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     Volume 7 Issue 45 | November 14, 2008 |

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Sci Tech

Downloading Basics

Syed Nadim Noah

The term downloading relates to the activity we perform, when we want to save things we saw in websites into our hard disks. It can be anything and everything, starting from photos, music, software, to e-books, comics and drama serials. Now, most of you readers must be pondering, "I can perform all of these things.” However think again, “Can you download everything and more importantly, are you capable of downloading them in the most efficient manner?” This comprehensive, but brief guide will help you to do just that.

Part 1: In the first phase I'll be discussing the easier tasks such as downloading images. Although rare, but I know that there are people who press right click and selects “save target as,” for downloading simple pictures. Instead of doing that, it is much easier if you select 'save picture as,' and put the picture files in your desired directory. It is much faster, but works only if you want to save pictures that are displayed direct on web pages, like the images in Facebook or Ringo. For downloading photo files from email messages or file hosting websites, it is better if you select 'save target as,' by right clicking once, on your mouse.

Part 2: This part deals with the download of more complex files like various music files and programs. For downloading audio files and different types of software, it is good to use some type of downloading software. This is because, when you live in a developing country like Bangladesh, and frequent load shedding is like an everyday meal, it disrupts your download progress. Audio files like the mp3 ranges from sizes of 3MB to 10MB, while software can range from 2MB to 150MB. If your dial-up connection gets disconnected, or if you have broadband but unfortunately the electricity goes away, and you don't own a UPS, you will be kicking yourself when you see that your download has to commence again from the start. Since the original download manager of Windows XP or Vista doesn't support resume, meaning to save your download progress and begin from where it got interrupted, it is advisable to use download managers like the famous Download Accelerator Plus (DAP). It will not only save your download progress, but also speed up your download to some extent. Some recommended websites for downloading music files and software are:

1. English songs: www.yourmp3.net

2. Hindi songs: www.bollyfm.net

3. Bangla songs: www.music.com.bd

4. Software's: www.download.com

Part 3: Some important files which are quite big, are usually uploaded to various file sharing servers like Rapidshare or Megaupload. The problem occurs when the sizes of the files are above 10MB and also because these websites don't support the use of download accelerators. This means that there is no resume, and if there is a single interruption, you have to begin the download again. Most of us have come across this ordeal whenever we have to download files from these sites. Moreover, if you are not a registered user to these servers, you are given a lot of limitations. The fact is that, there is no straight solution but an alternate path to ease the problem. First of all it is better if you allocate time during the midnight to download from these websites. The second problem obviously is the disruption of your snooze time. This can be fixed by downloading Rapget from (www.rapget.com). This marvelous piece of software enables users to copy and paste download links of files of hundreds of servers, and schedules various files to be downloaded consecutively one after another. Plus, you can even program it to turn off your PC when download finishes. A good website for finding download links of these servers is (www.filestube.com).

Part 4: The last and the most complicated of all the phases are the download of movies and games. Gone are the days of downloading with outmoded software like Ares, Kazaa and Limeware. This is the age of torrents. Dear readers, say hello to Utorrent, Bittorrent and Bitcomet. Most of you all maybe unfamiliar with these software and thus, let me enlighten you on this situation. Torrents are files that create links to thousands of PCs all over the world, having the same files you want to download. It is quite similar to Kazaa and its associates, but much safer, quicker and reliable. You can download any and every file you could ever want, starting from the oldest to the latest, be it movies, games, books, the most happening music videos, serials like Heroes Season 3 and even anime. All you have to do is, download any of the mentioned software's above, get the torrent files, which are actually small files to link your PC to the people who have the same file, from torrent sharing servers like (www.mininova.org), select add torrent from the inside of your torrent downloading software and lastly choose a desired directory for saving them to your PC. Some information you do need to know are; when downloading anything from torrents, check how many seeders(S) and leechers (L) there are. Seeders are the number of people who have the full file and leechers are the people who are downloading them. The system is excellent in the sense that, everyone has to upload and download at the same time. This means that every file is broken into numerous parts and the parts you have may not be the same as someone else's. Thus, no one has to have the full file to upload and so everyone is getting a share and at the end ends up with the full file. Download speed is unlimited, meaning it will give you any amount of speed that your connection can offer. There is obviously the facility of resume support plus, sizes of files doesn't matter, meaning there are whole seasons of serials like Friends or That 70's Show, which are closely about 35GB. However, some of you may not be able to download from these websites, if your broadband service providers blocked it. This is usually because, the program tends to take a lot of bandwidth. Other than that, happy downloading!

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