Do You Use uTorrent? Then Be The Master Of Your Preferences

utorrent preferencesuTorrent is by far the most widely used BitTorrent client, and for very good reason. uTorrent is very small, very fast, and portable. It is packed with every feature you’d need to be a total download manager and this long list of features is complemented by a very configurable list of options and preferences.

In this post, I want to help everyone make sure that they’ve got their uTorrent client tweaked to their liking and to optimal performance. There’s a lot going on under the hood and uTorrent is in that elite class of software that many of us use every other day. Such software should be tweaked and played with until you’ve got it running just the way you like it.

If you don’t have uTorrent yet, get it. I’ve used plenty of other torrent handlers The 4+ Best BitTorrent Clients To Get The Most Out Of Your Downloads BitTorrent is still a reliable and pretty fast way to download large files. It might not be the best method out there, but sometimes it sure is the easiest. The clients are straightforward enough and... Read More and no others compare. It’s simply the best out there.

So start up your client and go into the Preferences window, underneath the Options menu.


utorrent preferences

Most of you are probably familiar with tweaking this tab.

One suggestion I will make is that you uncheck the Check association on startup option. If you don’t use other download managers, it shouldn’t be necessary. It can also slightly speed up client start time.

Under the When Downloading table, I also recommend that you check Prevent standby if there are active torrents, especially if you like to download overnight. Doing so will keep your computer from going on standby, thus powering down your wireless card or other network interface and disconnecting you from the Internet.


utorrent preference settings

If you, like me, store your downloads on an external drive then this is a pretty important section of the preferences.

Although you can see I’m not doing it in this screenshot, many would recommend that you store new downloads on your local drive and then move completed downloads to your external drive. Doing so will be less stressful on the external drive, as USB devices don’t have the same read and write capabilities as your internal drive.

The Automatically load torrents from setting is a good way to allow your uTorrent installation to be truly “portable” with an external drive, as you can seed and download from anywhere as long as you store your torrent files on that drive.


utorrent preference settings

This is a very important tab. Disregard my pathetic speed limits here, if you will.

My strongest suggestion is that you get a feel for your maximum upload and download rates through Speedtest and set your limitations accordingly. We all know how crazy ISPs are about torrent traffic, so I’d really always recommend throttling your upload and download speeds to something responsible.

The Maximum upload rate and Maximum download rate are global settings, not per torrent. They are in kB/sec. Many of you are on connections where you’re more familiar with megabytes, and there are 1024 kB in 1 MB.

The Number of Connections table also has very important numbers. Higher numbers here could actually cause your uTorrent client to require more CPU usage. Set them as you see fit.

Transfer Cap

utorrent preference settings

I just mentioned those crazy, torrent-hating ISPs. If your ISP forces a monthly cap on your download and upload, you absolutely need to use this. It’s very self-explanatory and allows you to set limits at each level.


utorrent preferences

The scheduler is a very cool and thoughtful feature that a lot of you should be able to appreciate.

If you live with others and share a connection, don’t be that guy using up all of the bandwidth. Set up your scheduler to limit upload and download speeds during peak or home hours. Let your downloads go unthrottled overnight or when everyone is at work. Clicking on squares in the grid will allow you to change their color, and function, respective to the hour in the chart.

In the screenshot, I am throttling my speeds from 7 PM to midnight.

While I’ve covered a lot here, there are plenty more preferences that you need to look over yourself. The UI Settings tab is a good example. Set up your uTorrent so that it’s an enjoyable, smooth downloading experience, not a chore. Take five minutes out of your day to do this and it could improve your Internet and system performance in the future.

Make sure you check out our uTorrent Tips & Tricks uTorrent Tips & Tricks Read More guide, too! Let me know what you think of uTorrent and these tips in our comments.  Maybe you have some tips of your own?

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  1. Alina
    November 30, 2016 at 5:05 pm

    can you make one for mac too? these screenshots are from windows and dont help mac users as the preferences are different.

  2. Abba Jee
    November 29, 2012 at 2:51 pm

    Thanks for sharing both articles this one and uTorrent Tips & Tricks

  3. Emily Anderson
    November 7, 2012 at 1:13 pm

    10x, but I can also be the master of my preferences in torchbrowser, and I can also DL vids and songs with it. uTorrent sucks :|

  4. David Fielder
    October 16, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    I hate how everyone assumes since I have utorrent on my mac that I am pirating stuff. I like using it to download ISO that my school offers, but they block the torrents so that you have to use direct download and it takes forever.

  5. Alex Downs
    October 15, 2012 at 6:52 pm

    I prefer Tixati but this is a good program.

  6. Dave Hill
    September 16, 2012 at 1:29 pm

    I run Utorrent on an XP machine and my top tip would be CTRL+ALT+DEL to open task manager - close any unwanted apps down and then right click on utorrent , set priority to high or real time and you will almost certainly see an increase in speed. Also within utorrent itself click the files tab - you can right click on any or all of the files in any torrent and skip tham or change their priority. also right click on the torrents in the top pane and you can set the bandwidth available to them and update the tracker they use - all good for speeding things up

  7. Angus Kong
    September 15, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    using to share all the trouble

  8. Ahmed Khalil
    August 22, 2012 at 8:47 am

    it is nice and fast i used to use it

  9. Kaashif Haja
    August 19, 2012 at 3:20 am

    I was using utorrent! Files with low seeds and peers took days to download, so i switched to Tixati. Interface doesn't look good but download speed is better..

  10. john
    August 17, 2012 at 11:04 pm

    Yes it's lighter. But why do i have the impression that vuze is somehow more speedy?

