How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

transmission icon   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile PhoneFrom its humble beginnings some ten years ago, peer-2-peer file sharing has evolved in leaps and bounds, with the majority of Internet traffic now focused on the “torrent” protocol. Torrent clients are now so advanced that they don’t even need a centralised tracker anymore – just give them a torrent and they can seek out peers themselves.

The latest iteration of the two most popular torrent clients also allow for remote control – so let’s see today how to make use of the remote control functionality from your mobile phone as a mobile torrent client. Although I will show how to access this from your mobile, we will also be covering access from other PCs along the way.

For a Mobile Torrent Client, You Will Need:

  • A modern torrent client. I recommend uTorrent for Windows, and Transmission for Mac.
  • An iPhone or Android mobile, or at least a phone capable of full Internet browsing.

Setting Up Your Torrent Client (Windows – uTorrent)

Firstly, make sure you are using the latest uTorrent. At this time, it’s 2.2. You can check from Help -> Check for Updates.

Open up the Options -> Preferences menu (or press Ctrl-P).

utorrent webgui   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

From the sidebar, select Web UI, then tick the box to Enable Web UI, set a password and username, and I’d also suggest changing the default port number. In this case I’ve made it 9091.

To access your torrent client from another computer on the local network, you need only type your IP address, then a colon and the port number, and /gui/. The easiest way to find your IP address is to click Start, type CMD, then hit Enter. A command line window should open, type IPCONFIG and hit Enter again. Look for the line that says IPv4 address.

windows viewip   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

Here I can see that my IP is 192.168.0.7, so from another computer, I type in http://192.168.0.7:9091/gui/ to access the web interface.

utorrent fromosx.png   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

Setting Up Your Torrent Client (Mac – Transmission)

With Transmission installed and open, select Preferences from the menu, and open the Remote tab.

Tick the box to Enable Remote Access, and enable authentication. Note down or remember the port number you specified.

tranmssion enable web gui   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

Close the preferences to save your settings. As a quick test, hop over to another computer and type in the IP address of your torrent machine, followed by a colon and the port number you wrote down from the preferences screen.

If you don’t know your IP address, the easiest way to to find out is to open the Network section of System Preferences. Here you can see my IP address is 192.168.0.5.

ip osx   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

Bear in mind that on a wireless network this may change often when you disconnect and reconnect, so if you want to keep the same IP – essential if you are to access your torrent client from the Internet – then you will need to change this to a fixed IP. Here you can see I accessed it on my home network from another PC by typing in http://192.168.0.5:9091

transmission fromwindows   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

Accessing From Outside Your Local Network

In order to access your torrent client remote control page from outside of your local (home) network, you’ll need to set up your router to forward the relevant requests to your local PC. Your router will have a separate IP address with which it communicates to the outside world – so we need to link the two together. We will make it so that any requests it receives on port 9091, it will send to your local PC so it can respond with the torrent web interface.

Load up your router interface – try this link for the most common setup -> http://192.168.0.1, but you’ll need the admin password from your router documentation.

port frowarding   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

Router interfaces vary greatly, but you need to look for a section called Port Forwarding. On my router, it’s helpfully in the sidebar under Advanced. Fill in the form to Add Custom Rule. Again, this may vary, but in mine I needed to fill in:

  • Name: for your reference, I named mine “web gui”
  • Start Port and End Port: Since I only need to forward one port, I entered 9091 for both start and end.
  • Protocol: Set this to both just to be sure.
  • Local IP address: This should be the IP of your torrent machine which you noted down earlier. Some interfaces will require you to type in the full four sections of the IP – mine just needs the last number.

Next, figure out your external IP address. The easiest way is to visit this page and copy the number there.

whatismyip   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

To quickly test if it’s working, turn the Wifi network on your iPhone or Android off – this will force it to use 3G. Type in http://(your external IP):9091 (or the port you chose), and don’t forget to include the trailing /gui/ if you’re using uTorrent.

