Is Liberty Cablevision throttling Bit Torrent?

Internet TubesToday I came across a test to see whether an Internet Service Provider (ISP) was throttling Bit Torrent traffic. I thought it would be interesting to test my own ISP and then share this new resource to see if others in Puerto Rico could test their own ISP.

Note: If the preceding paragraph makes no sense to you, if it sounds like techno-babble or gobbly-gook, then I give you my permission to skip this blog post and move onto the next one.

Okay, I assume that if you're still here, then I assume you're already downloading using the Bit Torrent technology. Let's first give some background. Over the past year or so, Internet advocates started learning about efforts by the ISP community to limit or block traffic related to Bit Torrent downloads. The logic given to justify these efforts was that the traffic demands of Bit Torrent downloaders was overwhelming networks and starting to impact ordinary ISP users.

Of course, most Internet aficionados cried foul. The ISP's however, folded these efforts and their defense into the whole debate about network neutrality. What ISP's want and network neutrality is attempting to fight is that some traffic, like downloads and videos, are so network intensive, that the providers of that content should pay more to use the network, as opposed to a "normal" site. Network neutrality claims that all traffic is equal, regardless of the demands it places on the network.

Test Results

So after finally getting through to the test server, I was able to successfully test my ISP, Liberty Cablevision. A quick note on the test site. The site is very, very busy. So be patient. Well, I'm sad to say, but according to my results, it appears that Liberty is constraining Bit Torrent traffic. While the test indicated that Liberty was not impacting the seeding process, it did appear that they were limiting the download rate on the standard Bit Torrent port. Here is a cut and past from the test results:

Is TCP traffic on a well-known BitTorrent port (6881) throttled?

* Your ISP possibly rate limits all downloads at port 6881. In our test, a TCP download on a BitTorrent port achieved at least 1 Kbps while a TCP download on a non-BitTorrent port achieved at least 15 Kbps.

Note that it is hard to detect rate limiting and that there are many explanations why a transfer can observe lower throughput than another transfer. We run the BitTorrent and TCP transfer back-to-back and at least two times to add more confidence to our measurements.

What I'd like to ask is if there are any Dondequiera readers out there who are familiar with Bit Torrent and use another ISP besides Liberty, could you please test your ISP and post the results in the comments? If we can get results from all of the ISPs, then we'll have a better idea of where local ISPs stand in respect to network neutrality. Thanks in advance in helping defend Internet freedom.

7 comments:

Anónimo

18 de diciembre de 2008, 02:57
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dijo...

actually I was runnign trough the internet checking if someone thought the same about liberty cable vision and I checked in 5 different houses and yes the only Isp that is currently throttling Bittorrent Protocol is Liberty, I work at a music studio and we have One Link PR in the studio and it works perfectly

DCCJ

4 de marzo de 2009, 21:24
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dijo...

It's seems like it. Liberty is limiting my bittorrent conections. I have to enable forced encryption on utorrent to be able to download... It's very sad...

Anónimo

16 de marzo de 2009, 23:04
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dijo...

I've been having trouble with Bit-Torrent for about 2 month now. They are blocking Bit-Torrent. I called to complain knowing they wouldn't admit it or help. There's a good site made for testing if your ISP is blocking Bit-Torrent. http://broadband.mpi-sws.org/transparency/bttest.php
I have done constant testing and every time no Bit-Torrent traffic can be exchanged through Liberty Cable ISP. It seems they are not feeding reset packages like Comcast was doing before the FCC got on their case and made them stop the practice but they are blocking the protocol in some other way.

Anónimo

27 de junio de 2009, 12:40
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dijo...

Well... I imagined something like this could happen but now it seems to be confirmed. I called my internet provider, Liberty telephone assistance, and explained that no torrent program wants to run torrents even with the static IP, the port forwarded and the port reading as "OK" in the program. The operator commented that this issue was familiar to her, since it was not the first time she received a similar complaint. The only thing she did was "write a letter" to the administrators and tell me they are going to be contacting me soon. In that same moment I decided to do some research (a little bit late for that heh?) and found this excellent blog. So, yeah... Liberty sucks. The best thing the internet has is torrents and now they've found a way to limit this medium to us. Outrageous.

Anónimo

2 de julio de 2009, 19:42
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dijo...

OMFG! Esos cabrones de Liberty! "Liberty"? There is no liberty if u cant download something you want! Im done with Liberty!, Now im going to try to change my ISP with Dmax, or One Link, they want security, what they will win is the fury of their clients, and begin loosing them...

Anónimo

17 de julio de 2009, 11:32
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dijo...

Yes, Liberty throttles BitTorrent I currently have them and I haven't found any of the "workarounds" to work for me. They advertise you can download videos and music. You can. With anything except BitTorrent.

I used to have DMAX. No problems with BitTorrent or any other P2P. Only downside is DMAX's servers fail way too often. Sometimes for days and they don't refund the missing time if you complain.

I tried Centennial's new service for the 15 days they give you to decide if you wanna stay with them. In one word: Horrible. They don't exactly throttle. As soon as the modem detects you're downloading with BitTorrent or any other P2P, the modem limits your speeds to under 10kb/s. The only way to fix this is by shutting down the modem for about 30 seconds and resuming. When you ask them, they say they do this "to avoid abuse".
Yeah...why pay for a 3mbit connection if all I'm gonna do is read stuff...If that's all I'm gonna do I'd rather get the cheaper connection...

Anónimo

31 de julio de 2009, 17:04
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dijo...

Liberty tambien esta afectando accesso a juegos como aion tower of eternity. Hice una prueba con el internet de sprint y entra sin ningun problema y con liberty despues de que entras con el personaje no puedes hacer nada por que tiene un delay de varios minutos de darle al boton and tomar una accion. Por ahora es una perdida de dinero comprar el juego si no lo vas a poder usar por culpa de liberty.