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How the heck do I set up a BitTorrent tracker?

2008-05-21 15:08:55

Why is this so friggin hard?

At work we have a couple hundred servers, and we like to install software on them a lot. Like every day. The software images are kind of big, maybe 100-200mb each, and there are maybe 20 different "types" of them. We more or less want to copy all the images out to all 200 machines really fast. Instantly would be great, but we'd settle for a minute or two. We have way expensive switches with 32 gigabit aggregate bandwidth, so 32 file copies could be happening simultaneously at fill 1000 megabit wire speed before we'd run into a wall.

We've had the idea for a long time to run our own little bittorrent universe on our LAN, with a client on every machine and a tracker that would get the master copy of everything.

I've just about pulled all the hair out of my head trying to make this work. has sold out to the Music/TV/Movie industry, and their web site is all useless drivel about how to download movies on the Windows BitTorrent client. There are 17 zillion people who have written their own bittorrent trackers, but those sites are loaded with ads about free pr0n, and it doesn't give me a happy feeling about installing into my production data center. Or my own workstation for that matter.

I've tried downloading the BT source code from sourceforge; that's apparently gone. Darwin/Macports installs of bittorrent bit the giant FAIL with all kinds of fucked up Python dependencies.

It's looking like one of the most popular and probably easiest trackers is a PHP-based one called BT Tracker. But there are 500 flavors of that, and I really don't want to have to set up a web server to set up PHP to set up a tracker for an internal system. Doesn't anybody just make simple, self-contained daemons anymore?

Got any hints?

Amen, brother.

Update: promising. Um, maybe not.