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Transmit 3 review

Verdict:

This new version places it far ahead of any other FTP client on any other platform

Review Date: 5 Apr 2005

Price when reviewed:

Reviewed By: Keith Martin

Our Rating 5 stars out of 5

Transmit, the popular FTP program from Panic, has been upgraded to version 3, and the range of features and attention to detail look set to make this a must-have utility.

At first glance, it doesn't appear to be that different from the previous version. However, the traditional server login screen can be switched to the new 'All Favorites' panel, which lists 'collections' of stored destinations. These collections cover iDisk, Rendezvous-found servers (those within your local network), a history list of recently visited places, and a Favorites folder. You can even add further folders to group your different servers however you like. Double-clicking a stored favourite makes the connection.

iDisk users, rejoice: Transmit now works with WebDAV and makes iDisk access an absolute snip. True, you can still use the Finder for this, but Finder iDisk speeds can be so bad that posting your data seems more efficient. In contrast, Transmit makes iDisk file transfers run much faster.

Even if you never perform FTP transfers, this alone makes it worth the asking price. For those who do, as well as FTP and the new WebDAV, Transmit 3's support for SFTP and TLS/SSL give a greater choice of secure connections. When connected, you can browse your remote servers in the list view or using OS X-style columns. This new view style presents a clear overview of a remote server and makes navigating the different directories a breeze.

Drawers are used to very good effect in Transmit, providing quick access to different feature sets without cluttering up the main display. You can preview files in the Preview drawer, and zoom graphic previews using a slider. The Transcript drawer shows the full technical details of the communications between Transmit and the FTP client, and the Queue drawer manages multiple and queued transfers.

Finally, there's the new Sidebar drawer, which acts very much like the navigation sidebar in OS X's Finder windows, giving quick access to your local and mounted network volumes and, in the 'Your Stuff' section, important folders within your Mac. There's a 'Their Stuff' section as well. When you're logged in to a site, drag a remote folder into this section and you'll have a bookmark-style shortcut to that place ready for use whenever you log back into the site.

As well as opening new Transmit connection windows, you can have multiple tabs within single windows, and the new server-to-server transfer ability can even be performed between tabs. Text-based files can be edited directly using Transmit's built-in text editor or passed to third-party editors such as BBEdit for heavy-duty work.

For the last eight years, Transmit has been regarded as one of the best, most Mac-like FTP applications around, and this new version places it far ahead of any other FTP client on any other platform. After putting it through its paces, we could think of only one word to describe Transmit 3: perfect.

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