Setting Up Torrent Downloading

Aug 10, 2016

This guide will run you through the steps needed to get a BitTorrent client (rtorrent) working with your LEDE/OpenWRT device, allowing you to download and seed files through your device.


As almost all devices come with minimal storage, you will need to set up and mount a USB storage device to handle the file downloads.

SSH to your OpenWRT device

If you are using Windows then start PuTTY and click Session on the left side, select SSH from the options, and then enter in the IP Address of your OpenWRT box into the Host Name field.

Once you’ve done this just click on Open to start up the SSH connection.

If you are connecting via terminal, then just SSH to your OpenWRT device using the following command, where is your OpenWRT device’s IP address.

Install rtorrent

First things first, we need to download the packages needed. So run the following commands:

opkg update
opkg install rtorrent-rpc wget screen

Once completed, we need to install the package that handles the GUI integration with LuCI. You will need to download the latest version of the file from this github page. The latest version at the time of writing this is 0.1.5.

cd /tmp
wget — no-check-certificate
Now we run the following to install it:
opkg install /tmp/luci-app-rtorrent_0.1.5_all.ipk Configuration

Now we need to tweak the config files. Run the following:

vi /root/.rtorrent.rc

Then ensure that your config file looks similar to the following:

encoding_list = UTF-8
system.umask.set = 022
port_range = 23877–23877
port_random = no
check_hash = no
trackers.enable = 1
dht = auto
dht_port = 6881
scgi_port =
encryption = allow_incoming, try_outgoing, enable_retry
directory = /mnt/sda2/downloads/
session = /mnt/sda2/rtorrent/session/
schedule = rss_downloader,300,300,”execute=/usr/lib/lua/rss_downloader.lua”

Change the fields as applicable, for example your directory and session may differ to the directory that you want to use to store your files.

Once you have configured it, we want to make sure that it runs on startup.

To do this we need to create an autostart script. Run the following command:

vi /etc/init.d/rtorrent

And then make sure the file matches the following:

#!/bin/sh /etc/rc.common
start () {
screen -dmS rtorrent rtorrent
stop () {
killall -9 rtorrent
Then run the following commands to enable autostart:
chmod +x /etc/init.d/rtorrent
/etc/init.d/rtorrent enable
/etc/init.d/rtorrent start


By loading your LuCI interface now and logging in, you should notice a new Torrent option in the top navigation bar.

Here you can upload torrents or paste in download links.

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