How do I transfer files from Android cellphone


I have an Android cellphone that I connect to my UbuntuMATE 18.04
computer via USB tethering, and, use that for accessing the WWW on
that computer.

On my cellphone, I have a number of image files (screenshots) that I
want to transfer to the computer.

Rather than attaching each file to a gmail email message composed on
the cellphone, and, sending a copy of the file, for downloading to the
computer, how do I direcly transfer the files?

I have searched using google, and, the closest that I found to an
answer, states that, upon connecting an Android cellphone to a
computer, via USB, a window automatically pops up on the cellphone,
with an option for MTP file transfer. This does not happen with my

The cellphone does not show as a storage device in the caja file
manager, for cut/copy and paste file transfers.

So, how do I transfer files from my cellphone to my computer, when the
cellphone is connected to the computer via USB?

Thank you in anticipation.


Re: How do I transfer files from Android cellphone

By Karl Auer at 08/10/2019 - 07:59

On Sat, 2019-08-10 at 18:14 +0800, Bret Busby wrote:
Hey Bret

The phone can be different USB devices - it can be a modem or a memory
stick, a "media device" (MTP) or a camera (PTP). Some phone can be even
more things. Generally you can choose in Settings what you want the
connected phone to be; the commonest default is for it to be a memory

If you use the phone as a modem (USB tethering), you can't
simultaneously use it as any other USB device (except that it might be
able to charge at the same time).

So provided you can do without the Internet for a bit, go into Settings
and turn off the USB tethering. The phone will typically revert to
being a memory stick by default. It might give you other options, like
MTP and PTP, just leave them be. Mine works fine for USB file transfer
with "MTP" selected.

Depending on your Linux setup, when you turn off tethering the phone
should show up just as if you had plugged in a USB memory stick. If it
doesn't, try unplugging and re-plugging the USB cable. Or do whatever
you usually do to mount and use the contents of a USB memory stick.

When you are done, turn tethering back on to get back to the Internet.

Regards, K.

PS: Just for fun, try plugging USB devices into the phone - most
Android phones will happily recognise mice, keyboards, USB memory
sticks and so on. You might need an adapter as most phones have USB-C
or micro-USB rather than the USB-A on most PC devices.

Re: How do I transfer files from Android cellphone

By Bret Busby at 08/10/2019 - 08:35

On 10/08/2019, Karl Auer < ... at biplane dot> wrote:

Thank you for that.

I should probably have initially stated that the cellphone is a
Motorola g6 Play, running Android v9.

Using the above, as a guide, below is the procedure that I followed (I
hope that it is portrayed sufficiently clearly)

First, I switched off the USB tethering. Then, ...

"Settings" ->
"Connected devices" -> "USB" selected (under heading "Currently connected")
"USB preferences" ->
"Use USB for"
("No data transfer" checked by default; unchecked, then
"File transfer" checked)

And the caja file manager then automatically opened a new window for
the cellphone file directory hierarchy, as if I had inserted a USB
thumb drive (which, I assume, was emulated), and I then went to the
particular images directory (Screenshots), and cut and pasted the
files that I wanted transferred, and the transfer was pretty much

I then stepped back through the procedure, reverting to the previous settings.

I have set this out here, to both show that the problem is solved,
and, included the steps, in case someone else, with the same Android
version, wants to know how to do this.

Thank you for your help.

Re: How do I transfer files from Android cellphone

By Volker Wysk at 08/10/2019 - 07:29

Am Samstag, den 10.08.2019, 18:14 +0800 schrieb Bret Busby:
I use the SSHDroid app (an SSH server) on the phone, and transfer files
with the sftp protocol. That is, over WLAN.

You only need to install and start SSHDroid. Then you can use the text-
mode "sftp" client. Or you use a file manager, which supports sftp,
such as the KDE program "konqueror" or the Gnome file manager.

MTP isn't supported by Linux.

It works with WLAN.


Re: How do I transfer files from Android cellphone

By Gary Kirkpatrick at 08/10/2019 - 06:40

Try the pull down menu on your phone. On mine, which is 5x android, this
shows a menu for transfer.


Re: How do I transfer files from Android cellphone

By Colin Law at 08/10/2019 - 07:05

On Sat, 10 Aug 2019 at 11:42, Gary J. Kirkpatrick < ... at gmail dot com> wrote:
@Gary, Is yours connected for USB tethering (where the phone works as
the internet connection for the PC), or just plugged in to the PC usb


Re: How do I transfer files from Android cellphone

By Gary Kirkpatrick at 08/10/2019 - 08:46

Not tethered.