For your #6 I would reccomend rtorrent. I use it on my server and it is awesome. Small footprint, has all the capabilities of the big GUI ones like throttle up/down, seed for certain time or to a certain ratio, automatic download, etc. I just have a directory nfs mounted to my other machines and when I see something I like I will download the torrent and save it to that directory. rtorrent sees it and starts downloading. I just run it with screen. so it would be like:

#screen rtorrent

Then just resume from wherever you want to check.

Also may I suggest hellanzb for your newsgroup needs. Awesome also. Basically the rtorrent equivalent for newsgroups.