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WebTorrent (https://webtorrent.io) is the first torrent client that works in the browser.

It's written completely in JavaScript – the language of the web – and uses WebRTC for true peer-to-peer transport. No browser plugin, extension, or installation is required. The WebTorrent protocol works just like BitTorrent protocol, except it uses WebRTC instead of TCP/uTP as the transport protocol.

Using open web standards, WebTorrent connects website users together to form a distributed, decentralized browser-to-browser network for efficient file transfer.




There's no real incentive for regular BitTorrent clients to spend the development time to add support, because the only ones with something to gain are WebTorrent users.

Existing BitTorrent clients, on the other have something to lose:

* WebTorrent peers are less likely to be connectible (behind NAT etc.)

* WebTorrent peers are more likely to "hit and run" (by navigating away from the page, you stop seeding)

* WebTorrent peers are more likely to favor sequential downloads instead of rarest first (for in-browser playback)

Being incompatible with regular BitTorrent means it does not get any utility from existing swarms (unless regular BitTorrent clients gain widespread support; unlikely).

This means WebTorrent is mostly relevant for content delivery, for use cases a site offloads bandwidth usage onto their uses (like PeerTube, for example), and the site itself always runs a seed.


Mostly true, except with BitTorrent you get tricks for NAT traversal that WebRTC will never have and failure is an option. It works without a STUN/TURN central server, as long as the swarm is sufficiently connected.


Why is this good?




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