This is a modification to the download clients for BitTorrent which adds displays for a number of interesting statistics:
These statistics can easily tell you whether your download is likely to complete: if there are seeds connected or if there is a complete copy of the file distributed among the other clients. They can also tell you when it is reasonable for you to disconnect from a torrent: when your share rating goes above 1.0 and if there are other seeds around.
Here's what the output looks like on btdownloadgui:
This tells you that this is a healthy torrent: there are plenty of seeds, and even if all the seeds disappeared in an instant, there are at least 3 copies of every byte of the file distributed among the peers. Unfortunately my share rating is still a bit low, so I should stay connected for a while until I give back enough bandwidth to the rest of the clients, especially since it doesn't look like they're downloading very fast.
Here's the patch: extra-stats2-3.2.1b.diff. It is against version 3.2.1b of BitTorrent and is known to not apply cleanly on version 3.1. If you don't have a patch utility handy, you can also grab a modified tarball or a Windows installer. It modifies all of the standard single-torrent clients (headless, curses, and GUI) to display the new statistics, but not the 'many' clients.
New in version 2: The "seen earlier" statistic for the seeds was changed to "seen recently" by imposing a limit of one hour since a seed was last connected to. The overall download speed stat was added. The GUI client was included in the patch (thanks to the contribution of Christian Sweitzer) and a Windows installer created. And as an added unrelated bonus patch, the default tracker status page now includes real client versus NAT client counts.
UPDATE! The statistics patch has been rolled into the latest version of the experimental client, which also includes controls for upload bandwidth limiting and other cool stuff. You should go get that version instead, especially if you use the GUI or Windows client.
Comments and feedback are welcome at btstats-at-edkeyes-dot-org, or you can talk to me as ChocoEd on the BT development IRC channel.
Last modified 4/12/2003, Edward Keyes