For those of you who think that downloading content is as simple as clicking any and every download link you see on the Internet, it may be time to reconsider. The ugly truth is that there is a lot of content that is intentionally posted without a download link, making it impossible to store on your local machine without the right tools. In fact, there are many types of data that can’t be stored locally without a download manager, and these types of software provide many ancillary benefits that improve users’ experiences. Folx is leading the way for Apple Macintosh computer users with a versatile download manager that combines all the functions a heavy downloader would want. The software is provided by Eltima, which makes various productivity, and problem solution tools for both Windows and Apple computers. Folx 5.0 was just released with a fresh new look. Let’s look at why this downloading tool may be just what you need.
As opposed to other download managers, Folx is really two software programs in one. You see, it is a Bit Torrent client as much as it is a download manager. And its interface is pretty easy to use – all a user needs to do is open the web page of the file they want to download, click the link in your browser, and Folx will take care of the rest. One thing it does to enhance download times is to divide a download into multiple threads (as much as 10).
Most people aren’t aware that TCP threads, sometimes called streams, have a finite download speed that isn’t determined by the bandwidth of your Internet connection. TCP (Transmission Control Protocol), a popular Internet protocol designed to transmit data, has features such as acknowledgements and windowing that make it slower than other protocols such as UDP. By splitting a TCP download into multiple threads, the download manager is able to download files faster.
In addition, it even has a useful resume feature that saves a lot of time if a large file download is interrupted. If users want, they can even tag files with an alias to better sort and manage your downloads. It even has a nice feature that lets users control how their bandwidth is allocated among different file operations to give them a higher degree of control over their uploads and downloads. All these features are great for users whom may be stuck with a slow, or intermittent internet line with no alternatives. Older folks remember 56k modems, and how important a download manager was in order to resume interrupted downloads.
However, most of these features are only available in the Pro version, and this paid version also contains features that will let users schedule downloads. Furthermore, the Pro version also has a smart speed adjustment feature, which automatically decreases download speeds when the Internet connection is used for other purposes. This means that users can browse the web during downloads without having to worry about unreasonably slow page load times due to a download hogging all the bandwidth.
Folx offers the freeware/upgrade option, whereby the free version lacks advanced features. The paid version, on the other hand, costs a one time fee of $19.95, which isn’t unreasonable for a quality download manager. The lifetime license only includes important updates, such as bug fixes, and an additional $9,95 is charged to unlock a lifetime upgrades guarantee for access to all new versions.
The paid Pro version allows up to ten threads for maximum download speeds, speed control for traffic allocation, download scheduling, a password manager, and app integration for iTunes. If these specific features are a must, the freeware version might not suffice. With that said, the free version still comes with two thread splitting, making it faster than regular downloading regardless.
Their support page is loaded with resources such as FAQs, forums, and user guides, and phone support is available during local business hours. Customer tickets can be opened by sending a quick an email form, and their website even claims that they will respond to your message within 1-2 business days, which can be a real pain if you need quick assistance, but generally speaking for this software, you will likely never need support. But for users that want faster support – under 4 hours – can pay for the urgent support plan. The urgent support plan costs $15 a year, which cloud be perceived as a pointless fee. Most people today have come to expect that any reliable software provider will have a customer support department that can resolve issues within a matter of hours. But, keep in mind that Folx can be used for free, while the pro version costs less than $20, and a small fee for support is a way for users to contribute to, and upkeep future release updates.
Folx 5 Download Manager for Mac is a perfect tool for those who download massive amounts of data from various sources. It makes the task enjoyable, and allows you to manage and control your downloads quickly, and to your specific needs, all while adding reliability to slow, or unstable internet connections. The downsides are that freeware users don’t get a full amount of threads for speedy downloads, as well as managing controls, but after giving it a test run for over two months, I have no bugs to report and was able to comparatively download much faster, sometimes twice as much bandwidth with Folx when testing slow sources, and the scheduling of downloads can be a productive time saving tool for some.