How to Wirelessly Transfer Android Files to a Linux Desktop

Smartphone with a Linux tux logo and a laptop
Alberto Garcia Guillen/Shutterstock

Do you have an Android phone and a Linux desktop? You can transfer files wirelessly, send texts from your PC, and control your phone from your computer. It’s like Windows 10’s Your Phone app for Linux!

Android and Linux Integration

KDE Connect is a slick and richly featured piece of software that integrates your Android handset right into your KDE desktop environment.

It provides many features such as two-way notifications between your phone and computer, wireless transfer of files in both directions, and the sending of SMS texts from your computer. KDE Connect is an integral part of the KDE desktop environment.

GSConnect is a version of the software developed for the GNOME desktop environment. It is built as a GNOME extension. GNOME users must install GSConnect.

To take care of the Android side of things, KDE and GNOME users alike must install and use the KDE Connect Android app.

The computer you are going to pair your Android phone to does not have to be using Wi-Fi. It can be plugged into the network using an ethernet cable. It must be on the same network as your handset, but that’s the only requirement.

The Installation Steps

Installing GSConnect is straightforward, but the steps must be followed in the correct order.

  1. Install the KDE Connect app on your Android phone.
  2. If you’re using Google Chrome, install the chrome-gnome-shell Linux software.
  3. Configure Chrome or Firefox to integrate with the GNOME shell.
  4. Use Chrome or Firefox to install the GSConnect GNOME extension.
  5. Pair your Android handset to your KDE or GNOME desktop environment.

KDE users only need to do the first and last steps. GNOME users who are using Firefox as their browser do not need to do step two.

Installing the Android App

On your Android handset, open the Play Store and search for “KDE Connect.” When the app has been found, click the green “Install” button.

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