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As an “active media trader” (a polite term for someone who downloads and shares “lots of things” – wink-wink!), I have a list of applications that I use on a regular basis. One of them is Limewire which (almost) always gives me good file searching results.

Recently, I came across an application which looks like, works like, and even sounds like Limewire. It has all of LimeWire’s abilities and more; it finds and shares files, connects to six ultrapeers networks, does torrents, integrates with iTunes, is chat-able and skin-able, and is totally free. It It’s called FrostWire. Just like Limewire, Frostwire is also built on Java so they can both work on multiple platforms.

frostwire

The extreme similarities between these two intrigues me, though. Even the boldest copier wouldn’t go that far. A quick Google and Wikipedia search later I found out that FrostWire is actually the clone of LimeWire, developed by (part of) the same team and has been released to the public since October 2005. The full story can be found here.

Anyway, after giving little Frosty a proper trial for a few minutes, I decided to ditch the original and use the clone instead. My (very subjective) reasons are:

– It connects to as many networks as LimeWire Pro so FrostWire is faster than the non-pro version of LimeWire (I used the non-pro Limey).
– It does torrents also, so no other torrent clients are necessary. I haven’t done any scientific tests but I kinda feel downloading torrents using FrostWire is faster than using other Mac torrent clients.
– It’s free. And we all love freebies.

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Still, there are some things that I don’t like about FrostWire:

– It slows my machine – the good ol’ iBook G4. (I know what you’re going to say. Don’t. I love this white ancient baby. But if anybody is willing to buy me a speedier machine, it wouldn’t be polite to reject the kindness, will it?)
– Even though the developer claims that they had a junk filter built in, I found that searches still produces a lot of junk, especially with popular strings. So choose your results carefully.

All in all, it’s one more path to follow for you file hunters out there.

Happy hunting!

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