P2P: We’ve Come a Long Way…
The Pirate Bay Wants to Set Guinness World Record
If we look a few years back when the p2p networks emerged and this phenomenon was beginning to extend, some numbers are still impressive – Napster, for example, had more than 1.5 million simultaneous users, FastTrack had about 5 million, and eDonkey2000 had a similar – if not larger – population. But that was before BitTorrent came into existence – a new era began then.
Today, some misunderstanding and confusion persists when terms such as file-sharing, P2P network, and the way BitTorrent protocol works, are subjects of interest and discussions. Let’s start with file-sharing – this is just an umbrella expression which actually describes any method of transferring files. For example, newsgroups like Kazaa, mIRC, OpenNap, all represent file-sharing resources. File sharing refers to any community where files are transferred from one computer to another.
However, when it comes to the way those file get transferred we have to be a little more precise. So, BitTorrent is not a P2P network after all, but a protocol. The protocol shows how files are shared, transferred, stored, etc. This also applies to OpenNap which is not a network either, but a communication protocol.
So, which and where are the P2P networks then? Well, we’ll find them within the protocol. Simply put, users cannot search BitTorrent, but they can search the trackers within the protocol. The Pirate Bay, which we announced on November 4 to be the largest P2P network in the world, is the perfect example for such a file-sharing network that uses the BitTorrent protocol to allow users to share content. Similarly, BunnyMatrix is a file-sharing network that uses the OpenNap protocol for a similar purpose.
Having over 21 million peers after latest reports, The Pirate Bay detaches itself from the rest of the p2p crowd easily. As a celebration of their success, the administrators announced their funny intention to gain entry into the Guinness Book of World Records as “The Biggest file sharing network in the world.”
The Pirate Bay has indeed written history for P2P and its constant growth proves wrong all those who have rushed into claiming that the popularity of P2P technology is dropping off.