Bittorrent and Gnutella might be hogging the headlines of the peer to peer (P2P) world, but close behind comes Ares, a successful P2P application that boasts of having its own decentralized network and a simple, quick access interface. Ares spun-off from Gnutella in 2002, and since then has been building a strong and dedicated community of users.
Installing Ares only takes a few minutes and the interface is simple enough that anybody will feel comfortable with it. The new version has a very sleek and dark interface, not unlike that of WMP 11. When you start Ares, it lets you auto scan your PC to find files you might like to share on the network. Beginners will be relieved to know that there is no complex configuration process involved. Once Ares is installed, all you need to do is select the search tab and type the name of the file you want to download. Once it appears, double click on it to begin downloading. You’ll be able to check its progress in the transfer tab. The recent update adds bittorrent support, opening Ares up to loads of new content.
If you enjoy exchanging words with other users, click on the chat tab and connect to one of the thousands of channels available. You can pick up tips on how to use Ares better, ask which files other users recommend or just chit chat about your life in general. You can even insert emoticons into your conversation and keep a list of your favorite chat channels.