Top 10 FTP clients for seamless file management in 2024

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Managing files for your website, particularly when they’re large in size, can be a daunting task if approached manually. That’s where FTP (File Transfer Protocol) clients come in handy, offering a swift, reliable, and secure means of uploading, downloading, and organizing files. Let’s delve into what FTP clients are and explore the finest options available for Windows, Mac, and Linux users in 2024.

Understanding FTP clients

FTP, an acronym for File Transfer Protocol, is the mechanism by which computer files are transferred to a web host or server. An FTP client serves as the software facilitator for these operations, allowing users to efficiently upload, download, delete, copy, and edit site files through a user-friendly interface. Moreover, FTP clients typically support various file transfer protocols such as SFTP, HTTP, and HTTPS, enhancing versatility and security during file management tasks.

Benefits of using an FTP client

Utilizing an FTP client presents several advantages over traditional methods of file transfer. Notably:

  • Enhanced security
    While direct file transmission from web hosting accounts poses security risks, FTP clients mitigate such concerns, ensuring a safer transfer process.
  • Streamlined management
    With features like drag-and-drop functionality, search tools, and bookmarking capabilities, FTP clients simplify file organization and retrieval.
  • Protocol support
    Apart from FTP, leading clients often support additional protocols like SFTP, enabling seamless integration with third-party servers like Dropbox and Google Drive.
  • Automation
    The ability to automate tasks such as scheduling data transfers streamlines workflow efficiency and saves time.
  • Real-time monitoring
    Tracking file transfer progress in real-time facilitates prompt action in case of errors or interruptions, ensuring smooth operations.
  • Resilience
    Features like resume upload enable users to resume interrupted transfers without data loss, enhancing reliability.
  • Queue management
    Queueing multiple files for upload eliminates the need for manual intervention, enhancing productivity.

Top FTP Clients for 2024

After rigorous testing, we’ve curated a list of the best FTP clients tailored for Windows, Mac, and Linux users, taking into account factors like usability, features, and performance:

Selecting the right FTP client is paramount for efficient file management, regardless of your operating system. By considering factors like usability, features, and security, you can find the perfect solution to streamline your website maintenance tasks in 2024 and beyond.


  • Compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux systems
  • User-friendly interface, robust free tools Ideal
  • Suitable for all levels of expertise, particularly beneficial for WordPress website owners
  • Free, with premium options available

FileZilla stands out as a top choice among FTP clients for WordPress users, boasting compatibility with all major operating systems including Windows, Mac, and Linux. Beyond standard FTP functionality, FileZilla also supports FTPS and SFTP protocols, ensuring secure file transfers.

Configuring FileZilla is a breeze, even for novices. Users can easily filter files by name and employ simple drag-and-drop functionality to initiate transfers. With support for files up to 4GB in size and control over transfer speeds, FileZilla offers flexibility and efficiency.

The intuitive main screen features a convenient side-by-side display, allowing users to monitor transfer statuses and promptly address any issues that arise. Moreover, FileZilla streamlines file management by promptly locating and bookmarking frequently accessed files and folders, optimizing time management.

Furthermore, FileZilla facilitates simultaneous connections, empowering users to navigate folder structures and access file information with ease and privacy.

To ensure security, it’s imperative to download FileZilla exclusively from its official source, mitigating the risk of malware and viruses.

In summary, FileZilla emerges as the premier choice for a free FTP client, offering unparalleled functionality. For users seeking additional customization options and compatibility with third-party protocols such as Amazon S3 and OneDrive, FileZilla Pro is available for $19.99 per license.


  • Specifically designed for Windows operating system
  • Efficient workspace management, interactive scripting console
  • Windows users seeking a user-friendly file transfer client
  • Free of charge

For Windows users in need of a reliable FTP client, WinSCP is a standout option. This open-source software facilitates seamless file transfers between your local system and remote servers, courtesy of its intuitive dual-screen graphical interface.

WinSCP boasts support for a diverse range of transfer protocols, including SCP, SFTP, WebDAV, and S3, ensuring versatility in file transfer operations. Additionally, the software prioritizes data security by implementing file encryption protocols.

