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Original author(s)MetaMachine
Initial releaseJuly 2002; 18 years ago (2002-07)
Final release
0.53 / 2005
Operating systemWindows
Available inEnglish
TypePeer-to-peer file sharing

Overnet was a decentralized peer-to-peer computer network, usually used for sharing large files (e.g., movies and CD images). It implements the Kademlia algorithm and was created by Jed McCaleb, the creator of eDonkey2000. The first public beta of Overnet was released in July 2002.[1]

Before the takedown of Overnet and eDonkey2000, the two clients had merged into one client known as eDonkey2000. At its peak in June 2006, the combined network had approximately 645,000 concurrent users.[2] In late 2006, Overnet and all Overnet-owned resources were taken down as a result of legal actions from the RIAA and others. However, since the core of Overnet is decentralized, its clients are still able to function with limited functionality.

As of 2008, the Overnet Protocol was still being used by the Storm botnet for communication between infected machines.[3][4]

Takedown notice[edit]

On September 12, 2005 it was reported that MetaMachine, Inc. has agreed to settle with the RIAA for $30 million (Monterey Herald Article), and the website has been replaced by a text advertisement reflecting the RIAA's interpretation of copyright law:

If you steal music or movies, you are breaking the law.

Courts around the world -- including the United States Supreme Court --
have ruled that businesses and individuals can be prosecuted for illegal

You are not anonymous when you illegally download copyrighted material.

Your IP address is xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx and has been logged.

Respect the music,  download legally.


  1. ^ Steinwede, Andreas (July 22, 2002). "Vom eDonkey zum "Übernetz"" [From the eDonkey to the "Übernetz"] (in German). heise online.
  2. ^ Slyck's P2P Network Stats Page Archived 2006-06-15 at the Wayback Machine (offline)
  3. ^ "Balkanization". theregister.co.uk. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  4. ^ Robert Vamosi (September 12, 2008). "Anatomy of a botnet". CNet. Retrieved 19 March 2018.

External links[edit]

  • overnet.com - Official overnet website (but taken down by RIAA)
  • edonkey.com - Official eDonkey website (but taken down by RIAA)
  • overnetworld.com (down) - A discussion and sharing portal for Overnet