Trends in Information Systems: P2P For Newbies!

26 Feb

In my previous blog I discussed ERP and its uses. Check it out here: https://eternalsunshineoftheismind.wordpress.com/2013/02/18/trends-in-information-systems-erp/

Today I will discuss P2P which is Peer- to – Peer. For those of you who have never heard of this before here is what is involved:

In a P2P network, the “peers” are computer systems which are connected to each other via the Internet. Files can be shared directly between systems on the network without the need of a central server. In other words, each computer on a P2P network becomes a file server as well as a client.

Here is a very simple explanation of P2P for “Newbies”.

Torrent : This is a small metadata file and ends with .torrent extension. This torrent file contains all the information about the files (movies, music, games, etc) that you are downloading. When the P2P download initiates, a torrent file is sent to the computer.

Peer : A peer is another user in the network or the internet (Just like you), who is interested in downloading some files. A peer doesn’t have the complete file on his/her computer.

Seed : As the name says, a seed is the originator of the file. The seed has the complete file on his/her computer. There can be multiple seeds for a same file on the Internet. This makes the P2P sharing more useful.

Swarm : A swarm is the group of people associated with a particular file. This included seeds and peers. Together, all users sharing a torrent are called a swarm. Six peers and two seeds make a swarm of eight.

Leech : A leech is a peer who has a negative effect on the swarm because of very poor share ratio. In other words, downloading much more than they upload. Some leeches hurt the swarm to avoid uploading by using modified clients or limiting their upload speed.

Tracker : The Tracker is the server of the torrent site that monitors or tracks the progress of your download. It keeps track of which seeds and peers are in the swarm. The tracker is not directly involved in the data transfer and does not have a copy of the file.

Snubbed : An uploading client is flagged as snubbed if the downloading client has not received any data from it in over 60 seconds.

DHT : It stands for Distributed Hash Table. This table is used by tracker to compile a list of peers that host a particular file.

In my next blog I will go into more detail as to what is involved in P2P so watch this space!🙂

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