Enhancing usability, WinSCP integrates an integrated text editor, enabling users to modify text files directly within the application. The software also offers a plethora of customizable settings for managing transfer sessions, including options for opening, closing, saving, adding, and switching sessions.

One of WinSCP’s standout features is its scripting console, which empowers users to automate tasks through interactive commands. Furthermore, users can bolster file security by setting a master password to safeguard against unauthorized access.

WinSCP’s multilingual interface and comprehensive documentation cater to users worldwide, ensuring accessibility and ease of use.

While WinSCP lacks built-in customization options for shortcuts, its primary drawback lies in its exclusivity to the Windows platform, limiting cross-platform compatibility for users seeking computer-to-computer transfers.

Despite these minor limitations, WinSCP remains an attractive option for budget-conscious users, offering robust functionality at no cost.


  • Compatible with Mac and Windows systems
  • Integration with Cryptomator, seamless cloud content distribution
  • Site owners requiring multi-network file transfers
  • Free of charge

Cyberduck emerges as a top-tier FTP client catering to both Mac and Windows users. With robust support for FTP, SFTP, and integration with third-party cloud storage solutions like OpenStack Swift and Backblaze B2, Cyberduck offers unparalleled versatility in file transfer operations.

One of Cyberduck’s standout features is its client-side encryption via Cryptomator, ensuring the security of data including file names, content, and directory structures. The user-friendly interface facilitates seamless connectivity with text editors for swift file editing, while the bookmarking feature streamlines file upload and import tasks with intuitive drag-and-drop functionality.

Facilitating effortless file sharing, Cyberduck incorporates a URL generator and enables content distribution to any server through Amazon CloudFront integration. Additionally, the software supports caching to optimize file synchronization and features a quick look tool for previewing large files before downloading.

Cyberduck’s comprehensive feature set includes support for technologies such as Keychain password protection and Bonjour auto-discovery network. However, users should note that while Cyberduck is optimized for the Mac operating system, its performance on Windows may vary.

In conclusion, Cyberduck stands as a premier choice among free FTP clients, offering advanced functionalities and seamless integration with various technologies to meet the diverse needs of site owners and file transfer enthusiasts alike.


  • Compatible with both Windows and Mac operating systems
  • Sleek graphical interface, seamless integration with RSS feeds
  • Enterprises utilizing WordPress platforms
  • Premium

CuteFTP stands out as a premium FTP client tailored for users of both Mac and Windows systems. With support for multiple FTP servers, including SFTP, HTTP, and HTTPS, CuteFTP prioritizes data security with password authentication protocols.

The hallmark of CuteFTP lies in its visually appealing user interface, complemented by a color-coded HTML editor that simplifies file editing tasks. Users can effortlessly connect to new websites using the intuitive step-by-step wizard feature.

Automation capabilities further enhance productivity, enabling users to create backup scripts, synchronize sites, and monitor changes with ease. Additionally, CuteFTP streamlines file transfers with a drag-and-drop module capable of handling up to 100 files at a time.

For users managing audio content, CuteFTP offers the convenience of creating podcast RSS feeds directly on WordPress sites. Thumbnail previews for remote images add to the software’s functionality.

CuteFTP is available for purchase at $59.99 per license, with the option to upgrade to the Pro version for $89.99 per license, which includes full-year maintenance and support.

While CuteFTP carries a premium price tag, its extensive customer support and feature-rich offerings set it apart from most open-source FTP applications, making it an ideal choice for enterprises seeking reliable file management solutions.


  • Exclusively available for Mac operating system
  • Comprehensive file and media preview, efficient quick open tool
  • Small businesses seeking advanced file management capabilities
  • Premium

ForkLift proudly positions itself as one of the most sophisticated FTP clients tailored for the Mac operating system, and its extensive feature set certainly lives up to this claim.

This FTP software boasts a dual-screen graphical user interface, allowing users to seamlessly compare local and remote servers and swiftly take action when encountering matching, modified, or deleted files. It primarily supports SFTP as its file transfer protocol, while also extending compatibility to remote servers such as WebDAV, Rackspace Cloudfiles, and NFS.

