Slow client download - Torrent?

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Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby matitaccia » Sat Jul 25, 2020 9:46 pm

Dear all,

I have downloaded the client a few times in the past weeks and I have noticed that the download is kind of slow. I was wondering if a torrent could be a viable solution to distribute the client to all the users withouth having to pay bandwidth or space on a server. Should this not be viable, I was wondering if it possible to contribute by hosting the file on some some other server, our current team page for example (keeping it updated is a critical point then, but as far I have understood the client gets updated not that often).

Thanks!

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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby JimboPalmer » Sat Jul 25, 2020 10:23 pm

It is ONLY advisable to download from the Follding@Home site.

From anywhere else, you have no idea what you are really downloading. Beware of any other download. (as I understand it, some Linux distributions have F@H included, I would still be nervous about any source other than F@H)

If you are doing multiple installs, I would download to a USB drive and include a sample config.xml on there so your name, team, and passkey are identical.
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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby bruce » Sat Jul 25, 2020 10:28 pm

I agree with JimboPalmser.

Our software license says you must download the client from our main website or from "approved" locations. I'm not sure how the approval process works, but we're not looking for other hosting sites. Downloading the client isn't a high frequency activity so I don't expect that torrent would make a significant improvement.
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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby Joe_H » Sat Jul 25, 2020 10:46 pm

The installer is also not that large, 30 MB for the last one I downloaded. They might benefit from creating a few mirror sites in Europe and Asia, but this is not the large download that creating torrents for would be useful.
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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby aetch » Sun Jul 26, 2020 7:35 am

Two more reasons:-
1). Part of the instructions tell/advise us to exempt the F@H client and working folders from our internet security so it doesn't interfere with F@H.
2). When a new client is released your internet security will flag it for a period after release, something you will have to override.
That is, to run F@H you're lowering your computer security. That's not really something you want to do when running any program that you're not 100% about as it could have been tampered with and lead to it playing havok with your system.
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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby bruce » Sun Jul 26, 2020 3:42 pm

What do you propose?
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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby aetch » Sun Jul 26, 2020 8:58 pm

I'm not making a proposal.

We are advised to weaken our computers defences, so F@H is not mistaken for virus activity and can run unimpeded.
We've got to put our trust into the F@H client that it isn't malicious and that the programs it downloads (cores) aren't malicious either.
Personally, that trust is garnered by the source I get it from and the ability to check the program has not been tampered with.
Torrents obfuscate the source, so they're really not something I want to lower my computers defence for.
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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby matitaccia » Mon Jul 27, 2020 10:34 pm

Thanks you all for the answers: I understand and somehow expected them.

I was enthusiastic about the idea of helping by sharing our bandwidth.

I will download the client once more and keep a copy locally so I don't have to wait next time... :-) ...

P.S.
Would it be considered illegal to host the client on the team page?
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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby JimboPalmer » Mon Jul 27, 2020 11:26 pm

matitaccia wrote:Would it be considered illegal to host the client on the team page?


Not at all.

It would be unwise for anyone to download from their team page, but not illegal.

My advice would be to link to the F@H page, so your team members know they are getting the unmodified file.
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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby bruce » Wed Jul 29, 2020 7:13 pm

Just how many minutes did it take you to download the client? You seem to have spent a lot more time trying to solve a really small problem.

In my book, downloading a new WU is a bigger problem, but you can adjust the time at which the client requests a new WU so that the inter-WU drop in production can be minimized. That happens a lot more frequently than a single client download.
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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby matitaccia » Wed Jul 29, 2020 10:56 pm

Just how many minutes did it take you to download the client? You seem to have spent a lot more time trying to solve a really small problem.


6 minutes. :-) Yes, you are right. Most probably I am too spoiled and used to dowload at higher speeds. Still the thought of the community contributing also on the bandwidth usage is higly motivating for me.

Yes, the WU issue is more critical. I did not mention it because I know it is already well known and if I remeber well there is already a quite deep exchange of ideas on how to implement torrent or a similar system which was then abandoned.

Thanks to all of you for the answers.

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Re: Slow client download - Torrent?

Postby MeeLee » Thu Jul 30, 2020 2:26 am

I think the effort isn't worth it.
The client can be hashed, and set on the FAH servers, so that the download client receives the exact file as the source, or else the hash will fail.
However, the overhead of running bittorrent servers, is probably higher than the file itself.
Bittorrent files make sense for big files, and if you're uploading the same files hundreds or thousands of times.
But not for small programs.

Sometimes bittorrent files remain in circulation for a very long time, even months after an update was posted.

I don't think torrent protocol is the right move for either the client/software, as for the WUs.
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