If you are familiar with the popular Azureus, then Vuze will not be hostile to you. Vuze is in fact a revamp (and rename) of the Azureus bit-torrent client. Plenty of great features are included in this revamped version, including the support of HD content and a social networking component. While the backbone is still a bit-torrent client, the whole approach to sharing/downloading media from the Web has changed. If you have discarded Azureus for a better bit-torrent client in the past, you may want to try out Vuze and reconsider your decision.
Similar to Azureus, Vuze is written in Java and is able to work on any platforms, be it Windows, Mac or Linux. The most notable difference is the improvement in the user interface. The new sleek interface is more like an online catalogue where you can browse and search for movies/music/games/files to download.
In the past (even now for most bit-torrent clients), you’ll have to go to various sites to download the torrents before you can use your bit-torrent software to download the content. Vuze allows you to search within the software and download the torrents directly when you double click on the search results. By default, Vuze only search the torrents within its Vuze network, but you can easily add other popular torrent sites to increase the search results.
Vuze hosts an impressive library of HD content in its Vuze HD network. You can browse the content according to the categories and check out the 30s preview before you decide if you want to download it. It is also community based where you can rate and comment on the movies, or even share it with your friends.
Interestingly, Vuze has included a social networking module where you can add friends and share your favorite torrents. When your friends share files with you, the torrents will be given a preferential treatment and you will be able to download the files faster. In another words, the more friends you have and the more files you share, the faster is the downloading process.
On the backend, Vuze can also act as a UPnP server and stream your multimedia content over the local network. If you have downloaded plenty of movies and music, you will be able to watch/listen to them from your PS3, Xbox 360, smartphone or any other device that is DLNA compatible. I have used XBMC to playback the media files from another PC and it works great.
Overall, there are plenty of improvement over the previous Azureus and most, if not all, of them are pleasant and great improvment. If you are looking for a more user-friendly way to search and download your torrent files, or a console where you can view great HD content easily, then Vuze is definitely worth your attention.
If you have tried Vuze, which features did you like best?