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Fetch 5.1 review

Take files on and off the web with ease

A much improved and much needed new interface

Our Verdict

This version is full of sensible improvements and sports a wonderful new interface


  • Secure firewall handling

    Much improved design

    Universal binary

    Easy site mirroring


  • No drag and drop yet

    No rename option on upload

Fetch is one of the most popular FTP clients in the Mac community, but it has long suffered from a clunky interface and cheap look and feel. Until now. From version 5.0, Fetch Softworks has revamped the app and done a great job at making it easier to use, while adding useful new features.

One problem Fetch suffered from was its ability to work around firewalls, specifically for people inside one who wanted to post to a remote server. To create a secure tunnel, Fetch now has SOCKS5 compatibility - a protocol that smooths the process. We used Fetch to post to a third-party server from behind our corporate firewall without incident.

The best improvement is the new Mac-like layout. Before, you had a mechanical looking Windows-style layout, but now all the tools have been collected into an icon bar at the top of the single panel. Yes, a single panel; Fetch has done away with the opening admin box, and now login and shortcuts are all part of the same single presentation. The progress clock, showing how far your upload has left to go, has now been replaced by a simple numerical equivalent.

Higher features have been improved, too, particularly a two-way mirror function, which will either copy a folder to a server in sequential order of file structure, or download a structure to your local Mac. This is useful for people who work with web-building applications.

However, there's still room for improvement. There's no drag- and-drop functionality yet, so you can't drag in a file and have Fetch see that as a sign you want it uploaded. Plus, you can no longer rename a file before you upload, which is annoying if files have a long name that will look ridiculous as a URL. Overall, we like the changes, and it's good to see an old Mac stalwart still with us and improving in leaps and bounds. James Ellerbeck