When limewire was shut down this week, America panicked and started scrambling to find an alternative way to legally download music and videos, a Limewire replacement. (China and Cuba would have panicked too, but their communist governments won’t allow them to access the Internet). Anyway… Maybe not all of America got scared, but everyone in our office. When our boss wasn’t looking (too late now), we took it upon ourselves to use some company time to test drive a few alternatives to Limewire. There are only 3 of us here, and we tried Frostwire, RapidShare, and Vuse. We will probably all get fired, but it’s worth it if it means being able to get our hands on all the (legal) music and (legal) movies out there. Did we mention that we are only downloading legal music at our office? You should too.
The winner was Vuze. We won’t get into the details as to why, but the short answer was, its a simple interface (even geeks like us appreciate simple), it hides some of the compexity behind torrents (explained in a second), and the search mechanism seemed to operate faster for us (even though it’s still just using Google).
** As a disclaimer, we have ZERO affiliation with Vuze. Our #1 priority was a FAST, EASY, and SIMPLE way to download files, just like Limewire. We really didn’t care what we used, or who won our test, as long as it was fast, easy, and simple (like Jeff’s date last Saturday night).
So… If you are wanting to download files like you did on Limewire
, here is a quick rundown on how to do that. The technology for this Limewire replacement is a little different, but this should get you started and downloading within 5 minutes.
1. Grab a copy of to Vuze. Install it. YOU DO NOT need to install any of the add-on stuff like the google search bar or anything like that. Nor do you need to purchase the pro version. You can, but you don’t need it.
2. Search for a song, movie or whatever.
** THIS IS WHERE IT IS DIFFERENT THAN LIMEWIRE.
3. Searching will take you to a result screen like this.
The number one thing to remember here is that you aren’t really searching other user’s computers as much as you are now searching for files out on the internet called “torrents”. Ignore the name. This is just another way of saying “your song or video wrapped up in wrapping paper.” Download the torrent, and you’ve downloaded your file. Sometimes a torrent can contain one file, or it can contain an entire album.
4. Once you click the file, your computer may ask you, “Which program do I use to open this torrent file?” If it does, just tell it to use Vuze.
5. While your files are downloading, you will see a status update similar to Limewire.
6. After your files are downloaded, open up your documents folder (My Documents on Windows), look for the folder called Vuze Downloads, and your files should be in there.
1. What is a torrent?
A torrent is just a small file that has the extension of .torrent. This file tells your software how to download the file (or files). In other words, if you want to download a (legal) christmas CD, you might find a torrent called “christmasCD.torrent”. Using Vuse to open that torrent file will start a small chain reaction that causes Vuze to locate and download all the songs on that CD.
2. Where are the songs?
They are in all kinds of locations: people’s computers on the internet, public storage locations, private storage locations, etc. Google can find them for you. Vuze can download them. And your media player can play them.
3. What is the difference between Vuze and Limewire?
The main difference is the methodolgy by which the files are downloaded and where the files are stored. More often than not, torrent files are out on the internet in a more permanent location, whereas Limewire files are single files that are located on a person’s computer and identified when they are connected to the internet. This is a gross over-simplification, but if you want more details, just google it and there are lots of more complicated explanations.
If you enjoyed this blog, please send make a Red Bull donation to our office. Sugar-free preferred (because Jeff is a sissy).