WordPress is an excellent platform for blogging or hosting a website. However, it has evolved into much more than that. WordPress is now a powerful content management system which powers over 27% of the web, and thanks to a few external plugins, can handle a variety of different file download needs.

The native WordPress user interface does have the ability to manage file downloads. However, this is not the easiest nor most efficient way to manage files. Plus, the native function doesn’t have half the features of many of the new and popular WordPress download manager plugins now available to help you manage files.

Depending on your needs, you can easily add password protections, track the number of downloads, organize files, and stop unregistered users from accessing files. You can also use a file download plugin to track file revisions and even collaborate with a team. And, of course, you can use file management plugins to manage and sell digital downloads!

WordPress Download Manager Plugins Index

So depending on your specific goals and needs, there are a variety of both free and premium WordPress plugins that can handle any file download management needs.

1. WordPress Download Manager (free)

WordPress download manager plugin

The free version of WordPress Download Manager includes password protection, limited viewing, and works on multiple domains.  The password protection package allows users to protect a full package of files, or each specific file in a package by using passwords. It’s a simple, easy-to-use download manager. It is also one of the most actively updated WordPress download manager plugins. As of writing this it currently has 100,000+ active installs with a 4 out of 5-star rating.

2. WP-Download Manager (free)

WP-DownloadManager plugin

WP-DownloadManager is a simple download manager plugin developed by Lester Chan. It doesn’t have a long list of features but is still a viable option for webmasters who don’t need/want all the bells and whistles. As of writing this it currently has 10,000+ active installs with a rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars.

3. WordPress Download Monitor (free)

Download Monitor plugin

Download Monitor has an intuitive UI that allows you to easily upload and manage downloadable files and insert download links to files in posts. The goal of Download Monitor is to help users keep files organized and to provide a way to track files. As of writing this it currently has 90,000+ active installs with a 4.4 out of 5-star rating.

Features of the plugin include:

  • Tracks download counts and logs user download attempts
  • Member-only downloads
  • Quick-add panel for adding files while you are editing posts
  • Add multiple file versions to downloads
  • Has shortcodes to output downloads in different formats including plain text links, buttons and boxes

It also has premium extensions available, such as Email-Lock, which allows you to require a user to enter their email address before they are able to download the file.

4. Easy Digital Downloads (free)

Easy Digital Downloads plugin

Easy Digital Downloads is primarily an e-commerce solution for any type of digital download, but it can also manage multiple file downloads per downloaded product. This makes it a great option if you have different prices for multiple products or have bundled products. It comes with PayPal and Manual as the default payment options, but others can be added for a fee. If you want to learn more about Easy Digital Downloads here is this comprehensive guide. It currently has 60,000+ active installs with a 4.8 out of 5-star rating.

Features of the plugin pertaining to file downloads include:

  • Cart system for purchasing multiple downloads at once
  • User purchase history and ability to re-download files
  • Multiple files per downloadable product

5. WooCommerce (free)

WooCommerce plugin

WooCommerce is a free eCommerce plugin that allows you to sell anything, beautifully. Built to integrate seamlessly with WordPress, WooCommerce is one of the world’s favorite eCommerce solution that gives both store owners and developers complete control. As of writing this it currently has 3+ million active installs with 4.6 out of 5-star rating. With the newer versions of WooCommerce you can now manage downloadable and virtual products.

Make sure to check out our in-depth WooCommerce tutorial.

6. Delightful Downloads (free)

Delightful Downloads plugin

Delightful Downloads is a downloads manager for WordPress that allows you to easily add download links, buttons and download information to posts, pages and widget areas. You can then track your download statistics from right within the WordPress dashboard. This is developed by Ashley Rich, on the team over at Delicious Brains. It currently has 10,000+ active installs with a 4.7 out of 5 star rating.

Features of the plugin include:

  • File upload via the WordPress admin area.
  • Shortcodes to display download links, buttons and download the information within posts, pages and widget areas.
  • Categorize and tag downloads.
  • Download statistics tracked within the WordPress dashboard area.
  • Password protected files.

7. Lana Downloads Manager (free)

Lana Downloads Manager plugin

The Lana Downloads Manager plugin is super simple and free. It allows the management of local files via WP upload and remote files. If you are looking for something basic and lightweight, this works great.

Features of the plugin include:

  • Counter system
  • Log system

8. WordPress Download Manager Pro (premium)

WordPress Download Manager pro plugin

The Pro version of WordPress Download Manager has three separate levels: Pro, Business, and Developer. The major difference is the number of domains allowed. The Pro version ($45) only allows for one domain, the Business ($125) allows up to five, and the Developer ($210) version supports numerous domains.

The Pro version has very extensive features and capabilities, especially when compared to the free version:

  • Download stats
  • Personalized URLs
  • Email lock
  • Bulk import
  • Multi-file package
  • Individual file info
  • Multiple passwords

9. WP-Filebase Pro (premium)

WP-Filebase Pro plugin

The premium version of WP-Filebase, the Pro version includes all features found in the free version plus the following:

  • Secondary categories for files
  • File detail pages
  • FTP, Dropbox & Amazon S3 sync
  • Extended permissions & file passwords
  • Embedded upload forms
  • PDF thumbnails and indexing
  • Improved batch import & syncing

There are three different licensing options, including the Personal License ($59) which licenses two sites, the Freelancer License ($79) which licenses up to five sites, and the Business License ($199) which has no limitations on the number of sites. All offer free support and updates for one year. This is a great option if you need to allow users to download files from Dropbox, Amazon S3, Google Drive or WebDav.

10. File Manager Plugin for WordPress (premium)

File Manager plugin for WordPress

The File Manager Plugin for WordPress is quite powerful and has a great user interface. The regular license is $15, while the extended license will set you back $75. Core features include:

  • File management
  • Image editor
  • Windows style GUI
  • Folder access control
  • User access control
  • Cross-browser compatible

11. Groups File Access WordPress Plugin (premium)

Groups File Access WordPress plugin

The Groups File Access WordPress plugin provides file download links only for authorized users. All other access to files is restricted, depending on the user’s group membership. The regular license is $15, while the extended license is $75.

Features of the plugin include:

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  • Restrict access to downloads to authorized user groups
  • Limited or unlimited number of downloads per user
  • Full multisite support (WordPress network installations)
  • File management area
  • Upload files via FTP and bulk import
  • Key authentication file access
  • File access notifications (customizable)
  • Flexible shortcodes

12. WordPress File Centre (premium)

WordPress File Center plugin

WordPress File Center costs the same as the previous premium plugins.

Features of the plugin include:

  • The ability to give users a login to download files
  • Manage files from the admin panel
  • Secure download for all clients
  • Stop unwanted users from accessing files

13. CM Download Manager (free + premium)

CM Download Manager plugin

The CM Download Manager plugin enables you to upload, manage, track and support documents or files in a directory listing structure for others to use and comment. They do have a free version, but it is very limited. However, the premium version has a lot of features!

Features of the plugin include:

  • Download categories
  • Voting
  • View counts
  • Internal search
  • User notifications and permissions
  • Password protected
  • Upload restrictions and moderation
  • Multisite support
  • Multiple file uploads
  • Shortcodes and log statistics

Choosing the Right WordPress Download Manager Plugins

Depending on your specific needs, there’s pretty much a WordPress download manager plugin for every scenario. With capabilities ranging from group collaboration, download tracking, and even simple file organization, you can be sure that you’ll find the file management plugin that is right for you.

Did we miss any important ones? If so, let us know below in the comments.