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Torrents are simply just one way of getting files spread from one computer to a different. What is nice about the technologies are that rather than the files standing on a web server where there are limited connections, the torrent will break the file into pieces which is shared from all the computers it is onto everyone else. It's more effective than other kinds of downloading since so many connections can be made at the same time which makes it the most efficient method of sharing files on your pc with others.
Even though many people associate torrents with illegal downloads, that it is only a technology. That would be like saying that YouTube is illegal because there are songs that break copyright on YouTube. Torrents are simply technology. What you use it can make it illegal or legal. It's up to you to ensure that you do try to use technologies legally and ethically.
What software opens a torrent file?
You will need a torrent application. Popular ones are BitTorrent, UTorrent, and Azureus. The torrent file will just help you connect with another people with the files that you're looking for so that everyone can be downloading and uploading together.
Things to watch out for when utilizing torrents?
There are two areas that you should stress about. To begin with, don't download illegal content because it can get you into trouble. The majority of what's shared on torrent sites is usually illegal. Make sure the program, music, or anything, is free of charge to distribute. You will find torrents that are legal to make use of.
The second reason is that many torrents are fake torrents. This means that they'll tell you they are one thing but in reality will be a virus or malware. These can destroy your pc. Be sure to read reviews of that specific torrent to ensure that it's a real one and not fake.