Here is mine, fully set up:

web gui working   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

To remove the address bar and create an icon for your torrent manager, just use Safari’s + > Add to Homescreen function.

To Upload A Torrent From Your Phone

Both uTorrent and Transmission web GUIs come with a handy upload or open button. Just copy the URL of the torrent you want to download, open up your torrent manager on your phone, hit Open, and paste in the URL.

Note: Using the Transmission interface straight in mobile Safari caused a few problems for me, where the keyboard would disappear immediately and I couldn’t paste the URL in. To solve this, add the GUI as a homescreen app using the method I described above.

iphone upload   How To Control Your Torrent Client From Your Mobile Phone

Here are a couple of other helpful torrent related tutorials you might like to follow:

If you have any problems with the mobile torrent client tutorial, let me know in the comments and I’ll do my best to help (please don’t ask me about Android phones though – you might want to try the Answers site to harness the power of fellow readers and editors).

The comments were closed because the article is more than 180 days old.

If you have any questions related to what's mentioned in the article or need help with any computer issue, ask it on MakeUseOf Answers—We and our community will be more than happy to help.

25 Comments -

apbarros

Another good option is Ktorrent for Linux and “Transdroid” for Android.

James Bruce

Thanks Apbaros, good suggestions there.

Sasha Karasev

set dropbox as a watch folder

Aibek

that’s an excellent idea actually

James Bruce

Thanks Sasha, yep watching dropbox is a great idea too, ,but I ran out of room for it in the article!

Aditya

cant access
says invalid request

Aditya

cant access
says invalid request

James Bruce

Is that from your internal network? Or from the outside? What os are you running / accessing from? What is your internal network setup?

Aditya

os is symbian s60

James Bruce

can you access the remote management from another computer? if so, the problem is likely with your phone setup and im afraid i’ve never touched symbian…

Guaranteed SEO

This is such a great source that you will be giving and you give it away for zero cost.

Aditya

os is symbian s60

Olly S

You can now download a Torrent on your remote computer from Safari on your iPhone with this handy bookmarklet for Transmission. Simply click on the bookmarklet when on a torrent site, and then click the download link on the page. The torrent is then downloaded on your remote computer. Awesome.

https://github.com/bulljit/Tra

Olly S

You can now download a Torrent on your remote computer from Safari on your iPhone with this handy bookmarklet for Transmission. Simply click on the bookmarklet when on a torrent site, and then click the download link on the page. The torrent is then downloaded on your remote computer. Awesome.

https://github.com/bulljit/Transmission-Add-Torrent-Bookmarkelet

James Bruce

That is truly awesome. So awesome in fact, it almost deserves another article!

Olly S

Please go ahead! We would love for more people to know about this and test it out. :)

Christian Hagen

Have thought about this, and the documentation for a few torrent-clients have suggested it, but not realised it on my network yet.

As apbarros said, there are also Linux out there. Personally, I’ve never tried KTorrent, but I know Deluge is modular, meaning it can run headless (GUI-less) on ONE computer, show the GUI on another, AND display a web-GUI. I also know, not from own experience, that rTorrent, CLI-client, can run the downloads, and Deluge can be used as a frontend for it.

It’s OK enough that you use µTorrent and Transmission to show the possibility, but there are plenty of other torrent-clients out there too that can be controlled through your phone/the web. At least mentioning a few others with web-GUI, and mention that Transmission is cross-platform (Linux/Windows/Mac) would have been a great improvement with only two or three sentences more in the article. Research might have taken longer though.

James Bruce

Sorry, but my articles focus on Macs and Windows, and I suggested the best torrent client for each. I’m afraid that including linux in the mix would have made the article 1/3 longer, and that wasn’t possible (not a problem of research, it’s a word limit).

On the plus side, we have a new dedicated linux writer, so perhaps he will write a similar article for linux-heads out there, which I’m sure there are a few.