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Old January 7th, 2016
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Default Connection installer now packaged with gwebcache file. How to port forward

The connection installer is now packaged with a gwebcache file set to Read Only. BS has a built-in default list of almost 40 GWCs where most no longer exist and the few that do are not compatible with BS's out-of-date GWC request approach. Whilst BS might still occasionally dig into its default internal list, this is still better than total failure. Upon testing no errors were recorded either in BS console or program functioning on Win 8, XP or 2k.

Some people are unaware that the BS 5.1 Beta is not a simple plug-in & run program, but instead it requires port forwarding your modem-router before general use. This is not an if or but, it is a MUST do scenario. Firewalled ultrapeers do considerable damage to the network. But this is so easily fixed by port forwarding.

Port forwarding is not some complex scientific mathematical formula! In most cases it is actually quite easy and you will realise this after you have done it.

Whilst Port forwarding is a must for BS 5.1 Beta, it is also beneficial for those running any other version of BearShare. BS's UPnP adopted in later versions does not work for everyone. After port forwarding you will notice the dramatic difference and improvement in BS's performance.

Port Forwarding steps:

1. Set up a Static internal ip address (no this is not your external ip address.) The internal address is what your computer uses when communicating with the router and other computers on the same network (such as your partner or children's computers.) Internal addresses might be something like,, etc. or where the modem-router's address would be the first in line, example: or
Guide on setting up a static internal address:
How to Setup a Static IP Address in XP, Vista, Windows 7, and Game Consoles

2. Forward a port.
The default port to use for gnutella is port 6346 (or 6348), however the BS 5.1 Beta we link to on the forum has its port set to 6348 which would be the easiest for you to use.
Using another port? Some ISP's that filter file-sharing content might monitor or filter these ports. A safer port range to use would be anywhere between a five number port of 20000 and 60000. Examples are ports 23835 or 37140 or 53192, etc.
If you should choose a different port, you will also need to make adjustments within BearShare's settings. ie: BearShare's menu bar, Setup, Connection, and change the port number in the box at bottom of that window to match the one you used for port forwarding. A restart of BS would be required.

Port Forward guide:
Router Port Forwarding Guides
(1) Choose the brand of modem-router you use (click close to the advertisement top-right of screen.) (2) Then choose the model of modem-router you use. (3) Then choose the program you are port forwarding for. Obviously BearShare in this case under the B menu portion so scroll down to that part. Now you can follow the instructions with the variations I have suggested earlier about which port to use.

In regards to setting up a static ip address, if you do not do this before the port forwarding process then the port forward rule will be designated to a particular internal address that rarely matches your computer in future. Here's an example of someone who forgot to set up a static ip address and just recently saw them non-firewalled again 18 months later (that's how long it took.)

I am presently connected to 10 BearShare ultrapeers and 17 BS leafs. Out of the 10 BS ultrapeers only 3 are not firewalled. This simply should not even be allowed to happen. Please try to not be one of the damaging firewalled ultrapeers. How to know if you are not firewalled? Check the Light-like icon top-right of BearShare & it should be green, not yellow or red. If you are an ultrapeer then you should be connected to 3 or more BS leafs and a total of 11 or more leafs. (If an ultrapeer & connected to less than 3 leafs after an hour, you are firewalled!)

Do not forget to set BS to be allowed through your software firewall.

Hostiles: I removed the full-Japanese hostiles from the hostiles installer because the majority of BearShare users need as many hosts as they can to try to connect to. Japan represents one of the very best countries for the best of hosts to connect to. I am still hosting this particular hostiles but not at mediafire. If you are an experienced BS user and insist on the full block then you can find it at 4Shared (need to be registered at & logged into 4Shared to download the designated file.)

BS host-file bugs: I know I've commented about the BS host caching system before. But just to show how poor it is, two BS ultrapeers: one with uptime of 14 days and other with consistent uptime of 24 to 48 hours consecutively, have average uptimes of 38 mins and 80 mins respectively. Resulting in the best BS hosts at the bottom of the host-file. Obviously a severe bug with BS's host-file management.
There's other bugs also, such as multiple host listings, disregard of the hostiles when adding hosts to the host-file, and adding BS ultrapeers also to the non-BS list. The host-file also seems to obtain out-of-date host data with BS ultrapeers that have not existed for years (this might be due to a rogue BS ultrapeer.)
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