IP Blocking for uTorrent in Windows XP & Vista
For years now, Anti-P2P organizations have been polluting BitTorrent with fake peers and bogus torrent files, which send out fake or corrupt data in order to slow down file transfers and/or log the IP addresses of users who ’share’ the torrent. This is typically rampant on a communal BitTorrent level through publicly-accessible torrents from popular sites such as ThePirateBay, mininova, Isohunt, et al. Consequences range from those laughable (but sometimes scary) DMCA notices sent from your ISP; cease-and-desist letters; and even worse, pre-litigation letters from any company under the RIAA / MPAA / IFPI “umbrella”.
To significantly reduce your chances of connecting with malicious peers, the integration of IP Blocking is crucial to P2P safety. This can be approached through third-party software, including PeerGuardian2 or Blocklist Manager - but it can also be handled client-side through IP blocklists. µTorrent supports IP blocking at the BitTorrent protocol level - and it’s a great solution for Vista users who don’t yet have the option of using an external program such as PeerGuardian2.
This article has been done to death, but I’ve updated it with easy-to-follow screenshots and a working link to the updated file.
1. Download the nipfilter.dat.gz file, and save. This nipfilter.dat file comes from the B.I.S.S. website - leaders in the maintenance and development of the blocklists. NOTE: You’ll need to open it with WinRAR or 7-ZIP (or other archive program). Extract nipfilter.dat and save to the location of your choice.
2. Rename the file from “nipfilter.dat” to “ipfilter.dat”. (remove the “n”)
3. Copy the file to your “C:\Documents and Settings\<your computer name>\Application Data\uTorrent” directory. To locate this, open a folder and in the Address Bar, type in: %AppData%\uTorrent.
This can also be done through the “Run” command. Click the Start Button, and select “Run” - enter %AppData%\uTorrent.
4. After the file has been copied there, either restart µtorrent or hit CTRL+P in the µtorrent window, and select OK. To verify that the IP blocklist is working, click on the LOGGER tab and look for “Loaded IP Filter.dat”, like this:
NOTE: These steps must be repeated when updating the ipfilter.dat file, which is recommended to do at least once a month. Here is a great blog-post on how to automate the updating process.
This is a great solution for Windows Vista users who want to incorporate PeerGuardian-style IP blocking and use BitTorrent exclusively. The procedure is exactly the same as above, except in Step 3, you’ll need to place the ipfilter.dat file in this directory:
Another alternative is to use a pre-release ‘beta’ version of PeerGuardian2 for Vista.
By default, IP filter is already turned ‘ON’ in the latest versions of µtorrent. If you’re using an older version, verify that it is set to ‘ON’ in the settings. Go to OPTIONS > PREFERENCES… and scroll down to where it says “ip filter:enable“. Choose “True” and click ‘OK’ to save.