PeerBlock is one of the oldest ways to hide and block malicious IP addresses but isn’t as effective and responsive as it is supposed to be. If you love torrenting and finding the PeerBlock alternative, then this guide will help you for sure.
PeerBlock is an open-source platform to use, but it’s limited in the list in the free version. You can get more IP lists in paid versions. However, PeerBlock isn’t effective because it will block other non-malicious IPs as well. Also, their inability to encrypt the data, hide the actual IP address, and function across multi-platforms makes them not a reliable option to use.
All these reasons urge users to look for reliable PeerBlock alternatives. The best PeerBlock alternatives are the ones that ensure a fast and hassle-free torrenting experience but also maintain online security. The best PeerBlock alternative that provides a secure torrenting and online browsing experience is a VPN.
Why Use a VPN Over a PeerBlock?
A VPN is a better and a reliable option to use instead of a PeerBlock. Using a VPN will provide complete digital anonymity and privacy over the web. A VPN is the best privacy tool to use for torrenting because:
- A VPN comes with an extensive server network that ensures fast downloading speed. Moreover, unlike a PeerBlock, a VPN has specialized P2P servers that guarantee a fast and secure torrenting experience.
- Another bright side of a VPN is it hides your actual IP address and replaces it with the one assigned by the VPN server. Your ISP or the government surveillance agencies will only see the VPN’s IP address and not yours.
- A VPN hides the contents you are viewing from your ISP. Your ISP has no idea about your online activities and thus fails to throttle your connection.
- A VPN encrypts your data traffic into deep encrypted packets and makes it scrambled and unreadable form that’s impossible to detect. Thus, no one can know what you are downloading from the web.
- A PeerBlock only operates on the Windows platform, but this is not the case with a VPN. You can use a VPN on all major operating systems and devices without any connectivity issues.
Torrenting uses P2P connections where a large amount of data is transferred with the device and the P2P network. The exchange of data exposes your device to various external threats. At times, hackers invade your network and infiltrate it with malware or adware. Thus for all these reasons, including the ones mentioned above, you should use a VPN over PeerBlock.
1. Use VPN For Torrenting
A VPN is a much better option for downloading torrents instead of a PeerBlock. But you still need to make sure that you have chosen the right VPN provider. Always select a VPN that supports P2P traffic and comes with some torrent-focused features.
After a lot of research, I finally came up with the four best VPNs as PeerBlock alternatives. Below is a brief review of the best VPNs.
1. NordVPN: 1. NordVPN: 30-day refund policy, you can enjoy Netflix, Torrenting, and gaming simultaneously. 4800+ servers around the world. Works with Mac, Android, Win, and iPhone. www.nordvpn.com
2. Surfshark: works with Netflix, fastest torrenting, great gaming with low ping. 3200+ servers around the world, compatible with devices. 30-day Free trial www.surfshark.com
3. ProtonVPN: provide fastest servers, and access to US Netflix and also allow torrenting. You can have a great gaming experience. Compatible with all devices. www.protonvpn.com
2. CyberGhost VPN
CyberGhost VPN is another best VPN for torrenting because of its extensive server network that’s spread in 91 countries. It has specialized P2P servers in the Select Server option, which guarantees faster downloads.
When you connect to the CyberGhost VPN torrent server, you can access even the torrenting sites that your ISP blocks. There are no data caps or bandwidth limits which means that you can download unlimited files.
Also, with CyberGhost VPN, you don’t have to worry about ISP tracking. It uses AES-256 bit encryption, WireGuard, OpenVPN protocols, and DNS and Torrents IP leak protection. Moreover, it also has a kill switch, split tunneling, NoSpy servers that further protect ISP or other prying eyes.
NordVPN is the most secure and reliable VPN for torrenting because of its speed, user-friendly interface, and impressive torrent-friendly features. The VPN offers unlimited bandwidth and prevents bandwidth throttling across all servers.
The Panama-based VPN consists of more than 4000 P2P-optimized servers for torrenting, all of which deliver fast connection speed. As a PeerBlock alternative, NordVPN uses military-grade AES-256 bit encryption along with perfect forward secrecy. It offers super-fast speeds since it starts using NordLynx technology that’s based on the WireGuard protocol. Thus, speeds won’t be an issue while you download torrents using NordVPN.
Moreover, NordVPN also comes with a variety of privacy-focused features that ensures a safe torrenting experience. This includes split tunneling, a dedicated IP address, a kill switch, DNS, and IP leak protection.
4. Surfshark VPN
Surfshark is a relatively new VPN that belongs to a privacy-friendly jurisdiction of the British Virgin Island. The VPN comes with unlimited bandwidth that allows unlimited torrenting. It also has several torrent-friendly features like robust encryption, kill switch protection, and P2P-optimized servers.
The service provider also offers 18 P2P-optimized servers and automatically connects you to the nearest P2P servers, making it an excellent choice for torrenting. It provides a whitelister or split tunneling feature that promises fast downloading speed and adds a layer of protection while you download torrents.
Users won’t have any speed issues while using Surfshark VPN because it uses the WireGuard protocol specially designed to boost speed. Another bright side of Surfshark VPN is it works well with all popular torrent clients such as BitTorrent and uTorrent and ensures a hassle-free torrenting experience.
ExpressVPN has the fastest server network and is yet another best option to use as a PeerBlock alternative. ExpressVPN has recently added a new Lightway protocol that makes it a perfect choice for torrenting. This protocol enables users to browse, download, and stream the internet quickly as possible. It uses AES-256-GCM, ChaCha/Poly1305, and lightweight cryptographic libraries that automatically change the protocols, speed up the connection, and boost security levels.
