PeerBlock is essentially a firewall based application that relies on IP blacklists and whitelists in determining which P2P computer can connect to yours when downloading torrents.
The main reason torrenters use PeerBlock is that it helps prevent detection from law enforcement or copyright agencies who may also be part of the P2P swarm.
Here’s what you need to know about PeerBlock and its best alternatives out there.
What does PeerBlock do?
As a firewall application, PeerBlock is designed to help you prevent torrent monitoring agencies from seeing your online activity. PeerBlock allows you to create a blacklist of IP addresses belonging to these third-parties interested in monitoring your torrenting activity, thereby keeping you somewhat safe.
Once you’ve downloaded the PeerBlock application, you’ll need to add IP addresses to a blacklist, restricting them from making any incoming or outgoing connections from your computer. You can also set a whitelist of IP addresses from which you want your computer to only accept connection requests.
However, for PeerBlock to be effective, you’ll need to know which IP addresses in the swarm belong to law enforcement or copyright trolls. This is where I-Blocklist.com comes in.
What’s an I-Blocklist?
I-Blocklist is an independent premium service that offers a list of blacklisted IP addresses belonging to government agencies and other suspicious characters.
The main challenge here is that even if you manage to use the I-blocklist service that offers updated blacklists, your ISP will always be able to view your online activity. Copyright trolls will also be able to mask their IP addresses before entering the P2P swarm undetected.
PeerBlock is a great tool for blocking specific IP addresses in the P2P swarm when torrenting. The IP addresses blocked usually belong to copyright trolls or other third parties with vested interests in monitoring your torrenting activities. See the key pros of using PeerBlock below:
- IP Blocking
- Free service
PeerBlock operates on the premise that you can tell all the IP addresses that belong to law enforcement or copyright trolls worldwide and this can be dangerous. There is no way to confirm that you have every single IP address of monitoring agencies worldwide and this is a major flaw. In addition, law enforcement can either mask their IP addresses or compel your ISP to release your identity which can be very costly for you.
See a list of PeerBlock’s main flaws below:
- It doesn’t block all malicious IP addresses
- It can’t mask your IP address or location
- Long blacklists can slow down the torrent download speed
- PeerBlock does not encrypt your torrenting traffic
VPN – #1 PeerBlock alternative
A Virtual Private Network (VPN) protects you by allowing you to connect to the internet via the provider’s servers and encrypting your online activity in the process.
A VPN is a far better solution than PeerBlock mainly because it hides your real IP address and also encrypts your internet traffic, making it nearly impossible for even your ISP or any other third-party to view your online activity.
There are essentially two ways by which your torrenting can be monitored:
- By your ISP via unencrypted traffic
- Via your real IP address that shows up in your P2P swarm
A VPN that allows torrenting via its servers completely eliminates these two risks.
Here are some of the main benefits when using a VPN:
- Data encryption: a reliable VPN provider encrypts your internet traffic, making it extremely difficult for even your ISP to monitor your torrenting or other online activity.
- IP masking: a VPN hides your real IP address and replaces it with one of theirs which is not linked to your ISP.
- Location changing: by masking your IP and replacing it with another, a VPN is able to change your location over and over again.
- Some VPN providers offer a no-logs policy
- A kill switch: this is available with some VPN providers and ensures that whenever the VPN connection drops, all internet activity is stopped.
These are the best VPNs for torrenting anonymously:
- Excellent security
- Largest server list on the market
- Awesome for Netflix
- Good for torrenting
- Very easy to use
- Affordable prices
- Watertight security
- Massive server list
- Great for streaming
- Very good for torrenting
- Very fast
- 24/7 customer support
- Massive server list
- Solid security
- Very user-friendly
- Works with Netflix
- Good for torrenting
- 24/7 live chat support
Other PeerBlock alternatives
People usually have a misconception that PeerBlock can secure their torrenting only if you make critical changes to the blacklist and have a way of knowing every malicious IP address out there. This is wrong!
While a VPN remains undoubtedly the most secure way of securing your torrenting and protecting your privacy, the following are programs like PeerBlock you could consider.
When you compare PeerBlock vs PeerGuard, you’d quickly realize they’re very similar in nearly every way. They both help you block a specific IP blacklist from making connections to your computer. However, PeerBlock still offers more stability and many additional features that make it better overall.
Just like PeerBlock, PeerGuardian does not offer enough protection from prying eyes when downloading torrents especially in terms of location masking and encryption.
Simplewall (for Windows)
Simplewall is a free PeerBlock alternative with a different approach towards torrenting protection. It’s not a firewall application but rather utilizes the built-in filtering platform in Windows.
Simplewall can either be run in blacklist mode where you add applications it must prevent from running, or in whitelist mode where you create an exceptions list of apps that can connect to the internet.
Once you’ve added the apps and enabled filtering, you should be able to blacklist IP addresses and ports easily.
IPlist (for Linux)
IPlist is one of the best alternatives to PeerBlock and is only available for Linux operating systems. It is also an open source program like PeerBlock and allows you to block unwanted IP addresses via Netfilter.
One of the best things about IPlist is that it has received more updates than PeerBlock and even PeerGuardian since it was first launched in 2008.
BeeThink IP Blocker
BeeThink IP Blocker is another great PeerBlock alternative. It is widely respected for its ability to work on both Windows and Server machines. It offers a simple app that’s packed with features like support for multiple IP address list file types including .htaccess.
You can also expect to find features like auto IP update list with this PeerBlock alternative. One of the most important things to note about BeeThink IP Blocker is that it essentially allows you to look up IP ownership from within the app, although this feature comes at an added cost.
1. Is PeerBlock a VPN?
PeerBlock is not a VPN and functions very differently from one. PeerBlock does not encrypt your traffic or mask your IP address which is exactly what VPNs do.
2. What does Peerblock actually do?
PeerBlock acts as a firewall and allows you to block connection requests from malicious IP blacklists. PeerBlock can help internet users avoid detection by blocking connection requests from Ip addresses belonging to monitoring agencies.
3. Does Peerblock work for torrenting?
PeerBlock works for torrenting but it is not as safe as a VPN. PeerBlock would be more effective if you could block every malicious IP address out there and if you could encrypt your traffic.
4. How do I uninstall Peerblock?
To uninstall PeerBlock, you’ll need to:
- Launch the Start Menu
- Open Control Panel
- Depending on your view, double-click Programs and Features or navigate to Programs
- Click the Uninstall button
- Restart your computer