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OK.. something isn't right. I've had this problem before with Linux ISOs. They take me hours and hours to download via Torrent, but if I can find an http link, I download them in no time.
Last night I was downloading 2, 35mb files, and it took almost 10hrs. It appeared I had several seeds, etc, but everything I download via torrent is extremely slow, no matter what client I have. I'm positive its not my Cable connection. I've ran a couple speed tests, and always come back around 4mb, also, when I download via HTTP, my downloads are fine. Just as an example, as a test I just downloaded OpenOffice.org, 120mb via Http, and it took a little over 1.5min. I've went through all my settings, and everything appears set properly(default settings).
So the only thing I can assume, is my Firewall is causing this. I have a Netgear FVS114 wired firewall, that supplies a couple other connections to other devices in the house(they weren't running when I was having the problem). All appears normal..
Distribution: Debian 4.0, Ubuntu 6.10, Ubuntu Server 6.06
Sounds like you need to open some ports. Which client are you running? Most clients have some kind of colour scheme to show whether or not you are connected properly (red, yellow, green)... which colour do you get? If it's not green, you most likely have a closed port.
Check out portforward.com in the meantime, it gives you step by step instructions for most routers out there.
If you're running a software firewall, you'll want to make sure that it's letting the traffic in and out, too.
The other thing is that sometimes ISPs give you a modem (like my DSL modem) that have built-in firewalls... you might need to hack it a bit to turn off the firewall.
I find bittorrent slow as well. It totally depends on the number of seeders. Generally it's not as quick as a normal download, although I did get 400kbps once downloading ubuntu. There were a lot of seeders. Mind you, 10 hours for 35mb is really slow.