Azureus is dead, long live... Vuze?

A name change, social networking, and multiple torrent-tracker searching are the big new features in Vuze 3.1--the torrent client formerly known as Azureus.

The torrent client Azureus changed its name and added some nifty social-networking features with the release of its latest upgrade. Now called Vuze, after the name of desktop video player it launched last year, the new client bundles the two together and throws in some new features.

The new Vuze torrent-searching Web site. (Credit: CNET Networks)

The two most notable things about Vuze 3.1 are the search engine and the social networking. It's rejiggered but still open source; users can spider across multiple torrent-tracking Web sites such as MiniNova while looking for content. The social-networking features let you share your favorite torrents directly with friends and create profiles, although more advanced features like chatting haven't been introduced yet.

Although Vuze has taken steps in the past few months that put it squarely in the path of the oncoming ISP juggernaut, taking on Comcast with the introduction of a plug-in that tracks and compiles statistics on ISP throttling behavior, it's not clear how many Azureus users welcome the jump to the new Vuze.