Review Date/Links last valid at: Thursday 7th June 2007, 3:30 PM (GMT+10:00) Preface: Why do we need download managers? Maybe if we lived in a country where the amount we downloaded wasn’t that precious, we wouldn’t care (points his finger to Telstra). The reality is of course though we’ve had that odd power failure, BSOD and disconnection from our ISP... Procedure (until a good Download Manager is found): Install with recommended settings and run. Configure options for simplicity of use. Download a 1 MB file. Download a file greater than 200MB. Clean Up Registry. Retry Software. Uninstall. Clean Up Registry. Software Setup: Windows OS – Vista x64 Web Browser – Internet Explorer x64 Security Setup – Router Firewall and Internet Options – Pretty damn “High” Outcomes/What "I'm" Looking For: If a program comes up with a single error, it will have the shortest review you’ll ever see. Let’s face it, when we download a massive file from a link we catch from browsing web sites (whether it be an application or demo of an upcoming game) we just want to right-click and have it saved to a folder of our choice! No other BS! Download speed will not really be an issue so long as it provides according to your ISP plan’s specs. Not interested in FTP, Browsing, Torrents and other features. Rank #1: Free Download Manager 2.1 (FDM) Believe it or not, but this was the second last program I tried out. Why? Because it’s free! And technically nothing is really free. You’d expect some kind of harsh treatment like adware or spyware. But surprisingly, this program doesn’t seem to have any (MSN Messenger seems more dangerous). Installation is easy with no reboot required. Customisation of options goes such a long way, which shows great flexibility without clutter. For my purposes, I did have to customise nevertheless. All in all, you couldn’t ask for more from a free program! Rank #2: Internet Download Manager 22.214.171.124 (IDM) This was the second program I trialled out. It’s not a free application which is a major negative (who’d want to buy a download manager, really?) So what are you paying to get out of this program that you can’t get with FDM? The answer is nothing! Installation is a bit of a hassle with a reboot required (uninstall). More than normal amount of errors after uninstall and clean up of the registry. The customisations are a little cluttered but nowhere close to or below mediocre standard. It seems to be the fastest (by only a few kilobytes). GUI looks Windows 98ish ugly! Rank #3: Download Accelerator Plus v8.5 Premium (DAP) This program sort of works ... good news is that there is a free version; bad news is that there is a premium version with more features that you have to pay for. Initially I had to ask myself if the “Extreme” speed download option really did anything. I don’t think so. Bad customisation of options and bad GUI interface cluttered with web browsing BS! Seriously, why would I want to know the top files that other people are downloading (Messenger 8, eMule, Google Earth ... Bah, Meh, Psst ...)? In addition I’m pretty sure I personally encountered an error that rendered the program useless. Rank #4: NetTransport 2.40 Vista I was very disappointed with NetTransport. I’ve used one of their free versions (version 1.something) since Windows ME. It was one of those install and forget programs. Use to be great. Still feels great with a fresher GUI and once again not having to fiddle with the options after installing. I think this had the least amount of errors in the registry after uninstall. But unfortunately this version didn’t seem to work at all! Must be an x86 only thing Rank #5: GetRight 6.2a Well ... it installs ... and looks ugly ... (right-click browser context menu script error) Rank #6: HiDownload 6.99 Well ... it installs ... and looks pretty ... (right-click browser context menu script error) Rank #7: LeechGet 2007 Release 2000 This was the very last program I tried out. I gave it a shot for reviewing sake and to see whether it was any better than FDM (since LeechGet is also free for private use). Tons of errors after uninstall and clean up of registry. Options feel limited and alas, I cannot download a file when using its download option in the browser context menu ... (script error) Conclusion: Yeah I’m pretty sure there are other download managers I haven’t tried that are worth having a go at. But these are the main one’s that came across my path when looking for the right one. Whilst I’m pretty sure each of these Download Managers works on an OS like Windows XP SP2 flawlessly (yes I have tested most and they work) ... the only and clear winner for an x64 system is the FDM.