[BitTorrent] Re: BitTorrent for input file staging on clusters?

Nathan Edwards nje01 at yahoo.com
Wed Dec 1 18:09:53 EST 2004

--- In BitTorrent at yahoogroups.com, John Hoffman <theshadow at s...> wrote:
> (1) "Connect only from IP's" isn't worthwhile, IMO; no one can download 
> without the torrent, and if you block the tracker's infopage, they
> even try unless they guess the hash value.

This is more of a (paranoid) policy thing...I want to make sure I have
some ground to stand on when my sysadmin says "your running what,
where?" I'm not so concerned about someone "stealing" the data via BT,
but of someone exploiting a bug in the tracker or client to break into
the machine. Of course, given that the incoming IP address can be
spoofed, it is not clear I've done anything useful. 

> (2) In future versions of the official release, the torrent directory 
> will be reparsed so frequently that forcing a refresh isn't
> (BitTornado does this now.)

I nearly went with that approach, but since the current client
re-parses the allowed directory entirely, I was worried about bogging
down the tracker. Are the URL's the tracker responds to an official
part of the spec? If so, it'd be a big deal to introduce a new
"keyword" and I guess polling would be the way to go.
> (3) Unescaping URLs for the tracker is problematic, since the info hash 
> and peer ID may contain those characters.  I recommend coding your 
> script properly from the start.

Ah. I wondered why it was being done this way. That explains another
bug I had to fix...that I guess I introduced with this
change...probably. My fix for the bug I introduced was to use b2a_hex
and a2b_hex to encode the info_hash and peer ID, which "looks nicer"
in the URL anyway and is consistent with the other places the hash
appears (btshowmetainfo, infopage). 

Thanks for your comments, especially the last one...which explains a
considerable amound of recent hair-pulling. :-)



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