Archive for December, 2007

Warning for new users: while P2P file sharing technology is completely legal, many of the files traded through P2P are copyrighted. Unless you live in Canada where users are shielded from P2P lawsuits, then downloading P2P files may put you at risk for a civil lawsuit in any other country.

These lawsuits are usually class-action suits, filed against groups of users who blatantly copy and distribute copyrighted materials. Recently, the MPAA, the RIAA, and the governments of England and Australia took several thousand users to court, demanding that they pay thousands of dollars in copyright infringement penalties.

Your Internet Service Provider may, at their discretion, release their logs of your downloading activity to potential copyright plaintiffs. The more megabytes you download, the more you risk being sued by copyright protection groups. Please know this risk before you use any of the following Torrent search engines below.

1. Isohunt.com
September, 2007: Isohunt is barring American users from connecting to American torrent trackers. American users, however, can still use Isohunt to find torrents, and connect to third party trackers.

July, 2007: Isohunt has over 450,000 torrents in their database. Also noteworthy: any Isohunt torrent listed as “ISOhunt release” means that it is a file verified by the administrators…a nice feature to help you locate authentic torrents and not fake files. On a sad note: Isohunt is being sued by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) for copyright infringement. If you want to use this tremendous Canadian site, you better use it while you can.

2. Torrentportal.com

3. Torrentspy.com
September 2007 update: Torrentspy has declared that it will be forbidding American users from doing searches on its website, under pressure from the MPAA.

4. Snarf It! (born from previous Suprnova influences)

5. Demonoid (now shut down)
Nov 9, 2007 update: The CRIA has threated Demonoid’s ISP. Accordingly, Demonoid has shut down indefinitely. This is sad news for torrent downloaders everywhere, as Demonoid was one of the highest quality torrent databases of 2007.

Sep. 26, 2007 update: Canadian users can no longer access Demonoid.com. Details are forthcoming, but their Canadian ISP shut them down by court order. The Canadian Recording Industry Association is behind this court order.

6. Scrapetorrent.com is another torrent meta-search engine that is gaining popularity.

7. LegalTorrents.com (As the name implies, this is a database of public-domain content)

8. Torrentscan.com (a “meta-search” engine, which is a search engine that searches other search engines)

9. Torrentmatrix.com

10. Mininova.org has 190,000 torrents indexed as of April, 2007. Mininova is the successor to Suprnova, one of the original big torrent databases of the Web.

11. Torrentreactor.to (Torrentreactor has made a comeback from a hijacking and an uncooperative hosting service. They have moved to a different server setup and a Tonga country domain outside the USA. Read the details on their home page.)

12. Torrentz.com (one of the best torrents search engines)

13. Torrents.to

14. Torrentbox.com FYI: like Isohunt, Torrentbox is being sued by the MPAA as of February 28, 2006. The days for this fine search engine may be numbered.

15. BTjunkie

16. TorrentTyphoon.com (a unique bittorrent meta-search engine that searches several of the most popular sites. Unfortunately, it does not do a good job categorizing the torrent files themselves)

17. FileMP3.org

18. TorrentBytes.net

19. Yotoshi.com

20. The Pirate Bay (Pirate Bay, by readership size, is the most popular torrent search site today. Pirate Bay has an immense database of 600,000+ torrents, the largest database at this time.)

May 31, 2006: The Pirate Bay has been shut down by Swedish authorities. Details are available on the Pirate Bay home page.

June 2006: The Pirate Bay has restarted operations, now that the police have duplicated the PB hard drives for forensic purposes. Enjoy this database while it is still around, folks!

21. ByTorrents Meta Search

22. Thinktorrent.com

23. FileList.org

24. Meganova.org

25. Torrent-damage.net

26. FullDLS.com

27. TopTorrents (has been down intermittently the last few weeks for unknown reasons.)

28. Torrentlocomotive

29. BiteNova (formerly known as “Bi-Torrents”, BiteNova is a free Torrent site with a spartan look and fast searching format.)

30. bittorrent.com (the official Torrent website by Bram Cohen, the designer of the Python BitTorrent format.)

