My laptop's OS is Ubuntu 12.04 and I bought an iPad, I want to transfer files (movies or reading materials) to and from my iPad. I tried some works on the Internet but they didn't work so if anybody can help me in a straight way I appreciate that.

6 Answers 6


FileApp from the iPad app store works with ftp over wifi to upload stuff from a laptop to the iPad.

  • The device appears in the network after sharing file access on the app, but It is not possible to transfer data to it, even though I am logged in, I get could not access - no permission If I try to copy a folder from my ubuntu to the ipad via terminal. It works via the GUI if I open the folder though.
    – Black
    Apr 13, 2017 at 6:59

The only way you are going to do this successfully would be to jailbreak your iPad. Then use what is called OpenSSH to transfer the files.

  • Jailbreak (Redsn0w)
  • OpenSSH (Cydia)(iPad)
  • OpenSSH Client (Ubuntu Software Center)

Just google the instructions for each it is pretty easy.

If you don't want to jailbreak you can try running WINE to install iTunes onto Ubuntu. Heres a reference



If you plug your ipad in your Ubuntu machine USB, you can access it directly from nautilus. It appears on the left panel (same place as USB drives). If using xubuntu, you can use Thunar (at least on Xubuntu 13.10, tested with iPad Air) or Gigolo - the remote system connection manager but Nautilus works too if you have it installed. You can also use ifuse to mount in the filesystem hierarchy.

If you need to use iTunes for backups, easy sync or upgrades without jailbreaking, I would recomend installing virtualbox and a win XP or 7 in it. I have it working perfectly in a XP virtualbox machine. You need to install Virtualbox Guest Additions and Virtualbox Extensions to use USB in guest machine.

Anyways, new pictures or files created on the iPad can be retrieved easily using the direct USB connection.


I have set up Apache on my machine.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install apache2

Created a sub-folder within the /var/www/ and changed the folder permission to username.

sudo mkdir /var/www/myfiles
sudo chown uname /var/www/myfiles

Now I put whatever material I want to transfer in that sub directory.

From your ipad browser access,


To get localip


All your files will be listed. Click on file you wan't to access. Ipad will open accordingly ask you to open the file in relevant application.(eg. pdf in ibook, mobi in kindle).

  • But how to put data on the ipad from ubuntu?
    – Black
    Apr 12, 2017 at 13:37

On Ubuntu 14.04 LTS (minor corrections from procedure above)

Set up Apache on linux machine.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install apache2

Create a sub-folder within the /var/www/html and changed the folder permission to rxw.

sudo mkdir /var/www/html/myfiles
sudo chmod 777 /var/www/html/myfiles

Move the files to seen from iPad to the myfiles folder. Apache does not follow symlink, so hard copy with cp is required.

Get localip from linux machine


(typically look for something like 192.168.1.xx)

From ipad browser (Safari works) access,


(http://192.168.1.xx/myfiles with the example above)


Ubuntu 16.04.3 LTS user. The set up for 14.04 LTS is fine. On the Ipad install FileExplorer from the store (free). Add the linux ip to the connections. Linux username and password are asked for. You can now manage files, like safe pictures.

  • This sounds incomplete. Ubuntu doesn't share files over the network unless you install and configure some network services first. -1 Jan 3, 2018 at 11:24
  • You can use a windows workgroup for sharing files. I use Samba to work in Ubuntu with the workgroup.
    – HDK Bouma
    Jan 13, 2018 at 10:15

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