Synchronization: open source P2P file synchronization tool

Introduction: Sync is an open source peer-to-peer file synchronization tool that can be used to sync files between multiple devices, including Android phones.

Usually, we have a cloud synchronization solution like MEGA or Dropbox that can back up our files on the cloud while making sharing easier.

But what if you want to sync files across multiple devices without storing them in the cloud?

That is Synchronization Come to the rescue.

Sync: An open source tool for syncing files across devices

Sync lets you sync files across multiple devices (including support for Android smartphones). It mainly works through the Web UI on Linux, but also provides a GUI (requires separate installation).

But Syncthing doesn’t take advantage of the cloud at all, this is a peer to peer File synchronization tool. Your data is not sent to a central server. Instead, synchronize data with all devices between them. Therefore, it cannot really replace the typical cloud storage service on Linux.

To add a remote device, you only need the device ID (or simply scan the QR code) without having to involve the IP address.

If you want remote backup of your files – you should probably rely on the cloud.

Sync GtkSynchronous Graphical User Interface

All things considered, synchronization can come in handy in many ways. Technically, you can securely and privately access important files on multiple systems without having to worry about someone monitoring your data.

For example, you may not want to store some sensitive files on the cloud, so you can add other trusted devices to sync and keep a copy of these files.

Even though I described it briefly, it has more than just eyes. I also recommend that you read Official FAQ You can eliminate confusion if you are interested.

Synchronization function

You probably don’t want many options in the sync tool-to sync files reliably, it should be very simple.

Synchronization is indeed very simple and easy to understand-although it is recommended that you do the following document If you want to use all its features.

Here I will highlight some useful features of Syncthing:

Cross platform support

Sync AndroidSync on Android

As an open source solution, it does support Windows, Linux and macOS.

In addition, it also supports Android smartphones. If you are using an iOS device, you will be disappointed-so far, there are no plans to support iOS.

File version control

Synchronous file versioningSynchronous file versioning

Use all kinds simultaneously File version control method Archive old files (if replaced or deleted).

By default, you will not find features that enable it. However, when you create a folder to synchronize, you will find the option to switch the file version to your preferred method.

Easy to use

As a point-to-point file synchronization tool, it works without any advanced adjustments.

However, it does allow you to configure advanced settings when needed.

Security and privacy

Even if you don’t share your data with any cloud service provider, there are still some connections that might catch eavesdroppers’ attention. Therefore, synchronization can ensure that communications are secured using TLS.

Beyond that, there are reliable authentication methods that ensure that only devices / connections that you explicitly allow are granted access to sync / read data.

For Android smartphones, if you are using Orbot application. You will also find several other options for Android.

Other functions

Sync Screenshot 1

When you browse the tool yourself, you will notice that there is no limit to the number of folders and devices that can be synchronized.

So as a free and open source solution with many useful features, this is an impressive choice for Linux users who want to have a peer-to-peer synchronization client.

Install Syncthing on Linux

You may not see .deb files or .AppImage files on their official download page. However, you do Snapshot storage – If you are curious, you can read the getting started information on using the snapshot application on Linux.

You may not find it in the Software Center (if found, it may not be the latest version).

note: one left Sync Available if you want the GUI to manage it (rather than a browser).


If you have a Debian-based distribution, you can also use this terminal for installation-for instructions, see Official download page.

My experience with Syncthing

Personally, I’m in Pop! Installed it on _OS 19.10 and used it for a while before writing this file.

I try to sync folders, delete them, add duplicate files to see how file versioning works, and more. Works fine.

However, when I tried to sync it to my phone (Android)-the sync started a bit late, but not fast. So if we can choose to force synchronization explicitly, it might help. Or did I miss that option? If I want, please let me know in the comments.

Technically, it uses the resources of the system to work-so if you have many devices to sync, it may increase the sync speed (upload / download).

Overall, it works well-but I must say that you should not rely on it as the only backup solution for your data.

wrap up

Have you tried Syncthing? If so, what was your experience? Feel free to share in the comments below.

Also, if you know some great alternatives, please let me know too.