UPDATE: Article update with BitMeTV response. See end of post.
If you’re familiar with private torrent trackers, chances are high that you’ve heard about ‘allowed client lists’. On most private trackers, you can’t just use any BitTorrent client to download torrents – the program you use must be a version that’s allowed by tracker staff. If they feel that a particular client/version is harming the overall health of torrent swarm, they usually don’t think twice about naming it a banned client. However, while it’s normal for lesser known and alpha/beta versions of clients to get banned on private torrent sites, popular clients such as Vuze and uTorrent are allowed on almost every torrent site. However this is soon going to change. What.CD and Waffles.Fm, arguable the two most popular and largest music trackers out there, have just announced that they are planning to ban all versions of Vuze and Deluge from their client whitelists pretty soon.
Following announcement which explains the motives behind this sudden decision is quoted from What.Cd
As staff on this tracker, one of our responsibilities is policing the swarms and making sure that everyone plays fair. Another related responsibility is the management of the client whitelist, to ensure that new clients are added as they're deemed safe, and old clients are removed as they're deemed irrelevant/problematic. On Monday the 22nd, we will be performing a significant set of changes to the client whitelist.
Deluge will be removed from the whitelist. After performing an analysis on our swarms, we found that over 4088 downloads, deluge downloaded, on average, 15.4% more data than the size of the torrent. As it is hard enough for users to maintain ratios already, we feel that it is a bad idea to allow deluge to make this situation worse. This change affects 1.3% of our userbase.
More importantly, all versions of azureus/vuze will be removed from the whitelist. This move is being made in conjunction with our friends over at waffles.fm.
Vuze's twilight hour started approaching when they changed their name from Azureus and began to commercialize their already bloated client. Over the years, this caused its market share to shrink considerably in favour of uTorrent, rtorrent, and transmission. Its ease of modification by cheat client developers and habit of constantly reporting very low upload speeds when no one is downloading anything cause unnecessary headaches for the staff. Additionally, the notoriety of the vuze developers for disliking and refusing to cooperate with private tracker staff has only served to worsen the situation. Vuze's market share has shrunken to 7.1% of our userbase. We are well aware that you 7.1% are still a lot of people - however, we feel that in the long run, you and the rest of the userbase will benefit if you change to a better client.
Our client recommendations are as follows:
Windows: uTorrent 2.x and uTorrent 1.8.x. There is a certain level of controversy surrounding the 'unfairness' of uTorrent 2.0's new protocol (uTP) in the private tracker community. Failing to find evidence of this unfairness ourselves, and seeing significant benefits to the adoption of uTP, we have decided to make uTorrent 2.0 our #1 recommended client - however, be aware that you may not be able to use this client on other trackers.
Mac: uTorrent Mac 0.9.x and Transmission 1.8.x. Both clients are excellent, and transmission has a very friendly and cooperative dev team. To create torrents, you can use the CreateTorrent dashboard widget or the mktorrent command line utility.
Linux: rtorrent 0.8.x, Transmission 1.8.x, KTorrent 3.x, and uTorrent in WINE. rtorrent is WhatMan's very fast personal favourite, and all hardcore linux users should be using it. There also exist numerous frontends for it, such as ntorrent, rutorrent and wTorrent, in case you aren't up to using the console like a man.
If you use deluge or vuze, we understand that this change may be inconvenient for you. We also understand that you may feel a great deal of rage right now, due to the loss of your traditional client which has no doubt treated you with loyalty for many years. However, we implore you to think of the long term benefits for the site and staff, and yourselves - you'll be surprised at what your system can do with the RAM that vuze isn't hogging anymore.
In order to make the transition easier, we have given all users the ability to download a zip file with all of their snatches - click [download] next to the 'Snatched' stat on your profile. This also means that all users now have access to the collector - a feature to download all torrents by an artist, in a collage, or in your bookmarks.
We apologize for the short term inconvenience this will cause, and thank you for your cooperation.
--The What.CD and waffles.fm staff
Waffles.fm staff have expressed their views in a similar statement which is quoted below:
Waffles, working together with What.cd, has concluded over the course of several months, that Vuze and Deluge are problematic to the overall health of torrent swarms.
Deluge, through careful testing, has been discovered to download a significantly higher amount of data per torrent than comparable clients.
Vuze, on the other hand, has been increasingly used by ratio cheaters through various modifications to the program. We are aware there's a handful of legitimate users, though, thus we are making this announcement. Effective Monday February 22, both clients will be banned from both sites. If you continue to use either program past this date, you will not be banned from Waffles, but your ability to seed and leech will cease (and you will only get a message to switch clients from the tracker) until you choose new torrent software.
For Windows, if you don't want to use µTorrent for some reason (though we highly recommend it!), we do allow the official BitTorrent client, along with the latest versions of BitComet and BitTornado. If you do choose µTorrent, we highly suggest using version 2.0 or later. Using 2.0 will allow you to take advantage of the new uTP technology, which connects to peers faster, is home router friendly, and doesn't overload your system connections like other torrent clients. The downside to uTP is that outdated clients that don't support it will get lower priority when connections are made. If you use one of these older clients, we recommend that request the authors of those clients add uTP support.
On the Mac, we suggest Transmission or µTorrent Mac. Currently on Waffles, the 1.8.x branch of Transmission is banned, as we've discovered some instances where it may misrepresent transfer stats, but we are working diligently with the Transmission developers to correct this problem.
Finally, for Linux, we suggest Transmission, rtorrent, or ktorrent.
We know that this will upset a few of you, but we believe that we must do this for the betterment of the community as a whole.
I’m not sure about Deluge but the decision to ban Vuze wouldn’t be too popular. The new interface of Vuze is bloated as hell but there are many people who run the client using classic UI which resembles Azureuz 2.X and 3.X look and feel. However, what tracker staff say about cheat mods is true – Vuze is one of the most common clients exploited by cheat mod developers and there are several versions of hacked Vuze clients available, most of them capable of polluting the swarm with fake data.
All in all it’s an interesting decision by What and Waffles and definitely a bold move. It remains to be seen if other major trackers will follow suit and ban these clients into oblivion.
EDIT: BitMeTV, a leading TV torrent tracker, has responded that they will not be banning Azureuz/Vuze anytime soon. Quoted from homepage:
On another relevant note: We will NOT be banning Azureus/Vuze as some other sites have just done. :)