Light and Fast Download Accelerator for Linux

Posted by jun auza On 4/03/2010
Light and Fast Download Accelerator for Linux: Some of you may have used a download accelerator through a browser add-on but are not contented with the download speed gain. Perhaps you should try a light and fast standalone and desktop-based download manager that could help give considerable increase in download speed.

Let me introduce you to Axel. A light and fast download accelerator with both a command line and Graphical User Interface (GUI).

Axel is able to accelerate your downloads by using more than one HTTP/FTP connection with each connection transfers its own, individual, part of the file. It can also use multiple mirrors per download.

Axel in action

To download and install Axel, look for it using your distro package manager. You can also download it directly from HERE. If using Ubuntu, you can get it via the Ubuntu Software Center, Synaptic Package Manager, or via the command line:

$ sudo apt-get install axel

To use Axel from the Linux terminal, simply type "axel" followed by the URL or location of the file that you would like to download:

$ axel http://downloadlink.org/file.iso

The downloaded file will be placed at your home folder by default.


With Axel, you have the option to set the maximum speed, maximum number of connections, and search for mirrors and download from servers among others. Like if you want to save some bandwidth and keep the average speed of let's say around 4444660 bytes per second, you can set it up this way:

$ axel -s 4444660 http://downloadlink.org/file.iso

A QT based graphical front-end for Axel called Axel-Kapt can also be installed.


However, while using Axel-Kapt inside Ubuntu 10.04 "Karmic Koala" (Beta), I find it buggy and would crash when I start the download. But since I want to keep it really light, I'm just happy using Axel from the command line and don't wish for a better GUI front-end.

Do you know of other light and fast download accelerator for Linux that perhaps I could try also?

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