10 Best FTP Clients

Last Updated: May 18, 2016

Even when acknowledging that managing website files through web hosting dashboard is an easy task, it’s a fact that several users prefer FTP Clients when it comes to uploading or updating website files. When compared to the web UI scenario, File Transfer Protocol clients are way too easier, since you can simply download or upload an entire folder / huge file, quite reliably, without all those dialogue boxes and all. In addition, FTP-based transfers are very secure too. Being of low size and resource consumption, using a FTP Client makes sense, given that you choose the best — or, at least, the most appropriate — FTP Client for you. In this post, however, we’ve a list of 10 best FTP Clients, discussing noticeable features of each. So, shall we move onto the list?

Best FTP Clients

1. FileZilla

FileZilla is a multi-platform FTP Client that is available for Windows, Mac OS X and GNU/Linux! This free yet powerful FTP client boasts a lot of features, ranging from intuitive User Interface to support for various protocols. Considerably the standard FTP Client, it includes an impressive set of documentation, which is one of the reasons it’s attracting newbie developers and professionals out there. FileZilla offers support for FTP, FTPS and SFTP and support for IPv6 as well.

Indeed, its tab-based interface is sense-making for newbies and its login process is easy-enough too. For those who are bothered about ‘looks’ of software, FileZilla may seem bit rudimentary, but it’s that straightforward approach why professionals prefer FileZilla to other FTP software out there. Other noticeable features of FileZilla include its support drag-and-drop support, ability to pause and resume when you’re uploading large files, filename filters, the feature to compare two directories etc.

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2. Cyberduck

Cyberduck is yet another open-source FTP Client that offers support for Windows and Mac OS X! If you do care about looks of the FTP client you use, you’d be interested in using Cyberduck. It offers support for FTP, SFTP, OpenStack Swift, WebDAV and Amazon S3. There’s also support for using Google Cloud Storage and Rackspace Cloud Files, making it easy for you to deal with your sites. Compared to other tools, Cyberduck has optimized options for organizing and bookmarking, such as Spotlight Importer, history etc.

Graphical User Interface of Cyberduck is so impressive, especially considering the easiness in terms of browsing files! Quick Look feature lets you have a preview of a file, whereas the support for external editors helps you edit website files instantaneously. Also, there are extended features in transfer section too, such as notifications in system tray & Synchronization. Integration with system technologies also makes Cyberduck popular, like support for Finder in Mac, Windows keychain support etc.

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3. FireFTP

FireFTP is not a dedicated FTP Client, but it, instead, gets integrated with Mozilla Firefox browser! So, FireFTP may be the best choice for you when you need all the features of FTP but do not want to leave browser window for that. It is a Firefox add-on as you may see it first-hand, but FireFTP becomes a feature-rich FTP Transfer software after you’ve installed it. Instead of launching a new window, FireFTP will be available in a new Mozilla Firefox tab, with all notable features you’d expect from a typical FTP software.

Being a Mozilla add-on, FireFTP works fine in Windows, Mac OS X and Linux and offers support for various protocols, including SFTP. When it comes to the organization aspect, FireFTP has drag-and-drop support, file compression, FXP support, proxy support, timestamp synchronization, IPv6 and File Hashing. FireFTP is available in over 20 languages, but the User Interface is so simple that you’d need no sort of description to move on. It’s free, by the way.

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4. WinSCP

Considered a viable alternative to FileZilla — the standard, as we said —, WinSCP is yet another free FTP Client. This tool offers support for FTP, SFTP and WebDAV protocols and is available only for Windows PCs. Talking of the UI, this tool has one that is quite similar to the typical UI concept of Windows, offering you the accustomed-to feel when it’s time to use WinSCP. It is actually a tool that is meant for secure copying of files between two computers and it does well as a FTP Transfer software too.

Talking of the features, there are some: first, you would love the Graphical User Interface that’s pretty much simple, and then there’s integration with Windows, letting you use drag-and-drop file transfer and shortcut icons. Also, it’s a feature named Directory Synchronization, which lets you keep two directories in sync, either automatically or semi-manually. Plus, integrated text editor of WinSCP brings easier file-editing capabilities. We’d say most features of the tool are developer-oriented or are concerned with secure copying of files — so, it’s your choice to go secure or not.

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5. SmartFTP

SmartFTP is a professional FTP Client that is available in two variants, offering different levels of features in each! It is available only for Windows-based PCs and there is support for Windows 10 too. In terms of protocol support, it does support FTP, FTPS, SFTP, Amazon S3, Google Drive, OneDrive and WebDAV, making SmartFTP is an all-rounder tool in short. Other than uploading and downloading files to site, SmartFTP can be used for variety of tasks like backup, as it has some advanced and standard features to accompany. It is to be noted that protocol support is limited in the first version (Professional).