The VPN offers 160+ P2P-optimized servers for downloading torrents from all popular torrent clients. ExpressVPN app also has a speed test option that is helpful to use during torrenting. It first enables you to ‘Run’ a speed test before you connect to a server. In this way, you can choose a server with fast speed for torrenting. Moreover, the smart location feature ranks the server according to its download speed, distance, and latency, making your torrenting experience worth amazing.
Other PeerBlock Alternatives
Besides VPNs, there are other PeerBlock alternatives too. Here we’ve discussed four of the best options that work like PeerBlock. Let’s have a look.
Developed by Phoenix Labs, PeerGuardian is a free, open-source privacy firewall alternative to PeerBlock. The software has an easy-to-use interface and has the following perks to offer to users:
- Allows users to block or enable peers: Unlike PeerBlock, PeerGuardian takes a more rational approach to block IP addresses. Instead of blindly blocking harmless IP addresses, PeerGuardian gives users the liberty to go through their IP address lists and choose what list to allow and what to restrict. Furthermore, users can also opt to block or allow an IP address either permanently or temporarily.
- Users can customize their IP blacklist: Another feature that makes PeerGuardian an instant hit with torrenters is to customize their IP blocklists. They can add IP ranges they’d like to avoid and remove specific addresses already present in the blocklist.
Although PeerGuardian allows users to exercise unprecedented control over their P2P activities, it has some drawbacks. The biggest one being the lack of supported platforms, which is currently limited to Linux only and a dormant Windows version.
Another open-source and free application on our list is none other than the popular SimpleWall, which distinguishes itself by offering the following features:
- It’s extremely easy to use and understand: Simply put, what makes SimpleWall stand out from the rest of the herd is the high configurability it offers to users. Instead of spending hours fiddling with the software settings, users need to click on the ‘Enable Filtering’ button, and SimpleWall will automatically block all peers with malicious links.
- Allows users to configure settings according to their needs: Similarly, to PeerGuardian, SimpleWall offers users the option to customize what peers to restrict and allow for a particular application or the entire system.
In addition to the features mentioned above, SimpleWall takes a more rounded approach to security and offers other privacy-centric specs, including certain debugging features, along with the fact that it disables any existing spy trackers present. Like PeerGuardian, SimpleWall has limited accessibility for Windows only.
The third pick on our list is another free and open-source application that blocks specific IP addresses and ranges called IPlist. Some key features of this application include:
- Allows users to create specific blacklists: The most significant aspect of IPlist is the spectacular amount of control it provides to the users. Moreover, the security-focused application works in line with IPTables, which allows torrent users to create their IP blacklists and whitelists in addition to the blocklists already present.
- The app is regularly updated: Unlike most popular alternatives to PeerBlock, such as PeerGuardian, IPlist has received multiple updates and bug- removals since its launch in 2008.
However, there are some drawbacks to using IPlist over other PeerBlock alternatives. The biggest drawback is that IPlist is only compatible with Linux and has an interface that requires users to overcome a learning curve.
Also, IPlist takes some time to get the hang-off, but the pay-off is worth it since bonus features include port forwarding, IP blocks, detailed logs, amongst many others.
9. BeeThink IP Blocker
The next mention on our list is the versatile BeeThink IP Blocker, which has the following benefits to offer to users:
- It surveys the online connection in real-time: Unlike other Peer blocking alternatives, BeeThink IP Blocker monitors each incoming and outgoing packet of data while providing users information about its local address, remote address, etc.
- Offers users the opportunity to lookup IP addresses: Although this isn’t a feature seen in the trial version of the application, BeeThink IP Blocker enables users to search up specific IP addresses and their information.
Moreover, BeeThink IP Blocker allows users to configure their black and whitelists, along with supporting Apache’s .htaccess files. The only drawback to using the BeeThink IP blocker is that it is only compatible with Windows Operating System.
Why Should Torrent Users Look For Alternatives To PeerBlock?
Some reasons as to why users should opt for alternatives are as follows:
- It is impossible to block all malicious IP addresses. It is impossible to avoid every malicious IP address through a manually maintained blocklist, as PeerBlock claims. Moreover, harmful IP addresses are constantly changing, so users can never be sure.
- PeerBlock provides zero encryption. Perhaps the most significant reason why users flock to PeerBlock alternatives includes the lack of encryption it offers. The PeerBlock doesn’t encrypt your online communication, exposing your torrenting habits and support to any interested third party.
- PeerBlock does not conceal your IP address. Contrary to the anonymity PeerBlock claims to offer, it doesn’t hide your IP address, which makes your torrenting activities visible to all torrent peers.
- It significantly slows down your internet connection. Another major issue with PeerBlock is the excruciatingly slow connection speeds it offers. The reason behind this is simple. Since PeerBlock blocks most available peers, download speeds significantly drop (much to the dismay of torrenters).
PeerBlock prevents you from connecting to malicious or undesirable IP addresses; thus, you can use it for downloading torrents. However, in reality, PeerBlock has many flaws that make it not a suitable choice for torrenting. Most importantly, a PeerBlock fails to provide sufficient fast speeds and P2P-optimized servers essential for torrenting. With a PeerBlock, your actual IP address is visible to anyone monitoring your network and doesn’t encrypt the data traffic.
All this increases the need for PeerBlock alternatives. There are several PeerBlock alternatives available that prevent ISP surveillance and ensure a safe torrenting experience. But, among all, using a VPN is the best and the safest option to use. It hides your IP address, encrypts your data, and offers P2P-optimized servers for a hassle-free torrenting experience.