Quickstart guide

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Download and Installation

There are several ways to obtain MLdonkey :

Note that installing precompiled versions of any software (not only mldonkey) from untrusted sources may pose a security risk for your system.

Install binaries

Ready to run official binaries available for Windows, Linux, Mac OS X.

More Download links.


Directly download mldonkey-3.0.6.static.i386-Linux_glibc-2.7.tar.bz2, then run

 tar jxvf mldonkey-3.0.6.static.i386-Linux_glibc-2.7.tar.bz2

The binary file will be ok in the folder mldonkey-3.0.6.static.i386-Linux_glibc-2.7 You could type

 cd mldonkey-3.0.6.static.i386-Linux_glibc-2.7

and run

 ./mlnet > /dev/null 2>&1 &

Then MLDonkey will be running as a daemon at the background.

Install package

Packages are prepared by distribution maintainers and provide easy way to manage software installation/upgrade. Packages usually differ slightly from official version in order to better integrate with other software and system as a whole (installation paths, user management, daemon launching, etc). General recipe is to search for mldonkey in package database, review selected package information and then install (and configure). You may need to enable additional package repositories to get the latest version.


Use aptitude to install from official debian repository.

aptitude update
apt-cache search mldonkey # aptitude search mldonkey
aptitude install mldonkey-server

Red Hat/Fedora

Use yum to install from EPEL repository.

yum search mldonkey
yum info mldonkey-server
yum install mldonkey-server


echo "net-p2p/mldonkey ~x86" >> /etc/portage/package.keywords
emerge net-p2p/mldonkey

Compile from source

Usually :

tar -jxvf <filename.tar.bz2>
cd mldonkey-<version>
./configure --enable-batch

But have a look at the detailed instructions. Windows users should follow Windows specific instructions. Deal with CompilationProblems.

After successful compilation install self-contained mlnet binary as appropriate (copy to /usr/local/bin or transfer to remote server or whatever).

Installation on NAS boxes and embedded

In order to install mldonkey on a Linux embedded system or Linux based NAS, you can:

more details

Software appliance

A software appliance is a pre-packaged server that allows users to skip manual installation of MLDonkey and its dependencies, and instead deploy a self-contained, ready-to-use system that requires little to no setup.

TurnKey Torrent Server is a free MLDonkey-based file downloading and sharing appliance that combines MLDonkey for P2P file downloading, Samba for Windows-compatible file sharing and ClamAV for anti-virus scanning. It supports handling of all types of file downloads (torrent, e2dk, ftp, web, magnet). Files can be added to the download list using the Torrent Server handler extension for FireFox, or through a simple web interface (P2P-GUI) that allows you to manage the server remotely.

You can get it up and running in minutes on bare metal (e.g., an old computer), a virtual machine (e.g., VMWare, VirtualBox), or in the cloud (Amazon EC2).


Initial Setup and Usage

Once the daemon is running, connect to it as the admin user and change the password:

$ telnet 4000
Connected to
Escape character is '^]'.
Welcome to MLDonkey 2.8.5
Welcome on mldonkey command-line

Use ? for help

MLdonkey command-line:
> auth admin ""
Full access enabled

MLdonkey command-line:
> passwd newpasswd
Password of user admin changed

MLdonkey command-line:

Executing Mldonkey

You need to open a console(telnet... a command prompt) on the PC running mldonkey.

In order to remotely access a Li/Unix device you need a telent/ssh application.

Under Windows OS the best one telnet/ssh application is Putty

Unix's users should use the "ssh" command:

$ ssh username@

"username" is the user on the remote computer where you like to execute mldonkey and is the fictional address of the remote computer on which mldonkey is intended to run. Having a working console you can execute mldonkey with this command:

$ mlnet

this is nice to see things working but closing the ssh console could kill the mldonkey application.

In case you like to execute mlnet in background unattended use this command and then you will be able to freely close the ssh shell:

$ mlnet > /dev/null 2>&1 &

More details about executing the application are collected in HowToStartMLdonkey.

