.)


If you are running more than one instance of a client it is the overall upload speed that you must take into account. Some clients (e.g. Azureus) limit global upload speed, others (e.g. Shad0w's) do it on a per torrent basis. Know your client. The same applies if you are using your connection for anything else (e.g. browsing or ftp), always think of the overall upload speed.


Limit the number of simultaneous connections

Some operating systems (like Windows 9x) do not deal well with a large number of connections, and may even crash. Also some home routers (particularly when running NAT and/or firewall with stateful inspection services) tend to become slow or crash when having to deal with too many connections. There are no fixed values for this, you may try 60 or 100 and experiment with the value. Note that these numbers are additive, if you have two instances of a client running the numbers add up.


Limit the number of simultaneous uploads

Isn't this the same as above? No. Connections limit the number of peers your client is talking to and/or downloading from. Uploads limit the number of peers your client is actually uploading to. The ideal number is typically much lower than the number of connections, and highly dependent on your (physical) connection.


Just give it some time

As explained above peers favour other peers that upload to them. When you start leeching a new torrent you have nothing to offer to other peers and they will tend to ignore you. This makes the starts slow, in particular if, by change, the peers you are connected to include few or no seeders. The download speed should increase as soon as you have some pieces to share.


Why is my browsing so slow while leeching?

Your download speed is always finite. If you are a peer in a fast torrent it will almost certainly saturate your download bandwidth, and your browsing will suffer. A client like Azureus allows the user to limit uploads & downloads. You will have to use a third-party solution, such as NetLimiter.


Browsing was used just as an example. The same would apply to gaming, IMing, etc., ...


My ISP uses a transparent proxy. What should I do?

Caveat: This is a large and complex topic. It is not possible to cover all variations here.

Short reply: change to an ISP that does not force a proxy upon you. If you cannot or do not want to then read on.


What is a proxy?

Basically a middleman. When you are browsing a site through a proxy your requests are sent to the proxy and the proxy forwards them to the site instead of you connecting directly to the site. There are several classifications (the terminology is far from standard):

Type Description
Transparent A transparent proxy is one that needs no configuration on the clients. It works by automatically redirecting all port 80 traffic to the proxy. (Sometimes used as synonymous for non-anonymous.)
Explicit/Voluntary Clients must configure their browsers to use them.
Anonymous The proxy sends no client identification to the server. (HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR header is not sent; the server does not see your IP.)
Highly Anonymous The proxy sends no client or proxy identification to the server. (HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR, HTTP_VIA and HTTP_PROXY_CONNECTION headers are not sent; the server doesn't see your IP and doesn't even know you're using a proxy.)
Public (Self explanatory)


A transparent proxy may or may not be anonymous, and there are several levels of anonymity.


How do I find out if I'm behind a (transparent/anonymous) proxy?

Try ProxyJudge. It lists the HTTP headers that the server where it is running received from you. The relevant ones are HTTP_CLIENT_IP, HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR and REMOTE_ADDR.

Why is my port listed as "---" even though I'm not NAT/Firewalled?

The BoxTorrents tracker is quite smart at finding your real IP, but it does need the proxy to send the HTTP header HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR. If your ISP's proxy does not then what happens is that the tracker will interpret the proxy's IP address as the client's IP address. So when you login and the tracker tries to connect to your client to see if you are NAT/firewalled it will actually try to connect to the proxy on the port your client reports to be using for incoming connections. Naturally the proxy will not be listening on that port, the connection will fail and the tracker will think you are NAT/firewalled.


Why can't I connect? Is the site blocking me?

Your failure to connect may be due to several reasons.

Maybe my address is blacklisted?

The site blocks addresses of banned users. This works at Apache/PHP level, it's just a script that blocks logins from those addresses. It should not stop you from reaching the site. In particular it does not block lower level protocols, you should be able to ping/traceroute the server even if your address is blacklisted. If you cannot then the reason for the problem lies elsewhere.

Your ISP blocks the site's address

(In first place, it's unlikely your ISP is doing so. DNS name resolution and/or network problems are the usual culprits.) There's nothing we can do. You should contact your ISP (or get a new one). Note that you can still visit the site via a proxy, follow the instructions in the relevant section. In this case it doesn't matter if the proxy is anonymous or not, or which port it listens to.

Notice that you will always be listed as an "unconnectable" client because the tracker will be unable to check that you're capable of accepting incoming connections.


Is there an RSS feed available for BoxTorrents?

RSS Feeds are only available for Power Users. You will see the RSS Feed link appear when you become one.

An mIRC script is available that will check the RSS feed every x minutes, if there are any new torrents uploaded then it lists the new torrents, you can also manually check for new torrents. Information about the script, Download Link.


What if I can't find the answer to my problem here?

So, after reading all that, you still can't find a solution? Read on. Post in the forums, by all means. You'll find it's a friendly and helpful place, provided you follow a few basic guidelines:

  • Make sure your problem is not answered in this FAQ. There's no point in posting just to be sent back here amidst a torrent of angry remarks.
  • Before posting, read the stickied topics (the ones at the top). Many times, new information that still hasn't been incorporated in the FAQ can be found there.
  • Help us in helping you. Do not just say "it doesn't work!". Provide details so that we don't have to guess or waste time asking. What client do you use? What's your OS? What's your network setup? What's the exact error message you get, if any? What are the torrents you are having problems with? The more you tell the easiest it will be for us, and the more probable your post will get a reply that's useful, as opposed to 'more info'.
  • PLEASE make an effort to make your posts readable. There is nothing worse than trying to decipher a post that looks like it was written by someone mashing their face on the keyboard. Perfect spelling isn't necessary, but basic grammar and punctuation definitely helps.
  • ... and needless to say: be polite. Demanding help rarely works. Asking nicely for it usually does the trick.
  • DO NOT send a private message to a staff member. If you don't wish to post in the forums, use the help form instead.
  • To prove that you have read this FAQ before seeking help, please quote the words 'Gelatin Fish Sandwich' in your post. We are quite serious. Failure to do so will result in your thread being locked immediately or your help request being ignored. This phrase is subject to change.

Last updated: 8:35 am on September 6th 2008