When it comes to features, SmartFTP has a lot to offer. For instance, there is an Integrated Editor that is as powerful as a developer-oriented text editor, such as syntax highlighting. Its Visual Compare feature is way too powerful, to be noted, because it can help you keep two directories in sync. In short, we can say that SmartFTP is truly a smart FTP Client with professional quality and features. Talking of pricing, SmartFTP has plans based on number of users. The basic plan of Professional version costs $59.95.

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6. Free FTP

Free FTP comes from CoffeeCup Software Inc and it is a free version of Direct FTP — which is a premium tool. Yet, as a FTP Client, Free FTP performs very well, with its minimalistic and easy-to-get-used-to interface and features to help you do that. It offers support for various protocols such as FTP, SFTP and FTPS and there’s support of HTTP as well. So, apart from the intuitive User Interface it uses, you can be confident about security of Free FTP as well.

When it comes to features of Free FTP, it’s more than satisfactory, despite the fact that you can go for premium tool for advanced features. In Free FTP, you have the support for bookmarks, easier file management through drag-and-drop and all, the status bar to give necessary information, easier archival of ZIP files etc. On top of all these, you will love the easiness of User Interface: just have a look at the screenshots, and you know how easy it is to transfer. If we are to consider all these, Free FTP offers more than what you’d expect from a free one.

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7. FlashFXP

FlashFXP is yet another premium FTP Client you can find, with a lot of professional features that are quite good when you want to manage your website in an easier manner. FlashFXP offers support for FTP, FTPS and SFTP along with its strong password encryption and other options for security. There is a thirty-day trial period and you will have to purchase FlashFXP for the rest. We would say that FlashFXP is a FTP Client that prioritizes security and integrity of the transfers you deal with.

FlashFXP has superb features to offer in almost every section; let it be performance, security, connectivity, interface or integrity of transfers. For instance, the Windows Explorer-like interface makes the transfer and sync easier while its drag-and-drop feature helps you get rid of dialogue boxes. There’s also an integrated file scheduling system along with some webmaster-oriented tools. Of course, the full feature-list of FlashFXP will excite you and you’d definitely try to use the premium tool when professionalism is your requirement. FlashFXP costs $29.95.

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8. Transmit

Transmit is a Mac-only FTP software! One of the best FTP clients you can have for your Mac, Transmit has a simpler User Interface accompanied by stunning features. Talking of protocol support, you can transfer files using FTP, SFTP protocols via Transmit and there is support for Amazon S3 and WebDAV. For improved speed, Transmit uses a Twin-Turbo engine, which claims to give speed that is 25 times faster.

When it comes to additional features, Panic has included superb features in Transmit. Twin Turbo Engine and Multi-Connection support help you transfer files with stability, while the re-imagined interface of the app is simple enough to get an idea of. In the Transfer section, you have option to set advanced server preferences and other sections. Its additional features include built-in editor, favorite button etc. Also, there are options for managing crashed/paused transfers as well. For those who like a sleek FTP client for Mac, Transmit does the job, at $34 per license.

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FOFF is the acronym of Free Open FTP Face. FOFF is a multiplatform FTP Client that works fine with Windows, Linux and BSD. Looking at the screenshots will make you say that FOFF is a truly simple FTP Client and the UI is rather best when it comes to managing files between a local directory and a remote directory.

We think that FOFF has kept that minimalism in terms of features as well. Although you have standard FTP transfer features such as the image viewer, audio player, in-built options for compression, terminal window and a common User Interface, you cannot expect a lot of professional-labelled features from FOFF. Well, being an open-source project, FOFF does the job very well, we suppose.


10. AndFTP

We’ve listed FTP clients for Windows, Mac and Linux, and we have an Android FTP Client to end our list of top 10 FTP clients. As a FTP software, AndFTP supports various protocols like FTP, FTPS, SCP and SFTP and has superb features as well. When you don’t have time to sit in front of a PC and deal with the website file management, this app will be an extremely helpful one, we bet. Noticeable features of AndFTP include resume support, custom FTP & SCP commands support, ability to open files through app in your phone or Tablet PC. When combined with satisfactory security-based features, AndFTP becomes an optimal app for those who want to use Android phone for file management. It’s a free app, to be noted.

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SEE ALSO: Top 7 GitHub Alternatives

Have you used any of these FTP Clients? Which is the favorite FTP software of yours?