This page has been updated on 2009-12-13 for the release of Shareaza v188.8.131.52.
The information on this page should apply to all Shareaza versions provided there are no major changes.
What Is eDonkey2000?
eDonkey2000 (eD2k) is a P2P network that relies on servers to connect users. It runs off multiple, independent, international servers, so it is less likely that it will ever be shut down as the centralized, USA-located Napster servers were. However, in recent years most of the big eD2k servers have been closed down while on the other hand more and more fake servers have appeared. Also, the currently most used client on the network (eMule) added support for its own Kademlia (DHT) based KAD network where users are slowly migrating into. This made the entire network drop significantly in size.
eDonkey2000 (the first client on the eDonkey200 network - which, by the way was named after this client) was created by MetaMachine, a company which closed office on September 22, 2005 and which also created the Overnet network. The network is as of today populated mainly by eMule, mlDonkey and, of course, Shareaza. The old eDonkey2000 client has only a very small user base left as of today (2009).
It is a network with very long queues - usually over 1000 times as long as gnutella or Gnutella2 queues! It also enforces an upload/download ratio - your downloads may be throttled back if your upload is less than 10kB/s. Furthermore, to encourage sharing even more, your queue position may advance faster the more you upload. This does make the network an excellent resource for popular, large files. However, you may have to wait a long time for a download to start. If you are unable to remain online for long periods, or your bandwidth is limited, you may not be able to advance through the queues fast enough to achieve good results.
eDonkey2000 gets server lists from 'server.met' files that are listed everywhere across the web. A default list of servers is included in Shareaza and some of the Default Services point to server.met files around the web to keep the internal server lists of Shareaza up-to-date.
If you are having troubles to connect to the eD2onkey2000 network, see the eDonkeyConnectingGuide Wiki page.