Running uTorrent as a Service on Windows Home Server 2011

Step 1: Download and Install uTorrent

  • Download uTorrent 2.2.1 (390 KB)
  • Install uTorrent as normal, by opening the downloaded EXE
  • It should install itself into C:\Program Files (x86)\uTorrent

Step 2: Configure uTorrent Web UI

  • Run uTorrent as normal (e.g. Start Menu)
  • Go to Options menu and select Preferences
  • Go to the Directories folder and set the folders where you want your torrents to be stored
    • Make a note of these directories, as you will need them in step 8

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  • Go to the Web UI section and make three changes
    • Tick “Enable Web UI”
    • Set a username and password
    • Tick “Alternative Listening Port”; leave the number as 8080
      • Note: This sub-step is not strictly necessary but gives you a higher chance of things working first time

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Step 3: Test uTorrent Web UI

  • Using a different computer on the local network ensure you can get to the uTorrent Web UI
  • The web address should of the form http://homeserver:8080/gui/
  • Note: You must replace homeserver in the above URL with the name of the computer where you install uTorrent.
  • The browser should ask for a username and password. Use the values provided in Step 2
  • You should see the uTorrent Web UI.
  • If you do not see the uTorrent Web UI do not proceed any further. You have a networking problem. Seek help.
  • At this stage you have a working uTorrent Web UI but it is NOT running as a service. This means that torrents can still only be downloaded when a user is logged on and running uTorrent. Continue with the following steps to run it as a service…
  • Important: Now Close down uTorrent by choosing File->Exit.

Step 4: Copy the uTorrent settings file

  • Copy the settings.dat file from C:\Users\<User>\AppData\Roaming\uTorrent to C:\Program Files (x86)\uTorrent

Note: Depending on your username you will need to substitute <User> in the above path

Step 5: Download and Install SRVANY.exe

  • Download Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit Tools (11.8 MB).
  • Install the entire tool suite as normal, by opening the downloaded exe.
  • By default srvany.exe will be installed to C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Resource Kits\Tools\srvany.exe

Step 6: Create Windows Service for uTorrent

  • Open an administrative command prompt by following these steps:
    • Navigate to Start Menu –> Accessories –> Command Prompt
    • Right click and select “Run as Administrator”
  • At the command prompt enter the following:
    sc create uTorrent binPath= "C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Resource Kits\Tools\srvany.exe" obj= "NT AUTHORITY\LocalService" start= auto
  • Note: Do not remove the spaces between the equals sign and parameters. This is an oddity of sc command and is required
  • If this works you should see something like the screenshot below:

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If you get the “Access is denied” error then you are not running as administrator.

Step 7: Configure the SRVANY.EXE service

  • If you want to perform this step manually you will need to know about regedit. Here are the steps:
  • Run regedit
    • Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\uTorrent\Parameters
    • Create the Parameters key if it does not exist
    • Under the Parameters Key, add a new String Value named Application
    • Set the value to be C:\Program Files (x86)\uTorrent\uTorrent.exe
    • If you have done everything correctly it should look like the screenshot below:

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Step 8: Modify permissions on your downloads directory

By default Windows will not allow your uTorrent service to read or write to the disk. In order for uTorrent to work you need to add read & write permissions on the directory or directories you specified in Step 2.

  • Navigate to the directory
  • View the directory properties
  • Select the Security tab
  • Click the Edit… button
  • Click the Add… button
  • Enter LOCAL SERVICE (including the space) then click OK
  • Ensure “Allow Modify” is ticked, and OK everything
  • It should look something like the screeshot below:

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Step 9: Ensure the uTorrent service is running

  • Load the services control panel (Start->Run->Services.msc)
  • Locate the service named uTorrent and verify the Status column says “Started”.
  • If it does not say “Started”, then click the Start Service button

Finally…

  • Log off your Windows session and repeat Step 3 to verify that the web UI is still working and you can download torrents successfully.

General trouble shooting:

  • Double check that uTorrent.exe is not running on your desktop.
    • Note: By default clicking the close button in top right of the uTorrent window will not actually exit the application
  • Double check that uTorrent.exe is running as a service.
    • In task manager, “Show processes from all users”, ensure you can see uTorrent.exe running with LOCAL SERVICE displaying in the User Name column
  • Please leave a comment if you have any issues with this guide

58 thoughts on “Running uTorrent as a Service on Windows Home Server 2011

  1. Homer

    Hey Jack – Thanks! Great document! I have used it several times!

    I have been trying out the media streaming with WHS2011 and I am finding that when the file owner is LOCAL SERVICE, it does not show up on any clients (i.e. Media Player, WDTV, etc.) But when I change the file owner to Adminsitrators, is shows up fine.

    Any thoughts on why and how to fix this? I am getting tired of manually changing the owner on each download. Should I run the service under a different user than LOCAL SERVICE?

    Thanks!

  2. Dom

    If anyone is wondering how to get this working with uTorrent v3, I managed it by following the guide above except:
    1. Skip step 4
    2. Set the Application value to C:\Users\\AppData\Roaming\uTorrent\uTorrent.exe where is the username you set it up under
    3. Skip step 8
    4 . In step 9, right click the uTorrent service and click properties, click the Log On tab, choose “this account” then enter the username you set it up under and enter the password.

    It worked for me, but I’m running as Administrator, so will probably do it over using a dedicated user account

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