I'm looking for a download manager with the following desirable features:

  • open-source
  • runs on Windows
  • allocates the whole file on disk at the start of download, to minimize fragmentation
  • calculates and saves a hash or checksum from the network stream while the download is in progress, rather than as a separate step when the file is finished downloading (this is to mitigate the small risk of the file being infected with a virus between being downloaded, and the hash being calculated)
  • supports downloading from websites that require logging in with username and password
  • can read a file (eg. CSV or HTML) of URLs to download

Less important:

  • add a comment to a file's property sheet (Summary tab) noting what URL it came from in case you forget! (these are stored in alternate data streams and don't affect the file's contents)
  • ability to resume interrupted downloads
  • allows specifying destination filenames / paths for each one

There is probably no program with all of these features, but having several of them would be good!

  • 1
    try uget i am not writting an answer because i am not sure it supports THAT much features Jun 21, 2015 at 11:36
  • 1
    I'm not clear on why you would want a download manager to calculate a checksum just before writing to disk as opposed to shortly after; it seems highly relevant that if, somehow, the download was infected before you could do anything with it, that detecting this would be very useful. Jun 21, 2015 at 21:30
  • @NathanTuggy, yes, the point of a hash or checksum is to detect any change in a file, but it's no good if it's based on a file which may already have changed, which could possibly happen if the file is written to disk, then read back again to do the checksum. You need an initial checksum that is uncorrupted, or at least, based on what comes down the network pipe. You can then do checksums at later times and compare them with the initial one.
    – Hugh Allen
    Jun 22, 2015 at 2:13
  • @HughAllen: Generally, downloads won't change once written to disk. If they are, you have bigger problems, to my mind, so this seems… very strange for a primary requirement. (If that's relaxed, I know of an excellent recommendation for a program I use that fits all other must-haves and most of the optional ones too.) Jun 22, 2015 at 2:15
  • @NathanTuggy, sounds good, write it up as an answer.
    – Hugh Allen
    Jun 22, 2015 at 6:16

1 Answer 1


Free Download Manager is open-source, and I've been using it for four or five years now (Vista and 8). Downloads (individually, or using default settings) can be set to:

  • allocate the entire file on disk before downloading
  • calculate checksum after downloading (and either auto-restart or notify you if the checksum mismatches)
  • use a username and password (from the built-in site manager or entered by hand)

Individual downloads can be generated in batches from URL patterns, text files, URLs on the clipboard, or spidered from a site.

All downloads are listed in FDM's history, which can be retained indefinitely or automatically purged after an interval; the history shows the download settings (URL, credentials, etc), a detailed log of the download progress, and so on. This can include a free-form comments field. FDM will resume interrupted downloads from any server that supports it, will display resume status in the download progress dialog, and by default will also split up sufficiently large downloads into sections to optimize network usage a little more.

There's a lot of other useful features like browser integration, groups, bandwidth restriction, torrent/FTP/streaming support, download scheduling, and so forth, but those are the main points you asked for.

It partially lacks a few less-important features:

  • Comments are not put in an ADS; instead, they're saved in FDM's own history, put in a description file, or a single field can be auto-appended to the filename.
  • Batch download filenames are not particularly flexible; if generated from a pattern, there's a corresponding pattern set to generate the filename, but otherwise you're stuck with the server filename.
  • Per comments, it makes no attempt to distinguish on-the-wire corruption from virus corruption after downloading.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.