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WordPress Must Have Plugins: Download Managers

If you serve any kind of files for download on your WordPress blog(s), one thing you should definitly be looking out for is a download manager plugin. Post attachments are oh-so-2007. Uploading files to your server and hand-posting links everywhere is a pain in the butt. And what about your hunger for statistics?

Well, if you agree with me, then i would like to tell you about two fantastic plugins:

  • Drain Hole: This is a real time saver. Some of the features are:

    • Automatic scanning of directories to generate downloadable files.

    • Simple interface to upload files

    • Categorized downloads

    • SEO urls (no more of those weird links)

    • Automatic hotlink protection

    • Simple integration with SVN repositories

    • Can maintain versions of the files (cool !!)

    • Download urls can be different from their actual path in your server

    • Can even pick files from directories residing out of your www or public_html directory.

    • Superior download security by assigning permissions based on WordPress user roles.

    • Template tags allow you to insert any particular file(s) or list of all files or files in particular folder on any post, page, sidebar widget

    • Statistics - no. of downloads, IP addresses, referrers, etc

    • Can force files like php, html, txt etc to be downloaded rather than displaying in browser

    • Pretty, can attach icons to files for displaying, different templates can be used for displaying files

    • and…..AJAX

phew, lemme catch my breath here…you can download it from here.

  • WP-Vault: This is the second best plugin I could find in this category. It is not as feature rich as Drain Hole, e.g., it misses SEO URls, hotlink protection, svn integration, versioning, etc, but it does have its own set of interesting features:

    • get files from FTP/HTTP directly without downloading to computer first. (a real time saver)

    • Image galleries from stored images.

    • Supports WordPress’ caching mechanism to reduce load on database.

You can take your own pick out of the two. And yeah, this blog uses Drain Hole, if you must ask.

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