  11. Kevin Hong
    August 15, 2012 at 3:50 am

    Those are some nifty tips. Thanks.

  12. Charlie Player
    August 2, 2012 at 6:19 am

    u torrent iss better than other torrent
    no doubt

  13. Manide
    August 1, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    I was advised to set TRUE value for bt.prio_first_last_piece item (Advanced preferences). This gives higher priority to the first and last piece so that the file could be previewed. See the screenshot for more - if necessary: [Broken URL Removed]

  14. Muhannad Agha
    August 1, 2012 at 4:23 pm

    hands down the best torrent app ever

  15. Pax
    August 1, 2012 at 12:03 am

    In the [Directories] section you should consider typing in directory names like this:


    Note that I have not indicated a drive letter. This help make the entire app portable. Basically, you can move the entire directory structure from machine to external drive to another machine.

    You will also need to create an empty file called settings.dat in the same folder so that settings will be written there instead of the registry. You should do this when you first download the executable. The empty settings.dat insures full portability.

  16. sabih
    July 31, 2012 at 10:56 pm

    There is a tutorial on boosting Download and Upload for literally every single UTorrent version out there. It's just a Google search away.

  17. Drew B
    July 31, 2012 at 10:49 pm

    been using utorrent for years now.

  18. Nathan Kaufman
    July 31, 2012 at 7:59 pm

    You can point the 'open torrent files from ...' and 'move completed downloads to ...' both to different files in your dropbox in order to make use of a surrogate download computer (that YOU own, of course ....) or just to queue up a download from work or the road.

  19. Dany Bouffard
    July 31, 2012 at 7:05 pm

    I use uTorrent from a long time now and I still like it.

  20. Edward Bellair
    July 31, 2012 at 6:59 pm

    Thanks for the pointers and tips.

  21. Ty Neal
    July 31, 2012 at 4:50 pm

    I used to use it but when I switched over to a mac, I found bit torrent to be much better.

  22. Joel Lee
    July 31, 2012 at 4:24 pm

    Never knew about the scheduler feature. It's too bad that I *just* left uTorrent (yesterday) for another: Deluge. We'll see if it's good enough to keep me away from uTorrent for long. ;)

  23. Jay Iyer
    July 31, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    I've used utorrent a lot and I completely agree with what has been written in this post. It is one of the best available torrent clients (possibly the best one even). Although, I am not sure I've used the scheduler / transfer cap functionalities before. I've always used an external scheduler to start/stop utorrent and my network when I used to be on a bandwidth/download cap every month. Can someone please explain if this is a new feature in a latest version? (to be honest, I have not used utorrent for quite a long time - about a year or more now).

  24. Salman Abdullah
    July 31, 2012 at 2:27 pm

    You didn't explain an advance preferences then how to become the master of preferences

    • Diva O'Doom
      August 13, 2012 at 8:56 pm

      I agree. This is a pretty vanilla article. None of the settings are explained. "Set as you see fit" is not helpful at all. There are many other tutorials with much better information than this one. YouTube has videos with much more thorough instructions.

  25. Darryl Park
    July 31, 2012 at 2:17 pm

    I have a D-Link DNS-323 NAS and it has a built in torrent client. If I take the same torrent file and plug it into utorrent or transmission on my mac, then also that torrent file on the DNS-323, I get huge throughput on the DNS-323. Most times it pushes 1Mb/sec where the torrent apps on the mac rarely come close to half that. maybe it's a settings thing. I'll have to test out your suggestions in the article but needless to say, I always use the DNS-323 to grab torrents.

  26. Phill Johnson
    July 31, 2012 at 2:02 pm

    I think that Utorrent should get some new updates to make it more good looking and awesomer

  27. Phill Johnson
    July 31, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    Utorrrent is the most popular of the bit torrent softwares.

  28. Igor Rizvi?
    July 31, 2012 at 11:27 am

    great thx..

  29. Dylan
    July 31, 2012 at 10:10 am

    Thanks craig :)

  30. Vanja Gorgiev
    July 31, 2012 at 9:16 am

    i'm using bittorrent, but there is not really a difference, except for the color

  31. Fabian_F_F
    July 31, 2012 at 8:01 am

    I'm using Transmission since I bought a Mac. We ned a guide for this too.

    • Anonymous
      November 28, 2012 at 12:50 pm

      Me too.

  32. Va Du
    July 31, 2012 at 6:49 am

    Still the best and I don't even use the latest version. That's saying something. The scheduler is great when I want to use it during sleep since I can't go max speed during the day when everyone else in my house uses it.

  33. Muhammad Ahmad
    July 31, 2012 at 6:18 am

    I always download dubbed movies through u torrent. I like torrent very much.

  34. Nitai Leffler
    July 31, 2012 at 5:56 am

    Tnaks! really helped me

  35. rshewmaker
    July 31, 2012 at 4:44 am

    Utorrent has been my program of choice for a few years now. I know this isn't probably the place for a question but... I can't figure why download links only work with chrome and not IE 9 any longer. I know some setting (cookies maybe) in the one of the browsers has changed. I just don't know which it is. Any feedback would be great.

  36. Phúc Ng?c
    July 31, 2012 at 4:31 am

    I already used this for a long time. These tweaks are a must to know :D

  37. Nguyen Tran
    July 31, 2012 at 4:19 am

    Good works, It's was wonderful if there is a list of good torrent tracker page. Thanks!

  38. Saiwal
    July 31, 2012 at 4:12 am

    A lot of my friends don't know how to use torrents. Can you refer me to some easy to understand articles for them. i would really appreciate that.

  39. denny Gl
    July 31, 2012 at 3:50 am

    ya u torrent is my uses less system resources.thanks for the article