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Thread: rsync to download Knoppix-4.0 DVD?

  1. #1
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    rsync to download Knoppix-4.0 DVD?

    I have found numerous instances of mirrors with the full 3.1 GB EN download of Knoppix-4.0, but the HTTP and FTP downloads have all failed somewhere around 2.0 GB. I have read that many HTTP/FTP servers won't deal with files of more than 2 GB - hence the proliferation of sites that offer the full iso split into multiple files. Before I go that route, I keep seeing rsync as a possibility, and but I have never used this. It *is* installed on my SuSE 9.3 - I just don't know how to use it. After reading the man page and various on line references, I still can't make it do anything useful. Feeling like I have fulfilled my obligation to RTFM before posting, I am now posting!

    Could someone post back the EXACT syntax of the command required to use rsync to download the full iso from any of the numerous mirrors that have it? Speak slowly and as if to a small child! Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Why are you resisting using BitTorrent? There's currently more seeders than downloaders. People are getting great download speeds, right now as I write this I see many people getting well over my maximum download bandwidth, with one user getting 400 KB/sec. Plus BitTorrent downloads are always good (it does it's own verification while downloading and replaces any bad segment it might get) while mirror downloads, when they complete, are frequently corrupt.

    There is more information about BitTorrent in the Downloading FAQ.

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    I am resisting BitTorrent for two reasons - first, most mirrors offer FTP, HTTP and RSYNC. I would like to use one of these methods as they are obviously preferred mechanisms. I have 6 Mbps DSL - I can frequently far exceed the 400 KB you mention below. Secondly however, BitTorrent is file sharing software, which means that my machine will end up serving data to others. That sucks Internet bandwidth and CPU, and I am a real fan of tightly controlling what happens on my machine in order to maximize performance. Finally of course, there is the FUD factor - file sharing software in the Windows world is a NOTORIOUS source of viruses, worms etc. I am not dipping my toes in that water unless I really need to. I would rather order the Knoppix DVD from a store than take that risk... yes, I know that Linux is pretty safe in this regard, but not doing it at all is even safer!

    rsync syntax anybody? With all those mirrors offering it, I am sure folks know how to use it!!

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    "NOTORIOUS source of viruses, worms etc"


    you poor misquided soul

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by mac57
    I am resisting BitTorrent for two reasons - first, most mirrors offer FTP, HTTP and RSYNC. I would like to use one of these methods as they are obviously preferred mechanisms. I have 6 Mbps DSL - I can frequently far exceed the 400 KB you mention below. Secondly however, BitTorrent is file sharing software, which means that my machine will end up serving data to others. That sucks Internet bandwidth and CPU, and I am a real fan of tightly controlling what happens on my machine in order to maximize performance. Finally of course, there is the FUD factor -
    You really don't know what you are talking about. Of course FTP servers offer FTP downloads, but that doesn't make FTP the obviously prefered mechanism. BitTorrent is by far the most use protocol on the Internet, by volume, behind only TCP/IP (obviously of which it is a part of). There have been nearly 33 terabytes of Knoppix 4.0 DVD transfered in the last 9 days since it's release. Almost 11,000 completed good downloads by BitTorrent. BitTorrent is the prefered mechanism.

    You may have great download capacity, but using it may be harder. I never got good download speeds from the mirrors, often was told that it would take a day or more to download a CD ISO. I could usually find one that would take only about 6 hours, but never one that would fill my modest DSL bandwidth. If things are any better now then I expect it is likly because of the number of users that have moved to BitTorrent and are not burdening the mirrors, not because of any capacity increase at the mirrors. But it hardly matters if your mirror download is corrupt (about 1/2 of mine were).

