Share files and folders with other computers

You can share files and folders with other people on your network through Shared Folders or Nautilus.

Sharing folders via the Shared Folders application

To share folders using the Shared Folders application:

  1. Press ApplicationsAccessoriesTerminal to open a Terminal.

  2. Type shares-admin and press Return to open Shared Folders.

  3. Press the Unlock button and enter your password in the Password for (username): field.

  4. Press the Authenticate button.

  5. You may receive a message which says Sharing services are not installed. If this happens, ensure that the two checkboxes in the message box are checked and press Install services. Sharing service support will then be downloaded and installed; this may take a while.

  6. Select the Shared Folders tab and press Add.

  7. Select the location of the folder you wish to share by changing the Path option.

  8. Choose Windows networks (SMB) from the Share through option.

  9. Enter a name and comment for the shared folder.

  10. If you would like people accessing the shared folder to be able to add, change and remove files in the folder, uncheck Read only. If you leave Read only checked, people will only be able to view files in the folder.

  11. Press OK to make the shared folder available. Other people on the same network (LAN) as you should now be able to access the folder.

See the Shared Folders Administration Tool manual for more information on managing network shares.

Sharing folders via Nautilus

To share folders using Nautilus:

  1. Press PlacesComputer to open a File Browser window.

  2. Right click the folder you wish to share and select Sharing Options on the popup menu.

  3. Select Share this folder from the popup menu. You may change the Share name field if you want to use a different share name.

  4. You may receive a message which says Sharing services are not installed. If this happens, ensure that the two checkboxes in the message box are checked and press Install services. Sharing service support will then be downloaded and installed; this may take a while.

  5. Select Allow other people to write in this folder if you wish to allow others to add, change, and remove files in this folder. If you leave this box unchecked, other people will only be able to view files in this folder. You may also fill in the Comment field.

  6. Select Guest access (for people without a user account) if you wish to allow guest users to access your files.

  7. Press Create share to make the shared folder available.

  8. You may receive a message stating that Nautilus needs to add some permissions to the folder in order to share it. If this happens, press Add the permissions automatically.

  9. Other people on the same network (LAN) as you should now be able to access the folder.

[Nota]

You may receive a message which says You do not have permission to create a usershare. If this happens, contact your system administrator or configure the Folder sharing service (samba).

See the Shared Folders Administration Tool manual for more information on managing network shares.

Accessing shared folders via Windows

If you would like to access a shared folder hosted on an Ubuntu computer by using computers running Windows, you may have to perform some additional steps:

  1. Press ApplicationsAccessoriesTerminal to open a Terminal.

  2. Type sudo smbpasswd -a username, replacing “username” with your own username. Press Return to run the command.

    [Nota]

    You can find out what your username is by typing whoami into the Terminal and then pressing Return.

  3. Enter your password when prompted with “[sudo] password for username:” and press Return again.

  4. When prompted with “New SMB password:”, enter the password that you would like to use to access the shared folder and then press Return. You can leave the password blank, which will allow anyone to access the shared folder.

  5. When prompted with “Retype new SMB password:”, enter the password that you just entered and then press Return.

  6. You should now be able to connect to the shared folders on the Ubuntu computer.

Problems connecting to shared folders in Windows

If you are unable to connect to a shared folder using Windows, try using the IP address of the Ubuntu computer rather than its host name to access the share:

  1. Press SystemAdministrationNetwork Tools and select the Devices tab.

  2. Select the name of your network connection from the Network device option list (for example, “eth0”). If you have several network connections, you may have to try this several times.

  3. Make a note of the number in the IP address column. It should consist of four numbers separated by dots (for example, “192.168.2.10”)

  4. On the Windows computer, select StartRun and type \\ipaddress in the text box, replacing “ipaddress” with the IP address of the Ubuntu computer

  5. Press OK to connect to the shared folder.

If you are still unable to access the shared folder, check that the folder sharing service is running on the Ubuntu computer:

  1. Press SystemAdministrationServices

  2. Find the Folder sharing service (samba) and ensure that the checkbox next to it is checked. If it is not checked, press Unlock and enter your administrative password. Press Authenticate, then enable the Folder sharing service.

  3. Press Close

More information can be found on the Ubuntu community help pages.