31. Fenopy (formerly Bitoogle.com) (the ‘original’ bittorrent search engine, which has now morphed into a metasearch engine. The results from your Bitoogle searches will point to various other torrent search sites. This site has been redirected recently.)

32. BTbot.com (this site has been intimidated into listing fewer and fewer current torrents. The administrator was likely spooked by the recent wave of lawsuits against Isohunt and Pirate Bay)

33. LokiTorrent.com (In a precedent-setting MPAA civil law suit, Loki has been shut down by court order as of Feb 10, 2005. To add insult to injury, the MPAA has left a trashy saber-rattling message at the lokitorrent home page in an attempt to intimidate other P2P users. P2P users everywhere are mourning the loss of this excellent service, and the MPAA is estranging even more Internet users with its heavy-handed campaign.)

34. Commonbits.com (This new beta search site is dedicated to media on progressive political content: audio, video, photos, reports, transcripts and other files. This is a place for activists to share their message, and for people to learn about other political choices.)

35. Torrents.co.uk (This British site has been slow to load lately)

Special mention:

ShareTV.org(ShareTV is dedicated to sharing television episodes and entire TV series. Find “24”, “Heroes”, and “Lost” episodes here. Special thanks to Chris R. for telling us about his web site.)

Torrent-Finder.com (This site has been submitted recently by three readers as their personal favorite torrent search engine. It “meta-searches” 159 torrent sites as of this writing. Special thanks to Dina, Suresh, and ChaOSthEory for this submission.)

Movie and Subtitles dot Net (http://www.moviesandsubtitles.net) is another metasearch engine that scours other torrent sites for you.

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How to speed up yours torrents

Posted: December 29, 2007 in From Me, Trivia
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If you are a Bit Torrent downloader, you know what slow download speeds are like…frustrating and annoying, to say the least. Instead of getting your music or movie within a couple of hours, your software predicts it will take 2 to 4 days.

Now, while many of the speed factors involved are out of your control, there is at least one thing you can do at your receiving end to improve this speed. It is called “Port Forwarding”, or “opening your specific TCP ports”. This is how it works.

1) That blue or green network cable coming out of your computer/modem/router is actually a busy highway comprised of 65,536 tiny electronic lanes (yes, over sixty-five thousand little lanes for your electrons). Each lane is called a “port”, and each port is designed to allow only specific types of information through.

Many ports are assigned in a semi-standardized way. Here are some example port assignments:

* HTML pages: port 80
* FTP file transferring: port 21
* World of Warcraft: port 3724
* POP3 email: port 110
* MSN Messenger: port 6901 and ports 6891-6900
* Everquest: port 1024
* Bit Torrents: port 6881

2) Bit torrents, by default, first look for port 6881 to enter/exit your computer. If port 6881 is closed for whatever reason, torrents then go to port 6882, then 6883, and so on, until it eventually tries port 6999 before giving up.

3) Every ISP, and every home router, can optionally block any of these ports with the intention of preventing hackers and controlling the network.

4) If you tell your own personal router and firewall at home to open (aka “forward”) port 6881 and port 6882, then your bit torrents will find their way into your computer that much faster. Sometimes up to 5x faster.

Yes, opening ports does increase the possibility of getting hacked by unwanted bad guys, but there are means to reduce that threat while still getting fast torrent download speeds.

Windows XP SP3???

Posted: December 28, 2007 in From Me, Trivia
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New information has leaked about Windows XP Service Pack 3, revealing that Microsoft has debuted the testing stage of the refresh. The third service pack for Windows XP has had everything but an easy ride. Announced initially for 2005, XP SP3 was delayed into 2006 and then further postponed for later that same year. Going head to head against the release of Windows Vista, XP SP3 was pushed into 2007 only to get yet another preliminary release date all the way into the first half of 2008. Up until this point there was little information available on XP SP3, outside of the availability date and a few
anodyne details about its contents.

