What you can do when uTorrent loses all torrent information

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I started some torrent downloads late last night and knew that they would not complete before bed time. That's usually not a problem as uTorrent, my torrent client of choice, restores the session on the next start of the program.

When I started the client today it showed nothing however. No torrents were listed, and the downloading, seeding and completed lists were all empty as well.

I checked under Options > Preferences > Directories to make sure that the client was using the right directories and it was.

It happened in the past, usually after updates, that uTorrent reverted to default directories both for the program itself and the download locations. This time however, that was not the case.

This was quite puzzling and somewhat annoying, as I tend to delete downloaded torrent information files when I add them to the client (if they are not magnet files) so that I was not able to simply reload them into the program.

Next stop was the temporary storage folder that uTorrent uses to place downloads and torrents that it uses in. The folders and files of the torrents that were started yesterday were in that folder, but the torrent files were not. Usually, torrent files are saved here too.

What to do

I had no desire to go back to the sites I downloaded the torrent files from to do that again. I spend about half an hour yesterday doing that and the prospect of having to do so again was not very appealing.

If I would not have deleted them yesterday, all I would have to do is load the torrent files again. The uTorrent client checks them for completion automatically and starts to download the remaining data after those checks.

So, check the temporary folder that uTorrent uses first, then the system's download folder. If the torrents are not there anymore, continue below.

Since I did not have those files, I only had one other choice: uTorrent saves session information to a file called resume.dat. And just like Firefox does, it keeps a copy of an older version of that file so that you can restore an older session.

utorrent resume session

With uTorrent still open, fire up your system's file manager and go to the program directory of the application. In modern versions of Windows, uTorrent gets installed to %AppData%\uTorrent by default (the appdata entry is a placeholder which leads to here: C:\Users\name\AppData\Roaming\uTorrent). Just paste that into Windows Explorer or another file manager and the program directory should open up.

If you have installed uTorrent to a custom directory instead youneed to open that folder obviously.

Here you find the resume.dat file which is the file of the current session and the resume.dat.old file which contains previous session information.

Do the following now:

  1. Copy resume.dat.old and place it in another directory for safekeeping.
  2. Shut down uTorrent and make sure it is not running anymore (check via Ctrl-Shift-Esc which opens the Windows Task Manager).
  3. Delete resume.dat from the uTorrent folder.
  4. Rename resume.dat.old that is also in that folder and remove the .old part from it.
  5. Restart the uTorrent client.

If things work out, uTorrent should pick up the last session and display the torrents again that you have added to download previously.

Please note that this won't work if the old session file has already been replaced with a newer copy.

Summary
Article Name
How to restore a uTorrent session
Author
Description
You can restore the previous uTorrent downloading session in case torrent files do not show up on start or are missing for other reasons.
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Responses to What you can do when uTorrent loses all torrent information

  1. Elben April 17, 2014 at 4:45 pm #

    A very good tip.

    • bob gawley April 17, 2014 at 11:21 pm #

      I use version 1.82 this is stable and does not cause any problems.

  2. Blue April 17, 2014 at 10:01 pm #

    Luckily Bitcomet never had have this problem. While downloading if it reports there is a newer version available it asks me to download it via FTP or as a torrent. Once downloaded I can run it while torrents/magnets are currently running and during installation the program will stop, refresh and reload in the new version all the while continuing where it left off as well as any other info (login) from the previous version. I may also disable this behavior manually should I choose to.

  3. Zinc April 18, 2014 at 5:25 am #

    Does your Mom make you shutdown your computer when you go to bed?
    /s

    Seriously,..though...ĀµTorrent has an "Auto Shutdown" feature that will close the program when your torrents are complete...

  4. Mountainking April 18, 2014 at 7:31 am #

    What Zinc said...

    I am curious of what file you were downloading!

  5. SeeNLiNx July 28, 2014 at 3:46 pm #

    Thanks for the good article mate, unfortunately my dat.old file was also 1k...dir was full of dat.old.bad files though.
    With each successive update of uTorrent (unfortunately I'm on 3.4.2 (build 32239) that deploys it gets worse...lost
    all my torrrents, settings etc every couple of days...what a load of rubbish it's become...full of ads, crashes, banners
    and now constant data loss...as Bob said going back to the old 1.x versions that rocked...

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