An Overview of Gnutella

by Brenda Batkins
Sept. 1, 2017 0 comments SANS Institute threats/vulnerabilities

A recent review of software loaded on a personal computer revealed a hitherto unknown (at least, by me) software program called “Toadnode.” Nestling serenely among the standard Microsoft programs was an unknown entity. What the heck is Toadnode; what does it do?My first step was to go to my favorite internet search engine – Altavista at By my keying in Toadnode, the search engine returned the home address as When I reached the home page, I learned that Toadnode was a peer to peer file-sharing program, compatible with Gnutella. Since I was unfamiliar with Gnutella, I decided to base my certification research document on the Gnutella protocol. This document addresses the following issues: the origins of Gnutella, what it is and how it works, some Gnutella-compatible software, and some possible security concerns.