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KaZaa gives you Anything and Everything
Apr 22, 2005 12:44 AM 4487 Views
(Updated Apr 22, 2005 01:50 AM)

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The Internet is a vast web of resources, and one of the better ways of finding something you like, although using only your net connection but not the Net as in ''Information Superhighway'' is KaZaa Media Desktop v3.0, newly released version free from many security bugs contained in the previous version.


To download KaZaa, you have to go to kazaa.com and click on a ''Download Kazaa'' graphics ad. Of course, opt for the free adware version. You download a 570 kb file in five minutes. Now, run that, set the options you want to, and lay back until 7 MB downloads automatically into your computer. DO NOT TURN OFF YOUR PC OR DISCONNECT MODEM for you'll simply have to wait to download the entire version again.


Kazaa sets up on your computer, an icon placed on desktop, one on your taskbar, and we're ready to go. Simply type in an username, ie <username>@kazaa, set your security levels and you're all set.


Kazaa Media Desktop is a peer to peer file sharing network. That simply means that all the files that you can access through this software(that includes audio,video,playlists,software,documents and images) are stored in a particular folder in all the Kazaa users' hard disks(instead of on servers if you simply surf the web). If you are logged onto Kazaa, one folder in your computer(named ''My Shared Folder'' which is installed when you download Kazaa) and its contents are accessible to all the users presently logged onto Kazaa. No worries, they can only download the files stored into that particular folder, not change or destroy anything. Not unless YOU download a virus, and there is an in-built virus detector. As for Kazaa, there are over 3 million worldwide users connected every second, which means an average of 670 million files accessible everytime you log on, which also means about 30 million or more GB's(1 GB=1024 MB) of information. And you can also access the internet on Kazaa in an included window, so any information you can get solely on the net, is also available.


When you run Kazaa, you see a large, organized window. Obviously, the menu runs across the top title bar, where the options are File, View, Player, Favorites, Tools, Actions, Help.


File -Starts/stops the connection.


View -You can choose to view/hide some window panes.


Player -Options to run MP3/video files in Windows Media Player(7.0 and above only).


Favorites -All your favourite links from Internet Explorer.


Tools -Clears the cache or brings up the security options.


Actions -Continues,discontinues,pauses,researches a particular download.


Help -Self explanatory.


Of course, you can use Kazaa's options via the simple click of a mouse and without the hassle of the menu. But still, it is available for those who want it.


Next, the Kazaa window has six menus you can go to.


Search - The search window, where you can search for any file.The window is divided into two parts. The left categorizes your choices into audio,video etc,including a detailed search option, and the right pane shows the webpage of Kazaa initially, and then separates into your search results. Now, unlike a web page, these search results appear for every file found for any user who has that file on his hard disk(on My Shared Folder). Naturally, if more members have the same file, the download is broken up and is thus faster. All this information is presented to you in the right panel.


Traffic - The section where you get to see how your downloads are faring. For instance, if a download has stopped due to a particular user(who owns the file you are downloading) logging off, it automatically searches for a new user and continues. In case it has stopped, you can restart it again. Also, if a file has been downloaded to a certain extent(a few hundred kilobytes), you can preview what you are downloading, so in case you are downloading the wrong stuff(music/videos only), you can start all over again.The other things you can do in this menu is cancel or clear downloaded files, and view what files are being ''uploaded'' from you by other users.


MyKazaa - Simply shows you the files downloaded by you at their stored location, neatly categorized.


Theater - Play your audio/video files, view documents through the embedded Windows Media Player 7(if already installed) or other software.


Peerpoints, and Shop - Peer points is a points sharing method. You earn points by downloading particular gold files, but these files are mostly useless so basically forget this option exists. Shopping on Kazaa is not my forte, downloading is much more fun.


Now What ??


Now that you know how Kazaa operates and all about it, just explore any file that comes into your head. The latest hindi track ? I downloaded ''Woh Lamhe/Woh Yaadein'' from the film ''Zeher''. As for English tracks, you won't even bother to buy cd's after getting Kazaa.The latest good read ? I downloaded pdf(Adobe Acrobat Reader Format) versions of ''The Da Vinci Code'' by Dan Brown, ''Harry Potter and the Order of The Phoenix'' by J.K. Rowling, ''Complete Lord of the Rings'' and several other complete novels and short stories, and even entire magazines, guitar tablature, newspapers, poems via Kazaa. The latest music video ? Yeah, perhaps the hindi video will come a month later, but this is the first place it will come, directly from other Kazaa users. I downloaded bootlegged(personal collection, not from official tapes) Nirvana, Guns n Roses, Pantera, Slipknot music videos and songs you'll never get on the Net. Software ? I downloaded the full version of Halo 2 before it hit Indian markets, Warcraft 3 full version, as well as Windows XP, Microsoft Office 2003 full edition, Maya Full edition!! You can't get better than that.


So you understand that virtually anything and everything is accessible to you. However, choose carefully. You have a vast net of resources, including stuff you may want to give a miss, or find stuff you never though existed or stuff you thought people would ever care to create at your fingertips. For instance, you shall get many images and videos that have created news scandals very easily.(hint : private videos,pictures from celebrity magazines,paparazzi etc). So use the software according to your needs, it has both good and bad sides.


To use it wackily, however, is pretty amusing. I have downloaded ''CIA AUTHORIZED INFORMATION : TOP SECRET'' with CIA stamp et all, to ''THE MATRIX'', ''PULP FICTION'' film scripts. That to me, is pretty amazing. For teens, Kazaa is a boon, if used wisely, and even better if not used so.


That's about all Kazaa does and all that it is about. The only irritating thing about the free version are the banners that are present and an incessant pop-up that suddenly awakens every ten minutes.Go download it and start using your web connection better. It's just a download away.


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