Opera, the popular cross-platform web browser has a bug in its BitTorrent engine which leaves it vulnerable to an attack which renders its host machine unusable.
It is being reported that Opera v9.20 is vulnerable to an attack which causes it to consume 100% of its host machine’s resources, rendering the PC unusable.
Proof of concept code has been published which shows that the attack can be triggered when people try to download a malformed .torrent file. The bug causes the host machine running Windows XP SP1 or SP2 to become unstable.
There is currently no work-around so anyone worried about this situation should disable the BitTorrent engine within Opera by following the instructions found on Opera’s site.
June 20th 2006 saw the release of Opera V9, which included BitTorrent support for the first time. At the time, Jon S. von Tetzchner, CEO, Opera Software said “For Opera 9, we worked hard to push the limits of what people expect from a Web browser, with increased speed, new Web standards support and innovative features such as widgets and BitTorrent”
Anyone who has relied on Opera for their BitTorrent needs but would like to try an alternative should check out the official uTorrent Beginners Guide and some of our previous guides on using other clients.