Still, Microsoft did slip up earlier this year and announced that Windows XP SP3 would ship by the end of 2007. The Redmond company then denied the validity of the information blaming a spelling error for the promise of XP SP3 in 2007. Microsoft only confirmed the preliminary availability date set for the first half of 2008. However, the company is already testing the third service pack for Windows XP. According to AeroXP, Microsoft shipped Windows XP SP3 to testers concomitantly with the release of Windows Vista Service Pack 1.

Under the Windows Omerta strategy imposed by Steven Sinofsky, Senior Vice President, Windows and Windows Live Engineering Group, XP SP2, just as Vista SP1 Beta, was made available to a limited and select pool of testers. Windows XP SP3 is build 5.1.2600.3180 (xpsp.070718-2058) and weighs in at 350MB, including resolves for in excess of 900 problems already addressed through a variety of standalone hotfixes released after SP2. The images included at the bottom claim to be screenshots taken from Windows XP SP3, courtesy of WinBeta.

The launch date for the final versions of Windows Vista SP1 and Windows XP SP3 are only speculations at this point. Microsoft only confirmed that Vista SP1 beta will be delivered to the public by the end of 2007 and that XP SP3 will drop in 2008. But the obvious proximity of the testing builds for the service pack for XP and Vista could possibly point to a joint release, either by the end of this year, or in 2008.

source : http://news.softpedia.com

What I don’t get is why someone would want to install that closed beta*, when it would be smarter to wait a couple of months after it is really released, and is semi-bug free.

* = I think close beta is the appropriate term for this build.

Management Lessons

Posted: December 23, 2007 in Funny, Trivia, Uncategorized
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Lesson One

An eagle was sitting on a tree resting, doing nothing. A small rabbit saw the eagle and asked him, “Can I also sit like you and do nothing?” The eagle answered: “Sure, why not.” So, the rabbit sat on the ground below the eagle and rested.

All of a sudden a fox appeared, jumped on the rabbit and ate it.

Management lesson: To be sitting and doing nothing, you must be sitting very, vey high up.

Management Lessons

Posted: December 23, 2007 in Funny, Trivia
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Lesson Two

A turkey was chatting with a bull, “I would love to be able to get to the top of that tree,” sighed the turkey, “but I haven’t got the energy.”

“Well why don’t you nibble on some of my droppings?” replied the bull. “They’re packed with nutrients.” The turkey pecked at a lump of dung, and found it actually gave him enough strength to reach the lowest branch of the tree. The next day, after eating some more dung, he reached the second branch.

Finally, after a fourth night, the turkey was proudly perched at the top of the tree. He was promptly spotted by a farmer who shot him out of the tree.

Management Lesson: Bull shit might get you to the top, but it won’t keep you there.

Management Lessons

Posted: December 23, 2007 in Funny, Trivia
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Lesson Three

A little bird was flying south for the winter. It was cold; the bird froze and fell to the ground into a large field.

While he was lying there, a cow came by and dropped some dung on him. As the frozen bird lay there in the pile of cow dung, he began to realize how warm he was. The dung was actually thawing him out! He laid there all warm and happy, and soon began to sing for joy.

A passing cat heard the bird singing and came to investigate. Following the sound, the cat discovered the bird under the pile of cow dung, and promptly dug him out and ate him.

Management Lesson:
1) Not everyone who shits on you is your enemy;
2) Not everyone who gets you out of shit is your friend; and,
3) When you’re in deep shit, it’s best to keep your mouth shut.

Management Lessons

Posted: December 23, 2007 in Funny, Trivia
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Lesson Four

When the body was first made, all the parts wanted to be Boss. The brain said, “I should be Boss because I control the whole body’s responses and functions.” The feet said, ” We should be Boss as we carry the brain about and get him to where he wants to go.” The hands said, “We should be the Boss because we do all the work and earn all the money.” And so it went on and on with the heart, the lungs and the eyes until finally the asshole spoke up. All the parts laughed at the idea of the asshole being the Boss. So the asshole went on strike, blocked itself up and refused to work. Within a short time the eyes became crossed, the hands clenched, the feet twitched, the heart and lungs began to panic and the brain fevered.Eventually they all decided that the asshole should be the Boss.

Management Lesson: You don’t need brains to be a Boss – any asshole will do.