I have a Nexus 4 which is currently running the most up to date Ubuntu Touch build. As much as I enjoy the default ringtones and notification sounds included with the OS, I was wondering where the directory which holds said sounds is and how to access it on my PC. I figure if the notification sounds are in .ogg format I should be able to add Android notification sounds and ringtones. Any ideas?


It looks like the current settings UI just lists the ringtones found in /usr/share/sounds/ubuntu/ringtones, which is read only (provided you haven't switched it to writable image mode).

The choice of ringtone is controlled through GSettings, so you could change the ringtone to a file in a different directory using the gsettings tool from the command line. As the phablet user, run a command like the following:

gsettings set com.ubuntu.touch.sound incoming-call-sound /path/to/ringtone.ogg

Presumably a way to set custom ringtones will be added to the UI at some point in the future though.


Connect your phone to ubuntu computer. Copy your music/sound to Music folder. Open:


Inside shell:

sudo mount -o remount,rw /
sudo cp /home/phablet/Music/Your\ Ringtone.ogg /usr/share/sounds/ubuntu/ringtones/

Also, if you'd like to change the notification or alarm sounds

sudo cp /home/phablet/Music/Your\ Notification.ogg /usr/share/sounds/ubuntu/notifications/

Note 1: You need developer mode on, password set and have the phone unlocked to be able to connect to it and than to use the sudo command on it.

Note 2: OTA updates are likely to revoke your changes.


The gsettings command no longer seems to work.

The good news is that you just need to copy your custom SMS notification tone into /usr/share/sounds/ubuntu/notifications/ and copy your custom ringtone into /usr/share/sounds/ubuntu/ringtones/


First run this command if you are in read only mode.

sudo mount -o remount,rw /

Save your own ringtones and notifications using following commands: (Preferred format is *.ogg)

sudo cp /path/to/your/ringtone/ringtone.ogg /usr/share/sounds/ubuntu/ringtones/
sudo cp /path/to/your/ringtone/ringtone.ogg /usr/share/sounds/ubuntu/notifications/

It helps to alias your SSH for a resizeable terminal before using gsettings command otherwise you get these annoying line-wraps on the same line: How can I make `adb shell` have the correct terminal size?

Having done the above then you can do:

touch /userdata/.writable_image

su - phablet

cd /home/phablet/Downloads/
wget http://adequatech.ca/stephenchowsinging.ogg
wget http://adequatech.ca/trekBeepClick.ogg
wget http://adequatech.ca/trekIntercomWhistle.ogg

gsettings set com.ubuntu.touch.sound incoming-call-sound /home/phablet/Downloads/stephenchowsinging.ogg
gsettings set com.ubuntu.touch.sound incoming-message-sound /home/phablet/Downloads/trekBeepClick.ogg

For SMS notification sound, try this one:

gsettings set com.ubuntu.touch.sound incoming-message-sound /home/phablet/Downloads/trekIntercomWhistle.ogg

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.