    Yes, BitTorrent is sharing, you download and share your upload capacity at the same time. But it only shares the torrent or torrents that you download. There is no risk at all that other files will be transfered out. Yes, there are people out there using BitTorrent to transfer files that violate copyright, this is done with lots of different proptcols, including FTP servers too, so by your standards you should avoid using FTP. The real point is that Knoppix distribution by BitTorrent is exactly the kind of legal distribution that BitTorrent is designed for. I advocate it's legal use, not refuse or fear using it because some people have used it improperly. By your logic it would seem the enitre Internet should be shut down, but I perfer to enpower the legal user and go after the criminals rather than just not use a good tool because someone I don't like is using it too.

    I'm not quite sure I understand your "serving data to others sucks bandwidth and CPU" issue, particularly when you want others to help you. Using your upload capacity really doesn't have a mesaurable impact on your downloading. You only have to upload while you are downloading. Many of us do run BitTorrent to seed and help pass along the file. I've been running it since the 4.0 DVD came out (I've seeded many other Knoppix ISOs in the past). I do hit the "pause button" on the BitTorrent client when I play on-line games, to keep my ping time fast and avoid lag. But I run it other times, including now, and see no impact on my normal web use at all. If people didn't do this then the entire system would break down since you download much faster than you upload. But fortunately many of us are willing to do our part to help Open Source software in ways we can.

    The FUD is just supported by ignorance and clears up when you take the time to think. Sure, any file sharing machanism could be used to spread a virus, but the "victim" has to choose to download the virus. I don't doubt that there are many people trying to offer Torrents that claim to be windows software or pornography that actually do contain viruses. But you can't get infected by running BitTorrent unless you choose to actually download these files and even then unless you run them to trigger the virus. The Knoppix torrents are from the officiial source and contain the same files offered on the mirrors. No seeder can insert any virus in the distribution, because the original torrent file that you download from a trusted source contains checksum information for every small slice that you download as well as the entire large files. And modified part would be caught and replaced by a part from another seeder. There are no viruses spreading by BitTprrent from good torrents from trusted sources.

    A lot of that FUD, by the way, is spread by Microsoft, a group that finally realized that here is yet another part of the internet that they don't dominate, and are now coming out with their own file downloading service. So of course they are doing what they always do to harm everyone else. It must really irk them to see Linux distributed by BitTorrent.

    There are some peole offering questionable clients, and the client package that some victims download (from an FTP source) do contain spyware, adware, and worse. BUt the Official client, the one you are directed to by the Get Knoppix link near the top of this page, the one that actually uses the BitTorrent name, is well known to be clean. The sources are available and people have recompiled those sources and matched them to the distributed EXEs and inspected them closely. You would be smarter to fear what might lurk on the Knoppix DVD than to distrust the BitTorrent client itself.

    So if you answer is "I didn't use it because I feared it", maybe my post helped answer your doubts and relieve your fears. If, as seemed to come across, your real response is that you just want the free download and you're willing to spite yourself and keep fighting with FTP even though it isn't working for you in order to not share any of your idle upload capacity with others, and that helping anyone else get a copy while you get yours is an abomination, then I don't think we can do much to help you.

  6. #6
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    Folks, lets not have a flame war here. BitTorrent isn't the only download mechanism on the planet - the last post makes it sound like my democratic, linux-spirited obligation to use BitTorrent to help others. I simply want to download the DVD, like thousands of others souls I am sure. I shouldn't have to install new software and then start serving my downloads in order to do that.

    Linux is all about free choice, and I am exercising just one such choice. The great strength of all of the linux distros I have used is the friendly and helpful nature of their user groups. I am not some mean spirited drudge who would begrudge others my time and help. I post as many solutions and helpful hints as requests for help. I take the linux approach very seriously - freedom of choice, helping others and so on.

    rsync *is* a supported method (one of several, granted, but certainly a supported method) and one offered by many mirrors. Is no one willing to extend a helping hand, instead of berating me for not being public spirited enough?

