Similar to the web special remote, git-annex can use BitTorrent as a source for files that are added to the git-annex repository.

It supports both .torrent files, and magnet: links. When you run git annex addurl with either of these, it will download the contents of the torrent and add it to the git annex repository.

See using the web as a special remote for usage examples.

git-annex uses aria2 to download torrents.

If git-annex is not built using the haskell torrent library to parse torrents, it also needs the btshowmetainfo program, from either bittornado or the original BitTorrent client.


Currently git-annex only supports downloading content from a torrent; it cannot upload or remove content.

Multi-file torrents are supported; to handle them, git annex addurl will add a directory containing all the files from the torrent.

It's hard to say if a torrent is healthy enough to let a file be downloaded from it, and harder to predict if a torrent will stay healthy. So, git-annex takes a cautious approach and when dropping a file, won't treat this special remote as one of the required copies. It's probably a good idea to configure git-annex to fully distrust this remote, by running git annex untrust bittorrent

This feature is available only from version 5.20141219.