[BitTorrent] Using BT as a distribution system for apt and yum like software updates

Olaf van der Spek OvdSpek at LIACS.NL
Wed Jun 9 18:42:01 EDT 2004

jarito030507 wrote:

> I am current considering an independent study with a professor of mine
> to study the possibility of using BT as a way to distribute software
> packages. We are aiming at integrating BT into yum to start off and
> then moving to apt. I have a couple of questions for the list about
> this topic:
> First, is anyone currently working on something along these lines? I
> would hate to reinvent something that has already been worked on.
> Second, I read in the specifications for the BT2 protocol that files
> would be able to be shared between torrents. This seems to me to be
> the perfect solution for the software update problem. Seeing as how
> most software updates are rather small, starting full BT sessions for
> each file would be resource intensive and would result in a low
> probability of finding a significant number of peers. I was thinking
> that if the tracker could dynamically build a list of packages for
> each user, then start the torrent for *all* the files, then the
> torrent size would porbably be big enough to warrant the use of BT.
> However, the odds of having two users with the same package list would
> be small. But, if several peers are downloading the same update as
> part of their update list, then they could exchange information with
> each other. 

At the moment each 'swarm' has it's own 'info_hash'. One nice idea might 
be to modify the protocol like this:
Each client tells the tracker the hash of all files it wants to download.
The tracker then returns a 'suitable' list of peers to the client.
Each peer to peer connection would allow multiple indepedent files to be 

> I hope this makes sense. Please ask questions. This idea is in its
> infancy and it would be lovely to get some feedback.
> Thanks,
> Jarret Raim

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