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Plugin Review: WordPress Download Manager

Posted on by in Blog

Today I’m going to be taking a look at a plugin I came across called WordPress Download Manger. Based on it’s description in the WordPress.org Plugin Directory, this plugin’s purpose is to help you manage, track, and control file downloads from your WordPress site. Since I’ve been looking for an easy way to do just that, I thought I’d give this plugin a test drive and let you all know what I found out.

WordPress Download Manager Installation

As with any WordPress Plugin, I first went to the Plugin Directory and downloaded the WordPress Download Manager’s zipped file. I then got into my WordPress admin went to Plugins > Add New > Upload and Installed the plugin.

WDM-Installation

WordPress Download Manager Configuration

Upon activation, a new File Manager Menu appeared in my side bar.

WDM-NewMenu

The first thing I did was poke around and see what was what. I noticed they have a screen for managing your downloads, creating download categories, adjusting settings, and of course adding new files/packages.

The settings I left as there were.

WDM-Settings

I then moved on to Categories and added a few that seemed to make sense.

WDM-Categories

After that I went to the Add New File section, because I figured I won’t have anything to manage unless I add some content. Unfortunately this is where things started going downhill for me. As you can see, I created a new package and attempted to upload a zipped file of a single album of music. The file size was approximately 50mb – so nothing excessive. I tried multiple times to upload different file types and sizes to no avail. This was particularly frustrating as each upload attempt took more than 10 minutes – which I thought was way too long. I’m not on dial-up or anything here.

WDM-NewDownloadPackage

As you can see, my manager remained empty.

WDM-ManagerScreen

Here’s what it’s supposed to look like after you have some content in it.

WDM-SuccessfulManagerScreen

WordPress Download Manager Implementation

If this plugin would have worked for me, this is supposed to be what the download would look like from my site reader/user’s perspective.

WDM-Implementation

In Conclusion

It’s really hard for me to recommend this plugin right now. I was pretty disappointed in its performance given it’s high rating in the directory (4 out of 5 stars) and the fact that it claims to be compatible with the latest version of WordPress 3.4.1. When I clicked on the Support tab after having a lot of trouble myself, I saw that there was a support ticket saying that the plugin is broken in WordPress 3.4 and up. Since I’m running WordPress 3.4.1 I’m pretty much out of luck. Hopefully I can revisit this when they update their plugin. For now, if you don’t have the latest version of WordPress and this functionality is something you want, install it and don’t upgrade your WordPress software until this plugin works on the latest version. Otherwise, avoid it.

Download Link: WordPress Download Manager

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Comments (2)

Comment by Wolf says:

Hi Berrada,

I totally agree with you. I haven’t purchased the “PRO” version: the free one was enought to make me dumb!

Do you want to know what I think about? It is the bigger fake I’ve ever seen! Over 250k downloads of free version and thousands installations of “PRO” version () do not get along with bugs that should have been corrected since the first update!

I worked on the source code of free version fixing some ridiculous bugs but after 24 hours I said stop! It is like opening a huge can of Worms!

You can search on the Internet what people say about their customer service.

There is an honest review about WordPress Download Manager Plugin here: http://www.takemc.com/2013/03/11/wordpress-download-manager-plugin-review/

The only discordant note: It is written in Italian.

Comment by berrada says:

The code of this plugin is simply hideous. I don’t recommend this plugin to anyone. i spent 53$ for the pro version, and i will regret it till the end of my life i think. The new version that should work with wp 3.5 cn slow down your website by 200%, it can break your theme and other plugins.
I never seen before such a tsunami caused by a single plugin.
But it seems that the free version work better than the pro one.
Anyway if you need a free plugin to manage download i can only recommend s2member, you will not have the viral stuff: like to download, email signup to download etc… but at least it’s robust plugin and it use a clean code.

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