From Paul Gil,
Your Guide to Internet for Beginners.
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Where Downloaders Find Music and Movie Files.
(continued from "The Top 5 Best Torrent Search Engines")
As of May 1, 2008, the most popular Bit Torrent search engine sites are listed below. This list is selected from hundreds of reader email suggestions, and is updated weekly. You are welcome to submit your suggestions for inclusion into this list.
This list is in random order. Special thanks to the many About.com readers who help keep this list current via their email submissions.
Warning for new users: while P2P file sharing technology is completely legal, many of the files traded through P2P are copyrighted. Unless you live in Canada where users are shielded from P2P lawsuits, then downloading P2P files may put you at risk for a civil lawsuit in any other country. These lawsuits are usually class-action suits, filed against groups of users who blatantly copy and distribute copyrighted materials. Recently, the MPAA, the RIAA, and the governments of England and Australia took several thousand users to court, demanding that they pay thousands of dollars in copyright infringement penalties.
Your Internet Service Provider may, at their discretion, release their logs of your downloading activity to potential copyright plaintiffs. The more megabytes you download, the more you risk being sued by copyright protection groups. Please know this risk before you use any of the following Torrent search engines below.
Related: How to speed up your Bit Torrent download speeds
Related: Anonymity software - conceal your identity from prying eyes with Peer Guardian
April 2008: Demonoid.com is now back online! They have established themselves outside of the USA, and have resumed torrent operations. Demonoid is still a private community, and members are held liable for any leeching that their invited friends do in this community. If you are lucky enough to get a Demonoid membership, invite your friends carefully, lest you lose your own membership.
BiteNova (formerly known as “Bi-Torrents”, BiteNova is a free Torrent site with a spartan look and fast searching format.)
September, 2007: Isohunt is barring American users from connecting to American torrent trackers. American users, however, can still use Isohunt to find torrents, and connect to third party trackers.
Torrentscan.com (a "meta-search" engine, which is a search engine that searches other search engines)
Torrentspy.com March 24, 2008: Torrentspy has voluntarily closed its doors. Instead of conforming to the American court mandates to change their privacy policies, the Torrentspy team has opted instead to cease operations. A sad day for downloaders everywhere.
Bitsoup Bitsoup is a growing favorite amongst P2P downloaders. As the trend towards private torrent sharing continues, you will need to signup and join as a member to participate in the Bitsoup swarm.
LegalTorrents.com (As the name implies, this is a database of public-domain content. Thanks to Anand S. for this URL.)
Snarf It! (born from previous Suprnova influences)
Torrentz.com (special thanks to reader, Jonathan R., for this link)
Mininova.org has 190,000 torrents indexed as of April, 2007. Mininova is the successor to Suprnova, one of the original big torrent databases of the Web.
Torrentreactor.to (Torrentreactor has made a comeback from a hijacking and an uncooperative hosting service. They have moved to a different server setup and a Tonga country domain outside the USA. Read the details on their home page.)
Torrentbox.com FYI: like Isohunt, Torrentbox is being sued by the MPAA as of February 28, 2006. The days for this fine search engine may be numbered.
TorrentTyphoon.com (a unique bittorrent meta-search engine that searches several of the most popular sites. Unfortunately, it does not do a good job categorizing the torrent files themselves)
The Pirate Bay (Pirate Bay, by readership size, is the most popular torrent search site today. Pirate Bay has an immense database of 600,000+ torrents, the largest database at this time.)
(May 31, 2006: The Pirate Bay has been shut down by Swedish authorities. Details are available on the Pirate Bay home page.)
(June 2006: The Pirate Bay has restarted operations, now that the police have duplicated the PB hard drives for forensic purposes. Enjoy this database while it is still around, folks!)
**Special mention: ShareTV.org (ShareTV is dedicated to sharing television episodes and entire TV series. Find "24", "Heroes", and "Lost" episodes here. Special thanks to Chris R. for telling us about his web site.)
**Special mention: Torrent-Finder.com (This site has been submitted recently by three readers as their personal favorite torrent search engine. It "meta-searches" 159 torrent sites as of this writing. Special thanks to Dina, Suresh, and ChaOSthEory for this submission.)
From Paul Gil,