Download of the day: qBittorrent

When you want it all, and you want it now

Some torrent apps offer every conceivable function. Others keep things as simple as possible. qBittorrent sits right in the middle, aiming to “meet the needs of most users while using as little CPU and memory as possible”.

That means while it isn’t too frightening it still packs in a lot of features. It boasts an integrated torrent search engine, media player, encryption, prioritisation of torrents and the files within those torrents, IP filtering and torrent creation, and it’s the closest open source, crapware-free equivalent to uTorrent.

If you’re looking for a well behaved torrent client that covers the essentials without getting overly complicated, qBittorrent is great.

Why you need it

Despite their dodgy reputation, torrent files are still a very good way of shifting enormous amounts of data around the web, and they’re particularly good for things such as massive disk images or media files - but unfortunately some of the torrent apps out there aren’t great.

qBittorrent is: it’s open source, which means it's completely free, devoid of ads, and can be developed and extended by anyone with something to add. If you’ve found other torrent apps a little too keen on blasting you with ads or changing things on your PC, you’ll find the difference refreshing.

Download here: qBittorrent

The best free torrent client 2016

Torrent files turn your computer into part of a swarm where data is shared as it's downloaded, so while you're downloading something from other people you're also helping others download the bits you've already got. The result is a very reliable and often very fast way to get your hands on huge files. To use torrent files, you need a client; here are our favorites.

For more details, see our guide to the best free torrent clients

1. qBittorrent

The perfect balance of features, speed and simplicity, qBittorrent is the best free torrent client around today.

2. Deluge

A highly customizable torrent client, Deluge can be as lean or powerful as you like.

3. Transmission

Remarkably fast and lightweight - Transmission is our go-to client for use on a Mac. There's a version of Transmission for PC too.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Contributor

Former lion tamer, Girls Aloud backing dancer and habitual liar Gary Marshall (Twitter, Google+) has been writing about tech since 1998, contributing sage advice and odd opinions to .net, MacFormat, Tap! and Official Windows Magazine as well as co-writing stacks of how-to tech books. "My job is to cut through the crap," he says. "And there's a lot of crap."