Probably all of you have heard about PeerGuardian (PG), the P2P utility program that is able to block incoming connections based on IP blocklists. PG’s blocklists contained IP addresses of known anti piracy agencies, various government entities, spyware oriented servers, etc and the software effectively prevented these addresses from making contact with your BitTorrent client or any other file sharing program. For those very reason, PG was hugely popular among the file sharing community back in its day. However, the program did not have a bright future as its developer discontinued development and moved on to other projects. This is where PeerBlock comes in – it’s an actively maintained fork of PeerGuardian 2 with lots of updates to the core application ( and not just a new list IP addresses). A new stable release of PeerBlock (v1.1.0) was just released yesterday with several new features including signed drivers for Windows 7, direct iBlocklists.com integration and more.
Usually, this is the kind of an app only computer power users tend to use. However, using PeerBlock is dead simple – even novices should easily be able to figure out how this works. For those of you who are unfamiliar with PB, here’s a brief description of the software, as mentioned on its homepage:
PeerBlock lets you control who your computer "talks to" on the Internet. By selecting appropriate lists of "known bad" computers, you can block communication with advertising or spyware oriented servers, computers monitoring your p2p activities, computers which have been "hacked", even entire countries! They can't get in to your computer, and your computer won't try to send them anything either.
And best of all, it's free!
Setting up PeerBlock is easy - you basically need to install it. There is no need to configure your file sharing clients manually to integrate with PB - the program will run in the background and block all incoming or outgoing connections from/to your PC based on its blocklists. It comes with several pre configured block lists, one each containing IP addresses of anti P2P organizations. spyware/adware servers, advertising servers and educational institutions. The client will automatically update these lists online, as updates become available (much like how anti virus software download new definition files). You can create lists of your own or download additional lists from http://www.iblocklist.com/lists.php
A new stable build of PeerBlock has just been released. If I’m not mistaken, this is the newest stable release to hit the web after almost 6 months. You can download the installer and view release notes using the links below.
[Click Here] to download PeerBlock 1.1.0 Release 518 installer
[Click Here] to view release notes
Note that although software such as PeerBlock and PeerGuardian do provide an additional layer of security to your p2p activities, they should not be mistaken for all-in-one magical solutions that will shield you from all kinds snoopers. For example, anti piracy agencies might use IP addresses that are not yet included in PB’s blocklists. Therefore always be on the lookout for prying eyes – don’t let a sense of false security fool you.