What is Torrenting? How it Works? Is it illegal ? {Complete Guide }

what is torrenting

Getting to know what a torrenting is a bit difficult for the beginners. You need to have a fair knowledge of terminology and rules to remember about torrenting in technical terms.

Otherwise, it would be a bit confusing for the newcomers. If you're wondering to know what torrenting is and how does it work, then you need to continue reading this article.

We will provide the complete guide on how to use torrents safely by providing the better explanation and what goes on the background when a file is downloading.


What torrenting means?

Torrenting is the method of sharing and downloading the files online easily.

It is nothing but a file which consists of the metadata which you are about to download.

Most of the people get confused between torrent and BitTorrent as the names look similar. But they are different and these both can be used interchangeably.

BitTorrent is an FTP(File Transfer Protocol) that breaks larger shared files into smaller pieces. Without any hassle, anyone can share data, movies, music, games, photos, and much more using torrenting.

The main benefit of this protocol(torrenting) is that you can download the files from the source as well as from the users of the torrent.

For example, if you are downloading a movie through flow, then it means you are not only downloading the complete file from the source but also from the other torrent users as well.

The terminology used in torrenting:

Now you need to know the language used in torrenting to get the better understanding. They are mentioned below in detail.

Torrent Peers:

When you have torrent files, people on the network either sharing or downloading files is considered a peer. Your data is considered as a peer as long as you are sharing the files on the web.


You are considered as a seeder if you are sharing the files on the torrent network. Being a seeder, many torrent networks and communities place a significant amount of sharing.


You are considered as a leecher when you are downloading the files from other on the torrent network. If you download the files more than sharing, then you will become a leech. Being a leech can get you kicked out of the torrent site.

Torrent client:

Torrents clients are none other than the people who are downloading the torrent files. One can download torrent files only by using a torrent client.

Magnet links and torrent files:

If you want to download a file that is available on a torrent site, then you will be using either magnet link or torrent file to begin the process.

-A torrent file helps the torrent client to find the pieces of the files located on other people's system. It aids to handle the torrent compilation and combines that file back into one complete package.

-Magnet link helps to find the hosts sharing the data. It allows to start the download and compile the file without using a torrent file.


A server known as trackers handle the download requests of a torrent client. The tracker ensures that the files you are trying to download from other users on the network are successfully downloaded on your computer.

I think you get a brief idea of what torrenting and its terminology is! Let me explain you more about how it works?

Here is the quick guide for the people who want to use torrenting right away. We suggest you to continue reading to know more about torrenting in detail.

1.Download a Torrent Client:

Many torrent clients are available online. Choose the right one and select the path to save the downloaded files. Download and install the chosen torrent client on the desired platform.

After successful installation, you can open the torrent client. However, you can't find anything happening as you haven't uploaded or downloaded any files.

If you don't like to download the file, then click on the magnet option which is present below the download. By choosing this option, your torrent file will be automatically promoted to select a torrent client of your choice.

Find a torrent to download:

If you want to search for a file, then look for any of the torrents websites available online. Clicking any of the versions on the site will download a .torrent file on your system.

torrent download

uTorrent is one of the most popular and widely used by the people because of its free edition. It is recommended to all the members as it is easy and straightforward to use.

 It is the best software designed to download a large number of files. The excellent feature of this software is that you don't need to wait to shut down the system until the download gets completed. It resumes the download automatically and gets connected when the internet connection is back.

How to search for a specific file and download it on your system?

To search for a particular movie, song, games, software or anything use torrentz.com and type your desired search keyword. Then the tracker will provide the list of files related to your search. If the data is a popular one, then you can find many files to choose.

Many public trackers design advertisements that look like a legitimate search result and you can find them at the top of your search result.  

Determine and choose the legitimate file which you want to download. Here you need to consider two main factors before starting the download.

Quality: Choose the larger files as they have higher quality compared to smaller ones. The process of encoding will result in varying quality between the files.

Look for seeders: Check the number of seeders in your search result. If your file has more seeders, then you can download the file quickly.

Ensure that your media player supports the file. Otherwise, download and connect a specialized video player like VLC player or other media access player.

Once you have found the file that you want, click on the download link.

After few minutes, your torrent file will begin connecting to the seeders. You can see that your download speed is increasing in the status bar. You also can download multiple files at the same time.

What goes in the background when a torrent file is downloading?

The files on the torrent network are broken into smaller parts with each peer network sharing different parts of the file. This process is often known as the swarm.

You can find different types of the torrent client on the market. The famous torrent clients are utorrent, qBittorent, Deluge, Transmission, BitTorrent.

You can use different search engines to find the .torrent file extensions around the internet. The .torrrent text file works as a unique pointer to locate the specific file and the swarm of people sharing that particular file.

Choose the desired .torrent file you want to download on your drive.

Open the .torrent file on your torrent software. By double-clicking on the downloaded file will lead you to the torrent software.

The torrent software on your system will contact the tracker server to search for the other users who have the same exact .torrent file as you.

Open the .torrent file on your torrent software. By double-clicking on the downloaded file will lead you to the torrent software.

The torrent software on your system will contact the tracker server to search for the other users who have the same exact .torrent file as you.

Protect your IP address:

When you are torrenting, the main cause you get caught is exposing your true identity(IP address) while seeding.

If you don't want to face any difficulties with torrent, then you must ensure that your VPN(Virtual Private Network) service is on. VPN plays a significant role for torrenting.

It will help you to encrypt your entire internet connection. Performing internet connections with VPN will make it easy for you to bypass all the possible censorship of torrent trackers in your country.

Every single click you make while torrenting is being watched by many government servers, hackers, large media companies and every single user of a torrent.

So to become an anonymous user, you need to use best VPN to protect your IP address from getting hacked. The main benefit of VPN is that you can conceal your IP address from other seeders and hides your downloading activity from them.

Torrenting Visualized:

For more explicit understanding let us consider the following example to explain what torrenting might look.

If you are a beginner, then you need to know the four significant roles on this graph:


Torrent Site Web Server


The Beatles

Alice is none other than the representation of you. Alice is an individual looking to download the files using the torrent network.

Alice is acting as a seeder and a leecher who is attempting to access the torrent network to find the magnet link or torrent file she/he likes to download.

With the help of the torrent client, you can copy the link or open the torrent download file. Now the torrent client will get connected to the tracker server and begins to locate the file Alice wants to download.

The tracker determines John, Paul, George, and Ringo on the swarm and finds that each of them has the file on their systems what Alice is trying to download.

After finding the pieces of the files, the tracker starts working with Alice's torrent client to download the bits of the file from all the people who have it.

As the downloading process started, she will also have few files that she can share it with other people on the network.

The files that Alice contains including the partial files are available to the other users.

Even if she has the small pieces of the files then other people on the network like John, Paul, George, and Ringo can start leeching those files. If Alice is the only one who has the files that others are looking for, then she can start seeding it into the network.


In certain countries torrent is considered as legal and in some other countries it is entirely illegal.

So, using VPN will help not to face any difficulties because VPN hides your real identity while you are seeding or leeching the files.

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