Test if your ISP is throttling Bittorrent Traffic

Martin Brinkmann
May 8, 2008
Updated • Dec 2, 2012
File Sharing, Internet

Do you suspect your ISP to be throttling Bittorrent traffic ? That the ISP is shaping traffic which reduces your upload and download bandwidth when using the Bittorrent network ? Want proof ? Without installing plugins or days of gathering data ? Then Glasnost is the solution. Glasnost was developed by the Max Planck Institute for Software Systems to provide a simple test that would tell a user in a matter of minutes if his ISP is blocking, throttling, shaping or limiting Bittorrent traffic.

The web application is simulating a Bittorrent transfer between the user's computer and the web server the application is running from to determine if the ISP is tampering with the Bittorrent traffic. The test can detect if the ISP is throttling all Bittorrent traffic, throttling all traffic at well known Bittorrent ports or throttling Bittorrent traffic at well known Bittorrent ports.

The user has the choice to perform a full test that takes roughly seven minutes or a fast test that lasts four minutes. The servers seem to be overrun currently by worldwide users and it might happen that you will receive a message that the servers are currently busy.

If you take a look at the results map you will notice a high concentration of ISPs that are throttling Bittorrent traffic in the United States and Singapore.

All blocked transfers were observed in the upstream direction (i.e., when the client host attempted to upload data to one of our Glasnost servers). No host observed blocking for downstream BitTorrent transfers.

We found widespread blocking of BitTorrent transfers only in the U.S. and Singapore. Interestingly, even within these countries, blocking was observed by hosts belonging to a handful of large ISPs.

The Danes and Brits seem to have tested the web application intensively because their countries are almost not visible anymore. What about your ISP, is it throttling Bittorrent traffic ?


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  1. Decent60 said on November 11, 2013 at 7:33 pm

    K-Lite pack MEGA. All you need to know lol If it won’t play with that, then it needed a whole new program to use anyways.

  2. Anonymous said on November 11, 2013 at 10:48 pm

    VLC Player has played just about every file for me. If VLC can’t play it, then the file was probably malicious anyways

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 11, 2013 at 10:53 pm

      As I said, VLC should have you covered. But if you use Media Player or something similar, you may like this.

  3. Ron said on November 11, 2013 at 11:39 pm

    Media Player Classic – Home Cinema (MPC-HC) or Media Player Classic – BE (MPC-BE) should be able to play (almost) anything also. MPC-BE is my player of choice. (It also has a small footprint on your hard drive, which is something I always take into consideration when choosing between different programs.)

  4. brian Tran said on November 12, 2013 at 3:28 pm

    love utorrent..

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