  7. #7
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    Here are the exact commands I used to download the DVD iso file from ftp.gwdg.de using rsync. From a linux prompt (I was running Cygwin under WinXP), enter

    rsync rsync://ftp.gwdg.de/pub/linux/knoppix/dvd/

    This produces a directory listing in the form of ls -l. From the listing select the file to download. I wanted the English DVD iso file, so I used

    rsync rsync://ftp.gwdg.de/pub/linux/knoppix/dvd/KNOPPIX_V4.0DVD-2005-08-16-EN.iso ~/KNOPPIX/

    The only two spaces in this line are after the first 'rsync' and before the '~'. This started the download into a subdirectory /KNOPPIX/. rsync gave no status updates, only a final statement of the size of file transmitted. However, I could use Windows Explorer to check on the file status and saw that it was getting larger all the time. I also used Windows performance monitor to graph the "bytes received/sec" and saw that the file was delivered in clumps.

    If you don't use ftp.gwdg.de, be sure to check the file size in the listing from your selected site. It should be 3324309504 bytes. I downloaded a file with the same name from another mirror site, and when I burned it, it turned out to be Mandrake Linux!

    The download took about 17 hours using cable internet connection. I then burned a DVD and it works fine.
    Good luck

  8. #8
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    Is no one willing to extend a helping hand, instead of berating me for not being public spirited enough?
    Rsync is a great protocol but as you can see from the 1 response to over 225 views, rsync is not popular. My preference is Azureus bittorrent client, followed by wget for ftp/http, and then rsync. The last time I did a rsync for a ISO is easily 6 months if not 9 months ago. I didn't know the syntax then (I copy & pasted a line I found via google) and I don't know it now. Sorry.

  9. #9
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    First of all, my sincere thanks to plstant for the assistance provided. I will try this.

    I agree with UnderScore that rsync is not very popular, hence my request for help in using it. I am not sure why so many Knoppix mirrors are now offering it, but they are - perhaps it will become more popular in the future!

    Thanks again all.

  10. #10
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    Finally of course, there is the FUD factor - file sharing software in the Windows world is a NOTORIOUS source of viruses, worms etc. I am not dipping my toes in that water unless I really need to.
    Just to bring up an issue that has not been mentioned previously, but seems to be of concern here. There have been numerous instances of vulnerabilities in RSYNC. It has been troublesome in the past and probably continues to be an issue. I was first enlightened and made aware of that when a bank of servers was compromised through RSYNC. I was not involved in the cleanup, but I am certain that RSYNC was the way in. I have used RCP and RSYNC in the past and have put them aside since it is rather slow and tedious and really did not impress me. It was used primarily to back up or sync files between servers then and I believe that is one of the primary uses for it today. I'm sure that you can run a Google and find out more about how it works and how to work it. I'm certainly no expert on using RSYNC, so I will not attempt to give you any help there, since it appears that issue has been addressed here before. It might be interesting to play with, but I would avoid it for serious downloads of significant size. I use FTP and BitTorrent with great success. I am not aware of any instances where a system was compromised by the BitTorrent software or directly by it's use. I will make that statement only for the Official BitTorrent and not for any of the similar programs that might be available. It is usually the downloaded content that would put someone at risk, just like the pirated content of the P2P file sharing programs that once were so popular at one time. The software packages themselves were often loaded with malicious garbage. They made me loads of money just cleaning up infested systems for people that know better now. Before you get serious about RSYNC check out any security vulnerabilities if that is a concern of yours.

    I will strongly agree with Harry Kuhman to the extent that BitTorrent is a good choice. In my experience, it has not yet failed to deliver a valid and correct file. I hate to download something twice, especially something of DVD size. I have the DVD Torrent seeding from two locations intermittently. It has little impact on my regular use of my connections, and they are about half of the 6Mbps connection that you have. The BitTorrent program downloaded the files for me in about 4 or 5 hours the FIRST time I tried it. It was in the very beginning of the Torrent and Seeders were outnumbered by leechers at least 8 to 1. Most others that try Bit Torrent have good results. I use FTP quite often also, but have had rather inconsistent results with these large files, although I have not experienced the failures that you have. Mine just goes slow on a slow server and can end up taking more time than I would expect.

    Other than that, let us know how you make out with it. It would be interesting just to make a comparison in download methods.

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