Wednesday, June 01, 2005

P2P Clients

Recently, only about 50 days back I got a broadband connection. Before broadband connection it was very tough to browse through many of the graphic intensive sites and it was difficult or close to impossible to use a p2p tool on the computer. For the benefit of the people who do not know what a p2p tool is here is a quick review. A p2p tool or a client as it is popularly called as a utility which helps in sharing and delivery of user specified files among groups of people who are logged on to a file sharing network. Napster was the first mainstream P2P software that enabled large scale file sharing. The major file sharing networks existing on the web are Gnutella and others. Actually p2p is one of those things on the internet which supports the open source but off late has become a problem since on the name of sharing people are sharing just anything like movies, softwares, mp3 songs. An instance of this is that when Star Wars 3 was released it was immedietely available on the Gnutella network and any one having a p2p client was able to access it.
I never had the luxury of using a P2P client on my dead speed dial up connection. Even when I used to download a Kazaa set up it never used to get to completion.
But when broadband arrived at my home every thing became very fast and simple to access. In this article I have reviewed three p2p tools available widely on the internet.
The first KAZAA is perhaps the oldest and the most widely used tool. Now what comes with Kazaa into your computer upon installation is a host of adwares like GAIN, 180 degree solutions etc. Very soon one can discover that Norton Antivirus has terrible problems with it. It also takes lot of time to load and has a bundled antivirus solution with it called as Bull Dog which checks for updates whenever we start Kazaa. The search results are the same in all the three perhaps but the speed as I have seen is better in LIMEWIRE which I will be explaining later.
The second one which is SHAREAZA is a true brother of KAZAA only in terms of name since both of them share the same suffixes. Shareaza is a open source p2p utility and unlike Kazaa is totally ad free banner free and any of the other addons which one may come across with the kazaa GNU. Unlike Kazaa and Limewire Shareaza is a freeware in the real sense and does not trouble the user everytime for a upgrade. Kazaa and Limewire have an upgrade version from the free version which has some enhanced features and no ads. But all in all Shareaza is above all of them and stands out as the best utility for p2p sharing.
The third software which is the focus here is the LIMEWIRE. Now limewire is also one of very popular p2p tool available on the web and the last issue of CHIP actually reviewed the software. The problem with LIMEWIRE is that is a Java based software and written in Java so as all java software it is very slow in loading the first GNU. It takes a lot of time for the GNU of Limewire to load and then it works very well. It is also troublesome to alt-tab through various windows when LIMEWIRE is running. But the way LIMEWIRE organizes the files is really good. It organizes the files by the connection and then by the type like rar or zip or exe etc. Moreover the speed across the LIMEWIRE is also much better than shareaza or Kazaa.
If you are looking for simple things and not much bothered about speed I would recommend Shareaza. If you are looking for something really good and need more customization then go for Limewire. If you are really a Kazaa fan then only go for it otherwise just forget it.

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