March 16, 2018

KGet Is Awesome And Why You Should Use It

At one time, download managers were all the rage. They allowed an easy way to manage and monitor downloads from a wide variety of locations on the Interwebz. Be it photos, apps, music, code from repositories, chunks of text, or perhaps a whole web page's contents, a good download manager can really be handy.

But, for some reason, they seem to have fallen out of favor these days. I suspect many readers have never heard of KGet, let alone use it as part of their daily workflow. Perhaps it's because the download functionality of modern browsers have really evolved? No. I'd say this hasn't really happened yet. The save dialogues of modern web browsers have not really changed much at all over the last several years.

KGet's Main Window of Awesome

The status-quo is to select an individual item to download, right-click on it, and open the save dialog box, whereby you navigate your folder structure and tell the browser where to save it. Wash-Rinse-Repeat. Hardly efficient, right? Surely there is a better way to do this. What if  one downloads a lot of files?

KGet can be easily configured to monitor
your clipboard using regular expressions
to trigger a KGet save event. Kool!

What if:
  • One downloads pictures off the Internet for their blog?
  • One regularly downloads the latest mainline kernels and wants them always in a special folder?
  • What if one wants an easy way to download releases from Github without the command line to a special development folder / environment?
  • Wants an easy way to download every picture from a certain webpage? Or a whole website?
    • It's alright all you chronic cat meme lovers, we know who you are!
  • What if one wants to download many large files at once, and have them each going to different destinations on the disk of choice?
  • What if one wants to easily drag and drop individual files to a static icon on their desktop, thereby triggering the powerful download manager's features?
  • What if one could harness the power of monitoring their own clipboard contents for defined expressions that would trigger prompting KGet to invoke saving to a particular group? 

I'm sure there are many more use-cases one could come up with as to why you might want to use such a powerful tool in your day-to-day workflow. Feel free to post yours in the comment section below!

Using Groups

One of the most useful aspects of KGet is the ability to define groups, which includes both configuring the way downloads are handled and at what speed, and the default directory they download to. Think about it - never having to manually select a save location again! Or worrying about large downloads timing out or using all your valuable bandwidth! You can even use a custom icon for each group you define, as shown in the Dog Pics For Instagram example in the picture below. So you can tell at a glance what group you need to select. Handy if you have a lot of groups.

Defining and using groups are the true
KGet power-trip

Dedicated KGet Drag / Drop Icon

Another nice touch is the option to add a dedicated icon that sits on your desktop, and above any open applications you might have open, simply waiting for you to drag a download link, picture, or whatever over it to prompt KGet into action.

KGet's target widget, waiting for you patiently
on the desktop
As far as download managers go, KGet has really stood the test of time well. There are, of course, many other options here - native apps, browser plugins, etc. are all available for your consideration. However KGet's integration, configurability, and raw power via Groups really make it stand out.

Should you use it? Well, if you regularly download images, links, or files from the 'net and want an easy and intuitive way to manage, control, and monitor them, then your answer is, of course, a resounding YES! 

Bonus Tip

Right-clicking a file in Firefox can send easily to KGet

Not that it's needed, but there is also a 'Download with KGet' Firefox add-on that adds right-click send to KGet functionality thanks to adding KGet to the context menu. Great if that fits into your particular workflow!

So what do you think? Maybe you can see uses for a download manager like KGet that you hadn't thought of before. Maybe you never knew it existed at all?! Let us know your thoughts.


- KGet Homepage (Very sparse and unworthy!)
- KGet on Userbase (Better)
- Dowload with KGet add-on for Firefox

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