How to connect the mobile to a computer with Linux

How to connect the mobile to a computer with Linux

Currently, smartphones and tablets take up much of the time we spend using electronic devices. However, there are still things that can only be done with computers or that are more comfortable to do on them.

In this post we will see how to connect the mobile to a computer with Linux without the need to use the services of an external provider. We are talking about Android devices. This is ideal since we can start a job on the phone and finish it on the computer or vice versa, do it on the computer and share it from the phone wherever we are.

How to connect the mobile to a computer with Linux

In my experience, Linux has gotten along great with mobile devices since the days of Palm PDAs. I had two models of that brand and the synchronization, despite the lack of official support, was perfect. Even though I didn't get to try it, there was a tutorial to eliminate the Internet connection limitation that Palm put by software on some models.

There were also programs that allowed synchronizing contacts with equipment from the pre-smartphone era, but they only worked with the best-known models and at that time I used to buy terminals without pedigree, so I have no idea if they worked.

Nowadays, file managers of any Linux distribution can view and exchange files with the mobile phone. One point to keep in mind is that the connector cable must be new or in very good condition, otherwise, even if the battery continues to charge, the file exchange will not be possible.

Two things to keep in mind:

  1. instructions vary according to smartphone model and Android version
  2. You must activate the options for developers of the telephone.

To activate phone developer options You will need to find the section of the settings where the Android build number is and press it seven times.

Then go to System → Advanced Options (It may be in another location) and tap Options for developers. Activate the USB debugging

The first time you make the connection after this You will see a window on the phone that authorizes the connection to be established.

To be able to exchange files, with the phone connected you must select the option MTP Media Device. You do this by sliding your finger from the top screen down. Doing so will show you an indicator that the device is charging and a drop-down menu. Then, you will be able to exchange files as if it were a pen drive.


If you are looking for a tool that gives you greater control of your smartphone from your computer, a good option is Scrpy. You can connect both wired and wireless. I must confess that I completely failed to establish the connection wirelessly, but if you want to try, these are the instructions.

scrpy is in the repositories of the main Linux distributions, you can also install it from the snap store.

The first time you start the program with the command scrcpy pThe connection may not be established. Check the phone, you may have to authorize the connection. After doing so, run the program again.

Some scrcpy options

scrcpy -f Display the phone screen in full screen. In reality, it only occupies the height of the screen and the width is completed with black bands.

scrcpy -r nombre de archivo mp4 o nombre de
v Records the phone screen with the specified file name and format.

ctrl + ← Rotate the screen counterclockwise
Ctrl + → Rotate the screen clockwise.
Ctrl + v Copy the clipboard from the computer to the phone.

You can see the full options with the command scrcpy --help. The Mod key is the shift key.

There is a more complete application to interact to and from the computer and the phone which is KDE Connect, but, it deserves its own article.

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