Most popular BitTorrent clients including uTorrent and Vuze support magnet links, although only a handful of people are actually using them. With magnet links BitTorrent can fire up a download without even having to download a .torrent file.
The link uses the torrent hash and DHT to download content and allows for additional trackers to be added. Thus far, most BitTorrent users have ignored this alternative download method, but thanks to the Magnetiser Firefox add-on, this might change.
The idea behind the add-on is simple. It allows users of meta-search engines, such as Torrentz.com, to download a torrent’s magnet link without having to go to an external site where the torrent is hosted.
“I’ve recently written an add-on for Firefox that generates magnet links for torrent pseudo-indexers that don’t host torrents but does list them by their hashes. So far it supports Torrentz and isoHunt, but the code is simple and could be extended to any searchable indexer that shows the info hash either in the URL, or on the torrent page,” the coder of the add-on told TorrentFreak.
Once the add-on is installed, users can click the ‘magnetise’ link at the bottom right of their Firefox window when they are on a torrent detail page on Torrentz. This will launch a new window that will prompt you to pick the torrent client of your choice.
We have to say that this usage of magnet links is a great idea, and it works like a charm. Not only does it save time, it also comes in handy when a torrent is no longer available on the external site. The only downside is that the title of the download as it appears in your client will not be very descriptive.
The add-on is not available on Firefox’s add-on section just yet, but those who want to try it can download this xpi file and drag it into the Firefox browser window. After it’s installed users can add additional trackers, but since it includes the most-used trackers by default, this is not really needed.