This just in: SmartFTP is like a million times better than FileZilla. And it’s like 900,000 times better than LeechFTP.

I used FileZilla over LeechFTP but I never really liked FileZilla. Leech is outdated. FZ’s user interface was effective but ugly. I appreciated that it was open-source, and I enthusiastically hoped that that would mean it was the best product available.

Meanwhile I’m stuck on dial-up. My current site host, PowWeb, allows only two simultaneous FTP transfers. Last weekend I upgraded WordPress from 1.5.1 to via LeechFTP on a cable modem, and it was more than satisfactory. I can only assume that using FZ over a cable modem would also have been acceptable. But using these two programs over dial-up gets bogged down not necessarily by the transfer speed, but the handshaking that goes on with the server.

Somehow, SmartFTP expediates the handshaking to a degree that leaves me flabbergasted. Now don’t get me wrong — the fact that I have to wait to upload 2MB of stuff keeps me firmly planted in my dial-up reality. But the annoying wait of a few seconds or even several minutes between files (this is what ultimately made me find my third FTP client in a month) seems to have completely disappeared.

I don’t know how they do it, but they got me to switch.