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Back in the days of IE4/5 and Netscape Navigator still being around, downloading of files > 2mb could become quite an ordeal. Finding your modem kicking you offline because someone has tried to make an outgoing phone call or just because...

Anyway to solve this problem when downloading larger files you could install a download manager which would manage the download and if it lost connection half way through, just pick it back up and resume it. So even if it took 3 hours filled with disconnection woes, you would still end up with the file at the end of the day.

Now enter the present day, you try to download a 100mb file and its over within a few minutes... however those of us on mobile internet connections that are up and down more than a ship in rough seas are stuck with the same problem we faced over 10 years ago.

Currently I am trying to download a 100mb file on my 3g network and 3 times I have gotten to over 70% and it then loses signal or something and ruins the download, then it tells me to retry, which goes back to the start of the download...

At least with firefox if this happens you can download again, pause it and rename the broken file to xxxx.part and remove the current part allowing you to continue as if nothing had happened... however it seems a bit odd that browsers dont just do this for you... is there some patent around them doing this?

From a simplistic point of view, isnt it just a case of checking what byte you are up to within the file and just resume from that index in the stream?

Was just wondering why this problem hasnt been solved yet... (without having to download an external program to do so)

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This is not the type of question for SU. Aside from that... keep in mind that many web/ftp servers still seem to not be set up, or able, to allow resuming an interrupted download; so where you're getting it from can/will determine if you can resume after a connection drop regardless of the chosen download manager. –  techie007 Aug 25 '11 at 14:03
    
I tend to leave a comment on questions I have voted to close, but techie007 has already said why. Can you not just use FireFox? –  tombull89 Aug 25 '11 at 14:08
    
Not all web servers support resuming, so you're only solving about half of the problem with this. –  dannysauer Aug 25 '11 at 14:58
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closed as not constructive by Breakthrough, techie007, ChrisF, tombull89, music2myear Aug 25 '11 at 14:06

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1 Answer

The first reasons that come to mind are software bloat and code bloat. Everyone wants Firefox to use less and less RAM, but they want more and more features... That's not the way things work, my friend.

You have to use the right tool for the right job. Download managers are specialized pieces of software to accomplish what you seek for a variety of internet protocols and web APIs. There's a lot more to consider rather then "just looking at the last byte downloaded and continuing".

Is the file downloaded sequentially? Is the existing file segment valid? How do you know, or how can you verify it? How can you determine that the place you resumed downloading at is the proper place? Programming a download manager is far from a trivial task, and introduces many complexities most users would rather have in a separate application rather then being forced into and bundled with their web browser.

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Saying that "... most users would rather have a separate application..." is VERY subjective. For what it is worth, I would want it the other way. –  Rabarberski Aug 25 '11 at 14:14
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@Rababerski: Sure. It's called Chrome OS. –  Hello71 Aug 25 '11 at 14:18
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