Tip: if you download from China, use a download manager

So, I received a new smartphone today which I bought a couple of weeks ago. It is a Xiaomi Mi 4C which I purchased directly in China after carefully evaluating my options. Since I did not want a large device, I had high hopes initially for the new Nexus 5x but it did not turn out to be what I wanted.

I made the decision long ago not to buy flagship smartphones anymore as it is just not worth it in my opinion. The main idea was to root it and install a mod afterwards to get better control of the device.

The very first thing that I wanted to do was to flash the latest Developer Rom on the device to prepare the device for the installation of custom mods.

One of the core benefits of installing a Developer ROM on the device is that these versions have root automatically.

mod apk

Anyway, the Developer ROM has a size of 730 Megabytes; not much if you are used to download files with 50 Mbit.

And so I tried to download the ROM from the official Chinese website in Chrome and Firefox. Downloads were really slow, a couple of Kiloybtes tops. While I have no issues leaving the PC on until downloads finish, it turned out that downloads would be canceled regularly as well as the connection was quite unstable.

slow downloads china

After trying several times to get the file to download, I decided to use a download manager instead. Well, first I tried to find a mirror server that would provide me with better download speeds.

Since there seemed none available, I decided to give Free Download Manager a try. Lo and behold, the speed increased to acceptable 1500 KB/s so that the file was on my PC in a matter of minutes instead of days (if at all).

download from china

Free Download Manager establishes several connections to the server hosting the ROM file which speeds up the download significantly if the server supports the operation and resume. The server that hosted the ROM file did support these which resulted in the speed boost.

Closing Words

I had no use for download managers in the past ten or so years thanks to a fast Internet connection up until now. I tried other downloads located on Chinese servers just to see how fast, or slow, they would be, and it turns out that most downloads from China are rather slow.

It is worth a shot in my opinion if you are experiencing slow downloads from servers. They don’t need to be located in China necessarily, as you may see improvements regardless of server location provided that they support resume and don’t limit the number of connections.


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Tip: if you download from China, use a download manager


Martin Brinkmann


Find out how to speed up file downloads significantly if they are slow or unstable in your web browser of choice.

About Martin Brinkmann

Martin Brinkmann is a journalist from Germany who founded Ghacks Technology News Back in 2005. He is passionate about all things tech and knows the Internet and computers like the back of his hand. You can follow Martin on Facebook, Twitter or Google+

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