Internet Download Manager (IDM) is definitely one of the most comprehensive download managers on Windows. It has everything from downloading online content in your preferred way and at extreme speeds. However, it is a paid tool with a limited trial period, and some novice users may find it a little complicating as well.
If you are looking for a good alternative to IDM, then we know a handful of them. Below is a list of 8 download managers that offer comparable features to IDM and won’t hurt your wallet like IDM.
Do you really need a Download Manager?
Many people ask this question – Does IDM really speed up downloads? Are third-party download Manager better than the default one? And well, the short answer is yes. Download Manager does speed up your download.
When you download a file using default download option on your browser, your ISP and remote server puts a cap on your bandwidth. But a download manager breaks down a single file into several pieces. This increases the number of connections to the server, which further increases the bandwidth you can grab from the remote server and ISP.
In short, a download manager optimizes your network bandwidth. However, you get extra speed than what you are paying for. If you have a 16 Mb/s connection, you’ll get the same speed with IDM. It’s just that if you use an IDM, then the other person on your Network will get less internet speed. And you’ll exact all juice from the remote server.
Best IDM Alternative
If you are looking for a free and simple alternative to IDM, then Free Download Manager should be your choice. It is an open-source download manager that is astonishingly easy to use but at the same time very powerful as well. It can download torrents, automatically fetch downloads from your choice browser, preview media files while downloading, resume, pause or restart downloads, schedule downloads, remotely control the manager and much more.
Similar to IDM, Free Download Manager also accelerates downloads. It claims to speed up download speed up to 10 times, although I found it to be as fast as IDM; which claims to speed up downloads 5 times fasters.
Another open source alternative to IDM, JDownloader is a more comprehensive download manager as compared to Free Download Manager. However, it may also be a little complicating for novice users. It supports all basic download management features like ability to preview media files, fetch downloads from browsers, resume broken downloads, schedule downloads and download all types of content a web pages.
There are some unique advanced features available as well, including website plugin support to automatically download and manage content from popular websites, automatically solve captchas, remotely manage JDownloader, manage archives, create download rules and a whole lot more. JDownloader is arguably more advanced than IDM, but of course it has some learning curve as well.
A rather new player in the category, EagleGet has a polished and very intuitive interface. It gives simple buttons to quickly download and manage files. And right from the main interface, you can grab media files inside web pages and download files in group with ability to schedule individual files.
It doesn’t offer too advanced features, but essentials are definitely there. You can remotely control EagleGet, convert media files format (FFMpeg needs to be downloaded), capture data on websites (customizable), automatically download content as it become available and more.
DownThemAll is actually an extension for Firefox browsers, so it’s a good option for Firefox users or users willing to switch to Firefox. Being an extension doesn’t mean it lacks any features, it is actually very advanced and perfect for Firefox users. DownThemAll is highly customizable and allows you download all types of linked or embedded content on any web page. Taking advantage of filters, you can quickly download required content on multiple website with just a single click on DownThemAll extension.
There is also automatic filtering system that remembers your recent preferences to download future content according to it. It can also auto rename files for you with great customization capabilities. Additionally, it also speeds up downloads speed up to 4 times using same method as IDM.
Xtreme Download Manager has a sleek interface that focuses on showing your downloads using different categories and filters, making it easier to quickly access what you are looking for. Similar to other download managers in this list, it can also fetch downloads from your browser, download downloadable content on web pages, batch download content and other basic things.Apart from that it can also gives full control over which sites it is allowed to download content from or types of content it should download.
XDM also has a built-in media converter that lets you convert downloaded files and even local files inside your PC. However, it isn’t advanced as a fully featured converter, but does a great of quick conversions.
Download Accelerator Manager has a very similar interface to IDM, so it might be a good choice if you like IDM interface. Unfortunately, it isn’t as feature rich as IDM or some other download managers in this list. It lets you quickly download media files from web pages as they play and schedule batch downloads. Download Accelerator Manager is also really simple with minimal interface.However, some of its advanced features are only available in the premium version, such as ability to download batch content with 1-click, use skins and faster downloads.
I also found an adware while installing Download Accelerator Manager, even though it clearly says on the website that it contains no adware or virus; quite offsetting I must say.
Download Accelerator Plus is also a paid tool with a limited free feature that should work for most users. It will speed up download speed and claims to speed it up by 10 times. Additionally, it automatically checks download links for you let you know whether the link is working or not, and it also check the downloads using online antivirus programs to ensure the file is safe.
Its other features include ability to preview half downloaded media files, convert video files formats, convert videos to mp3 and get add-ons for additional features. You will have to upgrade to the pro version if you want maximum download speed, keep downloads private and get more download management features.
Mipony didn’t gave me the best experience while installing and launching due to multiple adware and recommendations in the interface itself. However, it does offers some handy features that enables it to be part of this list. Mipony has a built-in fully featured search engines that allows you to open websites inside its interface to download content from it. The search engine is also specially created to capture embedded and downloadable links.
Furthermore, it also has a built-in statistics tools that shows your previous sessions and download speeds. So you understand how things are working.
I believe Free Download Manager is definitely the best option if you want something simple and effective. However, JDownloader is also very advanced and many of its features are not even available in IDM itself. If you are an advanced user and want a download manager that is free and able to handle your needs, then go for JDownloader.
If you know any other reliable alternatives to Internet Download Manager, do share with us in the comments below.