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Software Review: Auto FTP Premium

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Introducing AutoFTP Premium 3.9 from PrimaSoft. The Title does it justice very well, as this is a program for the FTP'er on the go. I haven't seen many FTP programs cross my path that can do as much as this one does. PrimaSoft has done a great job in meeting the needs of it's clients when it comes to a professional program that's easy to use.

As far as setup goes, it's pretty basic. Click on the Setup icon, after 3 of the usual agreement screens you can choose the install DIR as you wish, the default DIR is c:\autoftps. This is new to me, after you choose the DIR this software actually has an information screen that tells you how to properly uninstall/remove the software if you ever wish to, very neat. Adds a handy icon on the desktop(a little satellite) and an option in the start menu under AutoFTP premium_s in Programs. It gives you a brief summary of the options you have chosen right before it starts to copy files, for the install type it says "Complete" but the is no option for any other choices, like without the help files or assistant, which would save some space on the hard drive. Once the install is finished(which only took about 20 seconds) the contents of the folder comes up to show you some shortcuts to help files, company websites, and the program exe file. On first execution of the software you get a pleasant welcome screen(only once) and it strongly recommends if you have not used any FTP programs in the past to use the handy built in FTP ASSISTANT. Once you close that window, you can start to configure the software.

Once the welcome screen is gone you get a PREFERENCES window where you can set the program up to your liking. The Tabs are as follows: Dialing, FTP Mode, Transfers, Auto-Transfers, Sounds, and Proxy. In the DIALING tab you can choose the type of connection you have, choices are Dialup or LAN/cable. Surprisingly enough, DIALUP is the default selection. Other options in this tab you can find options like: Display hints, redial count(5sec default), wait for connection(30secs default), Log actions(selected by default). In FTP MODE you can choose between which mode you want, either AUTO(default), binary or text. This will also transfer most text files but yes you can even add more in this tab. The tab TRANSFERS you can set the failed transfer retries(2 by default), set time stamps or change the transfer timeout(1min by default). This next feature in the AUTO-TRANSFERS tab is very useful. Abort transfer if it goes below a specified KB'S; to avoid those 4 day downloads/uploads. You can also set the "abort auto-trans fer retries" to whatever you like, 3 is the default. The SOUNDS tab only has 3 options to choose from. This software comes with custom transfer completed, Connected, and Error sounds. This also comes with a Browse button to choose your own .wav files as desired. The last tab is the PROXY tab, pretty self explanatory. Passive mode can be configured and your proxy settings are easy to fill out. I went with all of the default configurations and everything went perfect for the review.

The GUI of this software is like many of the FTP programs out there, with 5 useful windows. Top 2 are the contents of the local hard drives, the middle 2 are the contents of the Host(Left is the folders, Right is the Files), finally the bottom of the screen is reserved for the transfer status window. Many handy buttons can be found in the toolbar at the top of the screen right below the menu. In the Menu you will find 3 Options to help you out. File, View and Help along with the company website can be found at the very top. Below the toolbar consists of 10 easy to find/use buttons for the most used items within the software. The Buttons are : Connect, View/Hide transfer, View/Hide transfer scheduler, View/Hide log, Auto FTP assistant, Preferences, Large Icons, Small Icons, List Icons, and Detailed view which is selected by default.

AutoFTP is a very small program and doesn't use up many system resources at all. The sounds help you to understand everything that's going on incase you miss out, due to it's quick response time you might not be able to read everything that is happening in the status window. When you 1st run the program and configure all the preferences it brings up a FTP connection Info window with the host/user/pass/port info for where you have access to the lost + found and public folder, connection for me worked on the 1st try and was very quick. When uploading you have the option to resume if you choose to abort or pause a transfer for whatever reason, same goes for downloading. I also noticed when files were being transferred the numbers move in realtime, which means that they change constantly and never stay the same for long enough to read them. If editing the files before you send them is something you enjoy, like renaming files, then it has this option too! What if your new to FTPing and don't really kno w what your doing? The build in AutoFTP assistant is great! The only complaint I have is that the background is bright yellow and text is black making it very hard to read. To access this great assistant just click on the 5 button located right below the menu. You will have 2 options when the assistant loads; immediate transfer and scheduled transfer. So if your getting program errors(which I didn't) maybe the help file would be better. In 6 easy to follow steps the assistant will walk you through how to do one or more file transfers immediately. This is the best feature, the AUTO-FTP assistant will help you to setup a scheduled FTP in only 5 easy to follow steps! It's as easy as picking a date/time, whether you want it to repeat every day/week/month, delete the file after transferring it, disconnect after the transfer has finished. 2 more features I really enjoyed in this AUTO-FTP feature are; Run application after transfer is complete and Send email to ***@***.COM when transfer is complete(there is also an "Only on error" box to tick off).

PrimaSoft has put a lot of hard work and effort into making this software professional looking and easy to use. There are many features in this package that would be very enticing for the avid FTP'er making is easy to satisfy the needs of just about everyone really into the FTP scene. If you would like to purchase this software it will cost you $95us($214cdn) for a single user licence which comes with full tech support and upgrade options at very discounted prices. When you purchase it you can also get the software on Floppy disk(yes it fits), CDROM, or you can download it and they will email you the Registration # you'll need to use the software after the 30 day trial. Anyone can download and try this software for FREE and get the fully functional PREMIUM version for 30days. Before you go out and buy it, I would try it out and if you like the AUTO-FTP option and use it often then it's worth the $95us.

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