"Windows secure FTP server"
Right off the bat it is important to note that CompleteFTP is a not freeware but instead a very powerful, high performance, Windows FTP server. In short, it will allow you to run a FTP server on your PC that other users can connect to and transfer files based on the permissions that you set up.
Considering the complexity of this software, the installation is refreshingly simple. Be sure to note down the admin login details that you set up during the course of the installation as you’ll need them later.
To be honest the only real decision that needs to be made during the entire process is between the three different editions of CompleteFTP: Standard, Professional or Enterprise. Each has its own set of features that can be viewed via the link during installation.
Also worth noting is that although CompleteFTP supports most versions of Windows including both the 32 and 64 bit versions of Windows XP, Vista and 7, it may require ‘Administrator permissions’ to install it on the latter two.
The main interface of the FTP server is really quite clean. On the left will be three columns containing the Protocols, Users, and Folders that are part and parcel of the server you’re running. Below those three columns is a handy Context Help bar that displays useful information about each element when you hover over it. The right side of the interface contains the properties of the element that is selected and can be used to modify its values.
All of these elements can be adjusted and resized, repositioned, or hidden accordingly.
By default the full menu will be hidden when you first launch CompleteFTP but there is a button on the upper left side that should enable it and give you access to the full array of features.
Also worth noting is the fact that the color of the interface skin can be altered to any one of the seven different presets.
Frankly speaking, CompleteFTP does live up to its name and has a very impressive feature list even in the Standard edition that includes support for FTP, SFTP, FTPS, as well as unlimited numbers of both Windows and non-Windows users.
The Professional and Enterprise editions build on these capabilities, adding features such as HTTP and HTTPS support, email notification, performance charts, advance file permissions, customization options, and even clustering – among many, many others.
Due to the fact that it offers three different editions at different price points, users can choose the one that suits their needs the most. One especially nice touch is that the 31-day trial allows you to preview any of these editions and does not limit your access to its features.
In terms of functionality, CompleteFTP really does leave nothing to be desired and its list of features speaks for itself. Still, the one possible weakness it has is that the responsiveness of the interface appears sluggish at times, particularly when the window is resized or minimized and then restored.
One of the more popular Windows-based FTP servers out there would have to be the open source FileZilla server. That being said, it doesn’t hold a candle to CompleteFTP in terms of the features and only supports FTP and FTPS. Similarly, the zFTPServer Suite has fewer features as well and requires a commercial license to unlock most of its functions anyway.
CompleteFTP is definitely one of the best Windows FTP servers out there and gives a wide array of options to its users via its three editions. The level of performance that it offers makes it worth considering if you want to run a FTP server on any Windows machine.
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