Ares is a free open source file sharing program that enables users to share any digital file including images, audio, video, software, documents, etc. After a very long time running on 1.9.x versions the release of Ares 2.0.1 five days ago was a welcome upgrade.
Among the most noticeable changes are the GUI, which by default looks like the program developers just recently decided that appearance should matter also. Even with this neat layout it doesn’t seam to eat into the memory (which I was afraid of I must admit – suddenly getting one of those Vista associations…), and even though I’m connected from behind a very aggressive firewall I was online in a few seconds.
It’s almost scary how fast you will find and grab media, and downloads start almost immediately. You get information about quality, size, resolution etc. and can even preview any media with the built-in media player before completing a download, which may save you a lot of time in case a file is damaged or the content are of low quality.
You decide which folders to share, and where your downloads will go. It even supports Torrents, so this will act as your all-in-one file sharing application. As far as I can tell (after using Ares for 2 years almost) it’s very secure and (given you have some computer knowledge and common sense) will cause no harm on your system whatsoever. Downloads can off course contain viruses, but then again you should always scan things you’ve received over the Net.
The features are so easy to get used to that you will never look for the manual (even though some people always do) and setting up your defaults are done in minutes. Connecting is automated, so be patient if it takes a while sometimes. This is merely caused by your local firewall which needs to allow (or overlook…) your new P2P.
Please note that P2P makes it extremely easy to share material that might be copyrighted, so use your common sense and try to stay in the grey area at least…