ForkLift streamlines file and folder synchronization with a single mouse click, allowing users to designate favorites for quick access. The preview panel facilitates efficient file management by enabling users to view and edit file information, playback multimedia content, and inspect various document types.

Moreover, ForkLift enhances productivity with its quick-open tool, granting instant access to favorites, menu commands, and other connected devices. Renaming large batches of files is made convenient through its multi-rename preset feature.

Despite its impressive array of features, ForkLift is not available as a free FTP client. Users must purchase a license, with pricing starting at $29.55 for single-use and scaling up to $99.95 for small businesses. While the premium pricing may deter budget-conscious users, ForkLift’s powerful toolset justifies the investment for businesses seeking advanced file management capabilities.

Free FTP

  • Specifically designed for Windows
  • Rapid file transfer speeds, comprehensive history and archiving module
  • Novice website owners seeking simplicity
  • Free, with premium options available

Free FTP emerges as one of the premier FTP clients tailored for WordPress users, boasting a user-friendly interface designed for ease of use. In addition to traditional FTP servers, Free FTP offers support for a variety of protocols including SFTP and HTTP, enhancing flexibility in file transfer operations.

While Free FTP provides robust functionality out of the box, users may need to install add-ons to connect to third-party services such as Google Cloud Storage, expanding its compatibility and utility.

The client’s clean FTP activity panel offers users a comprehensive overview of transfer statuses, complete with convenient buttons for pausing and canceling transfers. Free FTP simplifies file management tasks by enabling users to add, move, and launch files directly within the program, streamlining workflow efficiency.

In the event of errors, Free FTP promptly notifies users, facilitating seamless website management. Moreover, the software’s history module logs all browsing and transfer sessions, making it effortless to locate files even if their locations are forgotten.

Notably, Free FTP’s standout feature is its quick archive tool, allowing users to instantly back up their websites into ZIP folders for added security.

While the core functionality of Free FTP meets the needs of most users, those seeking additional features can opt for its premium counterpart, Direct FTP, priced at $39 per license. Direct FTP offers enhancements such as an image viewer, HTML editor, and folder bookmarks, catering to users with more advanced requirements.

Commander One

  • Exclusively available for Mac
  • Versatile multi-function manager, customizable hotkey settings
  • Mac users proficient in file transfer operations
  • Premium

Commander One stands out as an exceptionally intuitive FTP solution, earning acclaim from Mac users for its seamless functionality. With Commander One, users gain access to a comprehensive array of network and cloud servers, including FTP, SFTP, WebDAV, and Amazon S3, all conveniently consolidated into one unified platform. Moreover, Commander One prioritizes data security by encrypting all transferred data, ensuring peace of mind during file transfers.

Equipped with essential file management functionalities, Commander One empowers users to effortlessly view, delete, create files, and copy files between servers with ease. The file manager offers enhanced control over documents, featuring options to view hidden files, work with multiple files across various tabs, and access favorite folders seamlessly.

Furthermore, users can streamline workflow efficiency by queuing file operations and assigning customizable hotkeys for instant actions. Additional tools such as ZIP support, document and media viewers, and local computer network access further augment the software’s utility.

While the free version of Commander One provides fundamental file management capabilities, opting for a PRO subscription unlocks a more comprehensive feature set, including a terminal emulator and process viewer.

Commander One offers three subscription plans to cater to varying user needs: Personal, priced at $29 per license, Team, accommodating up to five Mac computers at $99 per license, and Company, suitable for 50 Mac computers at $149.99 per license. These flexible pricing options ensure that users can select the plan that best aligns with their requirements and budget constraints.


  • Exclusively designed for Mac users
  • Customizable user interface, advanced and secure file synchronization
  • Site owners juggling multiple tasks
  • Premium

Transmit stands as a dependable choice among FTP clients for Mac users, renowned for its wealth of customization options catering to both novice and experienced users alike.

The latest iteration, Transmit 5, seamlessly connects users to FTP, SFTP, and an array of cloud services ranging from Google Drive to Amazon S3. Its sleek user interface conceals a robust set of built-in tools designed to execute various FTP functions, including item inspection, batch file renaming, and server key generation for enhanced security.

