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Eye on the Pirate Sky’s
Torrent Treasuremap for LandLuddites

Eye on the Pirate Sky, Technology Dispatches from Captain Tret Lo

 

Need help navigating the torrent clouds? Captain Tret Lo has a step by step guide for all your illegal downloading needs (this guide is in bad need of an update):

STEP #1, Finding your Torrent
For movies, TV shows, software and big albums you need look no further than The Pirate Bay. TPB is the world’s most popular Bittorrent Tracker, where you can find lists of thousands of torrents available for download. When searching for torrents be sure to notice two things: A) the file size, you don’t want this to be too big or too small. A full-length movie will range from 500MB (decent quality) to 10GB (near HD quality, but will take days to download). If the file is way outside these sizes it’s probably fake.
B) The number of Seeders (SE). An active torrent is composed of Seeders (SE), which are people who are sharing the full file, and Leechers (LE), people who are in the process of downloading the file. The fastest torrents will have a very high number of Seeders so when you search, try clicking the SE button to sort your results by Seeders, thus bringing the torrents with the most Seeders to the top. Comments on torrents should be taken with a grain of salt. Oftentimes you’ll see commenters complaining that a movie or file is fake but usually they just couldn’t figure out how to complete the download. The best indication of this is whether a lot of people are seeding it. Fake torrents don’t tend to last or be very popular, so again, look for torrents with lots of Seeders. Comments about Viruses should be taken seriously, especially if you’re using a PC.

Step #2 Downloading the File
When you’ve picked your torrent, click DOWNLOAD THIS TORRENT, and the torrent file will be downloaded to your desktop or documents or wherever downloads go. Note: this is not the movie yet! This tiny .torrent file will need to be dropped into your bittorrent client. I’ll recommend the bittorrent client uTorrent, because it’s available for PC’s and Macs. Once you’ve downloaded and installed uTorrent, you’ll simply need to open it up and drag the .torrent file you downloaded into the downloads window (or, when you’re downloading the file, choose to OPEN WITH uTorrent). Now in the Downloads window you’ll be able to see the speed of the download as well as ETA for how long the entire download will take. Once you’ve downloaded the full movie, it’s time to watch it. Some movies may not play in Quicktime or Windows Media Player because of their encoding so be sure you have VLC Media Player installed, it’s a Swiss army knife video player which can play any garbage you throw at it.

 

More of a visual learner? This twelve year old shut-in does an admirable job explaining how to download torrents on a Mac:

 

Have a PC? In this video a friendly but loveless man lays out the goods for downloading torrents in Windows: