The Best BitTorrent Client For Linux

Linux has a few pretty great BitTorrent clients available, but our favourite would have to be the feature-filled, easy-to-use Deluge.

Note: If you don't know much about BitTorrent and want to learn, check out our beginner's guide to BitTorrent.

Deluge

Platform: Windows, Mac, Linux Price: Free

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  • Download torrents (obviously) and manage/prioritise multiple torrents
  • Automatically download torrents through torrent RSS feeds (via a plugin)
  • Rich plugin collection that lets you add only the features you want
  • Monitor and control your torrent downloads remotely, from any computer or mobile device
  • Schedule its bandwidth usage, so it isn't using too much data when you need it
  • Encryption, DHT, UPnP/NAT-PMP, proxy and lots of other advanced features

Deluge aims to be a simple, cross-platform, feature-rich client, and it does it well. The plugin architecture is especially nice, so you can add on just the features you want instead of downloading a "bloated", feature-filled app.

Its GUI is pretty easy-to-use, especially those coming from something like uTorrent on Windows, and its advanced features like remote access and bandwidth scheduling are must-haves for any BitTorrent user.

Deluge is written in Python, which allows it to be cross-platform, but not quite as lightweight as some other clients.

As such, if you're using a particularly old computer, you might not like Deluge since you'll be delegating a lot of RAM to the simple task of downloading files.

In addition, its plugin system can sometimes feel like a crapshoot -- while it's definitely an advantage of the program, you can run into outdated plugins every once in a while, which is very disappointing when you want a certain feature.

If you don't like Deluge, try qBitTorrent. The two are very similar, though differ in a few minor features -- for example, Deluge can run as a daemon and has a nice plugin library, while qBitTorrent has a few more built-in features and is more lightweight.

Essentially, qBitTorrent is probably the most feature-filled client out there, while Deluge is the client you can heavily customise, turning into the perfect client for you. They're both fantastic programs; in fact, they're probably on par with one another -- if we could say they're both the "best", we would.

If you're using KDE and would like a well-integrated torrent client in the style of Deluge and qBitTorrent, KTorrent is a great option.

Transmission is great if you want something super lightweight and simple, but it lacks a lot of the features that more advanced programs offer (even compared to its still-feature-light Mac version).

If all you want is to grab that Linux live CD, Transmission is fine, but if you're a heavier torrenter, you'll probably want to stick with something like Deluge or qBitTorrent.

Vuze is a popular client for very advanced users, offering more features than most other clients out there. The problem is, the app is very slow, bloated and to be honest, you probably don't need a lot of the features it offers unless you're a pretty advanced user.

Though it does have some pretty cool streaming features if you want to watch your videos on your TV.

Lastly, rTorrent is a popular client that differs a lot from the other option in the sense that it has no GUI. Instead, you run it in a terminal and you can remotely monitor it via SSH for an insanely lightweight BitTorrent experience.

It's definitely not your traditional client, but terminal nuts out there will probably love it for its simplicity.

Got a favourite we didn't mention? Tell us about it in the comments.

Lifehacker's App Directory is a new and growing directory of recommendations for the best applications and tools in a number of given categories.


Comments

    uTorrent under wine is perfect :)

      There's a native version of uTorrent for Linux, but it uses web UI (which is good enough for most).

      I'd have to say my favourite torrent program for Linux is Transmission (also wonderful on Mac!). It's very simple and lightweight and has all the feature's you'd expect in your standard torrent program.

    I use Deluge and love it because it allows you to have the daemon component running on a headless server (without having to install the Gnome extensions or GUI at all) and then run the GUI client on multiple machines, all connected to the same daemon. My laptop, desktop and HTPC all are able to add, pause, delete and seed torrents through my home server!

      Now that's a handy feature I didn't realise it had. I think I'll have to check it out again.

      Agreed. I use it that way as well. Basically you can add from multiple sources to the same deluge daemon instance - so long as you can get a TCP connection to the daemon. You can also enable the webui plugin which has 95% of the functionality of the native clients. Combine with RSS feeds support, triggered execution of scripts (i.e. when a torrent finishes downloading) and a few other nifty tricks, Deluge has a lot of automation options...

    I find Transmission suitable, especially with it's daemon, CLI, web-GUI, and native GUI. There's also a project for a portable remote GUI.

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