BitTorrent Friendly Bandwidth Throttler?

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NetEqualizer must have noticed the attention Netenforcer received last week, after they claimed to be the first to throttle encrypted BitTorrent traffic. In a press release they now claim this title, but it looks like a cheap marketing stunt to me.

netequalizerNetequalizer is a bandwidth shaping device that simply throttles all steady/heavy traffic on a network if the pipes (tubes if you insist) are cluttering. But, there’s more. They claim that the device is even successful in throttling encrypting BitTorrent traffic:

NetEqualizer’s ability to keep BitTorrent traffic in check will not be affected by encryption techniques neither today nor into the future.

But I doubt if these claims are true, perhaps it’s just an attempt to make it to slashdot or digg, and get some new customers.


1. If you take a look at their website you will notice that the word “BitTorrent” is not even mentioned, not in the product description, and not in their f.a.q.

2. NetEqualizer works like this:

a) Look at all the connections on the network
b) How long has each connection been active
c) How much bandwidth has this connection used since it first started
d) How much bandwidth has this connections used in the last 8 seconds

Then it decides, based on these rules if the traffic should be throttled or not. They claim to throttle connections that use a lot of bandwidth, for a relatively long time. If they detect a connection that meets these criteria, they close it.

Funny thing is that BitTorrent has a lot of open and half-open connections, if one is closed, another one is opened within a few seconds. This connection will then not be throttled until it generated a significant amount of bandwidth, for a relatively long time. This means BitTorrent traffic will be relatively unaffected.

I’m not a network expert, so perhaps I’m wrong, but my reasoning sounds plausible. Overall I think this device is actually not as evil as it sounds. If the network is not busy then take no action is taken, and users have all the bandwidth they need. It only throttles the heavy consumers, if the network reaches its maximum capacity.

And to me, it even seems to be BitTorrent friendly


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