A standout feature of Transmit is its File Sync capability, facilitating local-to-local and remote-to-remote synchronization, bolstered by Panic Sync for data encryption and security. Transmit boasts impressive file transfer speeds, even for large files, thanks to its optimized performance.

The software’s intelligent searching system simplifies the location of complex folders, while the dual-panel activity view provides real-time tracking of transfer progress.

Regrettably, Transmit is not compatible with Windows and Linux systems, limiting its accessibility to Mac users exclusively. Priced at $45 per license, Transmit offers a premium FTP client experience. Users interested in trying out the software before committing to a purchase can download the free trial version.


  • Specifically designed for Windows
  • Comprehensive file editing tools, extensive knowledge base directory
  • Windows users seeking robust FTP functionality with reliable customer support
  • Freemium

For Windows users seeking an efficient FTP client compatible with the latest Windows versions, SmartFTP presents a compelling option. This versatile FTP client facilitates seamless connections between local computers and internet servers for efficient file transfers. SmartFTP supports a wide range of protocols, including SFTP, WebDAV, OneDrive, and Terminal Client, ensuring compatibility with diverse server environments.

The administrator panel boasts intuitive menu tabs for streamlined navigation, facilitating the uploading of files of various sizes, from videos to movie clips. SmartFTP further enhances productivity with its built-in text editor, equipped with handy tools like a spell checker, find and replace function, and indicator bar to simplify file editing tasks.

One of SmartFTP’s standout features is its comprehensive support system, which includes a dedicated section for tutorials and a knowledge base directory containing answers to frequently asked questions, ensuring users have access to helpful resources at their fingertips.

Users can opt to install the free version of SmartFTP or choose from three premium plans: Professional, priced at $39.99 per year, Ultimate, priced at $69.99 per year, and Enterprise, priced at $149.99 per year. These tiered pricing options cater to users with varying requirements and budget constraints, ensuring flexibility and affordability.

WS_FTP Professional

  • Specifically designed for Windows
  • Advanced industry-grade security, integrated search functionality
  • Business owners managing websites
  • Premium

WS_FTP Professional stands out as the go-to FTP client for Windows users seeking unparalleled security for their file transfers. This Windows-compatible FTP client employs cutting-edge encryption technologies to safeguard files at the highest levels.

Supporting a multitude of protocols, including SSH, SSL, HTTP/S, and SFTP, WS_FTP Professional ensures seamless and secure file transmission across various networks.

The integrated search functionality sets WS_FTP Professional apart, integrating Google, Copernic, and Windows desktop search engines into a single, intuitive panel. This all-in-one solution simplifies file location, transfer, and server connectivity, allowing users to filter searches based on parameters such as file type, size, and date.

Moreover, WS_FTP Professional offers a host of additional features to enhance workflow efficiency, including administrative rules for scheduling post-transfer actions, folder archiving capabilities, email notifications, site backup functionality, and virtual synchronization across devices, drives, and servers.

Priced as a premium FTP client, WS_FTP Professional offers flexible licensing options ranging from $49.95 per license to $390 for five licenses. Each plan includes a comprehensive warranty, ongoing support, automation technology, and internet file exchange capabilities. Additionally, users can take advantage of a 30-day free trial to test the software’s capabilities before committing to a purchase.

An FTP client simplifies the transfer and organization of files across networks effortlessly.

When seeking the optimal FTP client, it’s essential to consider both compatibility and functionality in alignment with your website requirements.

If you’re undecided on which one to opt for, here are our top recommendations for the best FTP clients across various operating systems, including Windows, Mac, and others:

  • FileZilla: A user-friendly FTP client offering essential features like search and bookmarking, ideal for smoothing out your file transfers, and it’s completely free.
  • Cyberduck: Available for both Windows and Mac, Cyberduck provides robust services such as encrypted transfers and cloud distribution, all at no cost.
  • Transmit: Specifically designed for Mac, Transmit stands out as a swift FTP client offering extensive synchronization options at an affordable price point.

We trust that this guide has assisted you in identifying the ideal FTP client for your website needs. Should you require further information or wish to share feedback, please don’t hesitate to reach out by leaving a comment below.