Do you BitTorrent? Do you download stuff from Kazza, Limewire or whatever you crazy kids are downloading from nowadays? We all know that it is illegal to download copyrighted works from the Internet. No matter if it is a movie, music, an application or even a textbook. You could be subject to hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines. We have heard horror stories of a college kid or a grandfather being sued by the RIAA or another company hell bent on you not downloading their proprietary materials. So what do you do? Do you stop downloading?
I know some people that have – but most of you are just downloading away without a care in the world. Would you like a little bit of extra downloading protection?
Companies set up fake peers and trackers that either send you malicious files or note your IP address. Now using Peer Block we can stop them from getting all of us! Once a IP range is detected as being malicious they are added to the Peer Block database. Peer Block will then prevent your machine from allowing them to connect. It is not foolproof by any means but for those of you who keep on downloading, this might be a little piece of mind.
Let’s take a look at how it works. You start your downloading protection by downloading the application from here.
Just unzip the contents and run the exe file. If you have show extensions turned off in your Windows Explorer it will be the icon shaped like a blue cube. It is the third one down in my screenshot below:
Once you run the executable the setup wizard will begin – the program does not install to the best of my knowledge. It looks like it lives in the directory you unzip it to making it a great companion for portable uTorrent.
We hit next on the first screen to move along through the installer. The rest of the screens will have information for you to fill in. On the second screen which you can see below, this screen allows you to pick what you want blocked. For most of us it will just be P2P (for most file sharing applications) but you can also block ads, spyware and educational sites. You can import or create your own list and there is an option to allow http always – this means you can browse via your web browser to sites in the ranges that are in your list. Check which ones you want and hit next to continue. You should also read the recommendation at the bottom of the screen.
Now these lists change daily so just like your antivirus software you need to keep your definitions up to date. Configure this on the next screen that you can see below.
That is it. You have a little bit more downloading protection in your online adventures of bootlegging and pirating”¦ Arrrr matey!
The application will start updating the Peer Block application and the selected lists that you choose way back at the beginning.
Once the updates are complete the application will generate a list cache so it can do its thing.
That’s it. The application is now running and blocking what you requested. You can click on the disable button to disable the whole kit and kaboodle or click the allow HTTP to allow web access to an address in your list.
Do you have any other methods of staying safe? We would love to hear about it in the comments!