How to Morph
Revision: 8-05-06

      So, there's this totally revised Morpheus out and you don't have the slightest idea how to use it, right? Don't despair, because this is a change for the better, as long as you have some patience. If you think I'm wrong, you're a dumbass.

      What they did that's so revolutionary in the new version is that they hooked several file-sharing networks together around this central network called Gnucleus or Gnutellanet. I didn't actually read much documentation about this stuff; I'm just briefing you on what my finding were strictly from using Morpheus. Because several networks are involved (I've seen SwapNut, Napster, LimeWire, BearShare, Gnucleus, and Morpheus users so far), they had to create a different way to connect everyone. Essentially, everyone acts as their own node and the servers merely act as gateways (literally, not in the networking sense) to other user nodes. You connect to a server and it tells you who else is out there. They don't actually keep tabs on what you're uploading, downloading, and sharing.

      In order to actually find what you're looking for, you have to obtain as many server connections as your bandwidth can handle. I try to shoot for 8 or 10 connections with at least 20 friends (see the screenshot). I'm not really sure what "friends" are in this case, but my best guesses are that they are either the number of other servers it knows of or an abbreviation of the number of users that are connected to it. In either case, having lots of friends is a good thing, because it means that you'll find more of the file you're looking for.

      The bad thing (especially for us 56Kers) is that all these connections are eating your available bandwidth up. Why is that? Because the servers aren't managing any of the files, you have to do it yourself. Most of this comes in the form of query and ping packets. In simpler terms, query packets are what people are sending to see if you have the file they want and ping packets are just to see if you're there (it's like someone poking you and then asking you a question). When I get 5 or more good server connections, my 6KB/s of bandwidth is nearly shot from all these queries coming in. What's happening here is what us networking people call broadcast storms, and it's the big problem with Morpheus now. There's a way around this, though. Read on!

Step 1: Close a lot of the crap application that you're running and make sure you have a good connection. Reason being is Morpheus uses a lot of system resources and those 20 programs that you're running in the background are gonna make Morph crash the Operating System. Also, a bug with Morpheus occurs when it gets disconnected, you'll get an infinite number of connection dialogs that will eventually eat all your resources up and crash the OS, too. It's quite ironic that Morph doesn't like to share with the Operating System.
Step 2: Open Morpheus, close the annoying startup popups, and go straight to the "Connections" section. Hit the "Advanced" tab and then open the settings and go to "Connect". Set the minimum number of connections to 8 or more. Set minimum friends to something around 20. Go watch TV and come back during the commercial.
Step 3: When you get back, you'll hopefully have all 8 of your connections and several thousand Gigabytes of shared files to search through. Now search for all the files you're planning on getting during this Morpheus session.
Step 4: Start downloading the files and collecting as many users that have the files as possible. Why do you do this? How do you do this? As has been my experience with the new version of Morph, chances are you'll only be able to start a download from 1 out of 15 users with the file you want. If you're getting something large (like a movie or software) then you'll want to have a good queue of other users to download from if someone bails out. To do this, right click on the file and select "Re-Search". This tells Morpheus to send out more of those magic little query packets to your connected servers.
Step 5: If you feel that you have enough users queued up on a particular file, go ahead and start downloading it. If not, go to step 6. You can tell how many users you've found with the file by right-clicking it and selecting "Extended Info".
Step 6: If you haven't gotten enough users queued for a particular file, disconnect from servers that you've been connected to for a while and free up bandwidth so Morph can find new servers and consequently users with your file. The users that you've already found will stay available as long as Morph is still open. Go back to step 5 and repeat as necessary.
Step 7: For modem users (and others with limited bandwidth): I know it defeats the purpose of sharing your files, but if you want to finish downloading that 10MB MP3 before next Tuesday, you should disconnect from all servers and make sure that you don't start connecting to more. To do this, head back to the connections page and right-click the servers and select disconnect. Then configure and set the max connections to 0.
Step 8: Watch more TV, fall asleep, and wake up to all your successful downloads.

My terminology so you aren't entirely confused: Nodes can be anything connected to the network. So to be more clear, I call the nodes you connect to servers (cause that's what they are) and nodes you share files with are users (Morpheus calls them hosts).