I am one who rarely checks the downloads folder. Consequentially, when I do check it, I have to sort out from a huge list of images, installers, fonts, archives and folders. Not pleasant. Of course, I could start deleting downloads as soon as they're no longer needed or sort them into folders. But that requires forming a habit and that means two weeks of intense concentration to which I am not yet ready to commit. Incidentally, today I stumbled upon a download accelerator that does much more than simple acceleration.
Don't tell Google
Although the name may remind you of an old joke about downloading the Internet, I assure you it's in fact a serious application. Internet Download Manager (IDM) has multiple benefits for the downloading person. First of all, it takes precedence for anything you are downloading off with your browser. Once you access the download link, IDM pops up showing the exact download URL and then offering a suggested download location and the possibility to add a description. You can then start the download or postpone it for later.
The main window shows a tree view of all your downloads, grouped into category folders. By the way, IDM creates a structure inside your Downloads folder. That's what won my admiration if you can imagine. Besides that, you can begin, pause, stop or schedule downloads as you wish. Unfinished downloads are set up in an easy to manage queue.
One very cool feature of IDM, and one that could convince someone to install IDM for that alone, is the web video and audio downloader. When IDM installs you can opt to also add an extension to your browser. This ensures that whenever there is some media on a page you will see a download button. Downloading an online video for example works just as a normal download with IDM, except that you will also get to choose encoding and quality before the standard download dialog.
Internet Download Manager also features the Site Grabber. With Grabber you can download parts or entire pages off the Internet. For example, you could download pictures in bulk or simply save pages locally for offline browsing. What's more, there are a lot of customization options and preferences available. So I'm sure everybody will be able to tailor IDM to their need.
- Download acceleration - faster downloads
- Site Grabber - download entire sites
- Download queuing - prioritize downloads)
- Download Scheduler - schedule when downloads should be performed
- Web media downloader - browser add on for downloading video and audio
- File sorting - automatically sorts downloads by file type
- Greater control over downloads
- Sorting downloads is immensely useful
- Doesn't scan for viruses (I'm kidding)
Internet Download Manager was a very pleasant surprise and it is now included in my permanent program tool kit. It is an invaluable tool for any web surfer.