uTorrent is a freeware client using BitTorrent protocol to download files from peer-to-peer networks. From a Mac user’s standpoint, torrents are great because they offer a vast variety of files stored on torrent trackers. Using peer-to-peer file sharing allows uTorrent users download items from multiple sources at the same time. Provided there are enough users (seeders) distributing some data, the download speed is quite fast. However, there are times when uTorrent can get slow and sluggish on a Mac. Read on to learn how to speed up uTorrent downloads on your Mac.
Why Does uTorrent Get Slow on My Mac?
Lack of hard disk space is the most frequently ignored issue that can cause uTorrent’s slow work. HDD space shortage can not only slow down the uTorrent application but overall Mac’s performance. Also, uTorrent can become sluggish due to the overflow of deleted file entries kept in the app’s registry. Each time uTorrent loads, it checks the list of downloads to check the file entries. This operation uses up app’s resources on broken records and outdated .plst files processing, causing its slow work.
Mac users with little experience may ask themselves, "Should I use a registry cleaner?" to speed up my uTorrent download. This won’t help much, so read on to learn how to deal with this issue.
The other reasons decreasing uTorrent’s performance may include wrong settings, limited internet service provider rates, and firewall problems. So, which areas should you pay attention to speed up Torrent on Mac OS?
Tip #1: Correct Port Settings
Typically, torrent networks use the TCP port 6881 and above by default. Some ISPs choose to limit the connection on the port range of 6881-6999. That's why you might want to set your TCP port above 10,000. For this, do the following:
- Go to uTorrent -> Preferences -> Network.
- Click the ‘Randomize Now’ button to get the TCP Port number above 10,000.
- Disable ‘Randomize port during launch’ option, because it can mess uTorrent’s download speed.
- Tick ‘Automatically map port’ if you’re using a router.
Also, feel free to use online port check-up services to see if uTorrent’s default TCP port is open or blocked. In case the port is blocked, switch to another one.
Tip #2: Correct uTorrent client settings
Another way to speed up your uTorrent download is to set the correct upload limits and the number/quality of peers. Typically, the more upload is given out, the more download is received from other peers. Still, leaving the upload unlimited isn’t an option since that will hinder your outgoing communications.
Using online upload calculators will help to discover the optimum upload speed of your uTorrent app based on your internet connection. To determine your upload speed, run an online test like SpeedSmart, InternetHealth, XFinity Speed Test, etc. Try uploading files at a variety of speeds starting at 80% of your maximum speed capacity and gradually going down.
Making a bandwidth setup is another way of speeding up your uTorrent file upload. Set a limit on the seeding rate and a number of active torrents/downloads in queue with the optimum upload number in mind. These preferences surely depend on the quality of your internet connection, so play around with the settings to acquire the optimum result.
Tip #3: Correct firewall/router settings
One of the ways of giving your uTorrent a speed boost is port forwarding. Port forwarding or port mapping is all about redirecting a communication request from one IP address/port number combination to another through the network gateway (a router or firewall).
If no proper permissions are granted to incoming or outgoing communications, a firewall will block them by default. This is why the firewall permissions must allow TCP and UDP communications in both directions. It is possible to set permissions for the uTorrent app in general and uTorrent port in particular. Making the uTorrent port settings is more preferable.
As for routers, Mac users are given two options here. One of the ways is to make settings for UPnP (Universal Plug and Play) built into uTorrent. With UPnP, any application can create a port mapping via the router without user’s consent. Even though it’s quite handy, this may pose a security issue, if used outside the residential networks. This is why if you wish to use this method on your Mac, run a test to see if it’s prone to malicious attacks through UPnP.
If you’re looking for a more secure option, use the second option and set up the port forwarding manually. For this, use the PortForward.com guideline. To check if both TCP and UDP are forwarded on your router, go to Options -> Setup Guide.
uTorrent allows downloading large and rare files via peer-to-peer networks. However, Mac users may be disappointed with app’s slow work. There are several ways to speed up uTorrent by making specific port, client, firewall and router settings. Having enough hard disk space on your Mac will also help in boosting uTorrent’s performance.