Belgian user may hold monthly download record

A Belgian internet user downloaded 2.6TB of data in the space of a month according to his (or her) internet service provider. And amazingly the ISP is happy about it.

Telenet recently launched a service known as “Vrij Downloaden”. It translates as “free download”, but rather than referring to the price, it appears to be more about the lack of restrictions. The company doesn’t outright promise unlimited downloading for its fastest connections, but its fair use policy simply means you can’t use so much that it begins to affect the service for other users.

The company has now published a list of the 25 users with the most data downloaded in the first month of the service. Eight managed to clock up a full TB (1,024 GB), with the number one slot going to a user with 2,680GB.

What’s particularly impressive about that is that the user was only on the third fastest package, with a maximum download speed of 30MBps. One message board poster notes that this works out as the equivalent of eight and a half days of continuous downloading at full speed.

What the user actually downloaded isn’t known. Officially Telenet does not allow copyright-infringing content to be downloaded so we’ll be generous and assume the person tried out 570 different Linux distributions designed to each fill a DVD.

If you were to put it in a more cynical context, the data is enough that if it were entirely video content and burned to single layer discs at their two-hour capacity, it would have taken 47 full days to watch, which would certainly be an impressive achievement in the space of a month.

In case your wondering, the package used in this case to download the 2.6TB of data costs 61.32 euros a month: just over US$75.

I’ve not come across any confirmed reports of anyone topping the 2.6TB figure. However, a writer at Arstechnica says an unnamed US provider told him of a customer who managed 4TB in a month.