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btmakemetafile.bittornado(1) General Commands Manual btmakemetafile.bittornado(1)


btmakemetafile — generates torrent meta-info files for use with bittorrent


btmakemetafile trackerURL file|directory [file|directory ...] [--piece_size_pow2 num] [--comment comment] [--target file] [--filesystem_encoding encoding] [--httpseeds seedURLlist] [--announce_list announceURLlist]


This manual page documents briefly the btmakemetafile command.

This manual page was written for the Debian distribution because the original program does not have a manual page.

btmakemetafile is a program that is used to generate the torrent info files that are distributed to bittorrent clients (usually over http) to inform them of where the designated tracker for the torrent is located, and to enable them to verify the file's contents.

btmakemetafile requires two arguments. The first is the trackerURL which is the "announce" address of a tracker (ex., the second is the file or directory of files that are to be included in to torrent.


These programs follow the usual GNU command line syntax, with long options starting with two dashes (`--'). A summary of options is included below.

set the piece size to this power of 2 (0 = automatic) (defaults to 0)
optional human-readable comment to put in the torrent file (defaults to '')
optional target file for the torrent (defaults to '')
an optional encoding specification for the filesystem (set automatically in recent Python versions) (defaults to '')
a list of http seed URLs. These alternate URLs will be used to seed the file if there are no other seeds available. The format of seedURLlist is as follows:
URL[|URL ...]
(defaults to '')
a list of announce URLs. This is an optional list of redundant/backup tracker URLs. The format of announceURLlist is as follows:
URL[,URL ...][|URL[,URL ...] ...]
where the URLs separated by commas are tried randomly, then the groups of URLs separated by pipes are tried in sequential order. If this option is omitted, it is assumed you don't want an announce_list field in the metafile. If announce_list is given, clients which support it will ignore the trackerURL value. (defaults to '')


These examples show how to use the --announce_list option in a few scenarios.

Try the three trackers (1-3) in sequential order:

btmakemetafile trackerURL file --announce_list|| 

Try the three trackers (1-3) in a randomly selected order:

btmakemetafile trackerURL file --announce_list,, 

Try the main tracker (1) first, then try the two backups (2 and 3) randomly:

btmakemetafile trackerURL file --announce_list|, 


btcompletedir(1), btcompletedirgui(1), btmaketorrentgui(1), btshowmetainfo(1), bittorrent-downloader(1).


This manual page was written by Cameron Dale <> (based on the original man pages written by Micah Anderson <>) for the Debian system (but may be used by others). Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU General Public License, Version 2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation.

On Debian systems, the complete text of the GNU General Public License can be found in /usr/share/common-licenses/GPL.