Enabling Access

Having a running application doesn't suffice, you need to enable access from remote location, for example you like to enable your local network to access mldonkey interfaces. By default mldonkey permits only local access from, and you need to add new authorized ranges. Let's log into the PC running mldonkey (look at previous "executing mldonkey") and connect to the core directly from there:

$ telnet 4000 means the local machine and 4000 is the default port for the mldonkey's telnet interface.A new > prompt should appear to confirm your successfully connection. For example, having a local network 192.168.x.x, netmask, in order to permit access to all your local network you can use this command:

> set allowed_ips ""

You can exit the interface using the command "quit"

> quit

More details about this topic: Allowed_ips

Configuration and tuning


Using Web Interface

In order to interact with MLDonkey, configure the application, search for files and manage downloads you have 3 ways

Web interface is accessible using a web browser (Firefox, Explorer, Opera, Safari) and connecting to a "page" which is artificialy created by MLDonkey in order to communicate to the user. Let's assume that you are accessing a remote computer running MLDonkey with IP address Let's open your browser and write in the navigation/address bar. Simply write this address an press enter:


4080 is the default port for MLDonkey's web interface. Web interface works like a normal internet page, simply it permits to communicate with your MLDonkey in the same way you do with the normal emule application. In the upper bar you can see buttons which permits to access to the main MLDonkey's functions:

Opens a page with the current active downloads

Opens a page which permits to search for files

...statistics regarding MLDonkey operation

This is the place you are looking in order to configure MLDonkey, there are options for basic and advanced tuning.

The place for help, documentations, command lists (Longhelp)

There is also a field which can be used the same way than telnet interface. In this field, you can write the telnet commands in order to obtain particular operations. To enter a command, write it to this field and either press enter or click 'Input' button. You can see a list of available commands with 'longhelp' command. Command's output will be visualized in the browser as well.

Searching for files

In a P2P network file searches are based on file name, file type, file size and other file details. In fact the file name usually reflects the nature of the content. For example a file named my_birthday.avi is a movie about someone's birthday. Let's see a real situation: you would like to download a public domain movie, Dr.Jekyll and Mr. Hyde in the original version of the year 1920. I suggest to not put too much words in a search but to put the less number of words which helps to identify the content in a non-ambiguous way.

In this case we can try with the words: Jekyll Hyde 1920.The search phase is visualized in the next sreenshots.

Search results depends from hour/day/luck. Waiting a few seconds before clicking 'Search results' button permits MLDonkey to collect more results.


In the next screenshot you have the search results panel: The second column is the name of the files which has matched your search criteria, the third column is the file size, and the fourth (A) is the estimated number of sources for this file. Every row (different colour) is a different file/result but you can note that the same file could appear in the network with different names. The file is recognized with a numerical way but every user is able to change the name based on his thoughts. Usually this is done in order to give a better description of the content or in order to correct name errors. Looking at the different names is a good way to estimate the quality of the content.



Usually for the same content there are different versions of files. The files are different because different MLDonkey users have converted the same resource in a shareable file format but doing different quality choices, size choices or using different software for conversion.

I suggest to choose from the list the file which has the name most similar to the one you are looking for but with more "sources". I'll add a specific guide in order to do the best choices based on quality and resulting download speed. After choosing the file which fits your needs you have simply to click to the desired filename in order to start that download. Naturally you can start more than one download at one time.

Manage Downloads

Clicking on the Transfers button in the main menu you can access the transfers page. Here you can see the status of downloads, download progress, technical details about downloads and so on.

You can also decide to Pause download, Resume download (continue a paused download), or Cancel downloads. To do this, toggle a selection box to the left side of the file name. The letter in the header shows what operation is selected (Pause, Resume or Cancel). After selecting the operation, click 'Submit changes' button. You can select operation for multiple files at a time.

Clicking on the file row you'll see detailed information about a particular download.


Emule Network Notes

Mldonkey is a filesharing application which grant access to the wide Emule p2p network.The Emule ( aka eDonkey ) network is a big p2p which is sometimes wrongly compared with Bittorrent network.

The main difference between Emule network and Bittorrent network is the search and share paradigm.

In the bittorrent network you need a bittorrent web site in order to search for files and you are bound to the trackers in order to share your files (you have to subscribe). The Emule's search engine is integrated in to the emule's compatible clients and all searches spread immediately far and wide all the network.So you need a unique place, your program interface, in order to look for files which result in a very quick and integrated way to search&donwload files. Emule network permits to simply share a file to all the world by simply moving the file in a shared folder. This is quite immediate and easy way to share things which you think worth spread. In fact common emule's users philosophy is:

If you embrace the Emule(Edonkey) network you'll join the most reach p2p network.Emule offers the widest range of rare, old and new content ranging from videos to music and programs. In detail:

There are few suggestion about correct emule usage:

There is a last performance note: Usually Emule is a bit slower than bittorrent but this depends on the chosen files, it is suggested to launch more donwloads at once in order to optimize banwith usage and to left it run unattended.Choosing the right files to download is an art which is quite funny to learn. Good sharing, Good downloads don't forget to contribuite too.. ;-)

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