This tutorial shows how to install Syncthing on Ubuntu 16.04 Desktop LTS Xenial Xerus.

Syncthing is a free continuous file synchronization tool that lets you synchronize your files across desktops, tablets, mobile phones or even servers. It’s an open source alternative to the popular BitTorrent Sync (aka btsync) application. The creation, modification or deletion of files on one machine will automatically be replicated to your other devices. Syncthing does not upload your data to the cloud but exchange your data directly between your devices. All your data is encrypted when transmitting between your devices.

Install Syncthing on Ubuntu 16.04 via Official Deb Repository


curl to download the Syncthing GPG key then import the key to Ubuntu system with apt-key.

sudo apt-get install curl

curl -s | sudo apt-key add -

-s option enables silent mode.

If you see OK in the terminal, that means the GPG key is successfully imported. Then add official Syncthing deb repository with the following command.

echo "deb syncthing release" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/syncthing.list

Update local package index and install Syncthing on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS.

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install syncthing

This deb repository also works on Debian or other Debian/Ubuntu-based Linux distros such as Linux Mint, Elementary OS.

Set Up Syncthing as a Systemd Service

The official Syncthing deb package ships with the needed systemd service file. Under /lib/systemd/system/directory, you will find a syncthing@.service file. Enable syncthing to auto start when Ubuntu is booted up by running the below command. Replace username with your actual username.

sudo systemctl enable syncthing@username.service

The above command will create a symbolic link that points to the syncthing@.service file.

Created symlink from /etc/systemd/system/ to /lib/systemd/system/syncthing@.service.

Now we can start the Syncthing service with the following command.

sudo systemctl start syncthing@username.service

Check status

systemctl status syncthing@username.service


● syncthing@linuxbabe.service - Syncthing - Open Source Continuous File Synchronization for linuxbabe
   Loaded: loaded (/lib/systemd/system/syncthing@.service; enabled; vendor preset: enabled)
   Active: active (running) since 六 2016-06-04 17:16:20 CST; 31s ago
     Docs: man:syncthing(1)
 Main PID: 5586 (syncthing)
   CGroup: /system.slice/system-syncthing.slice/syncthing@linuxbabe.service
    └─5586 /usr/bin/syncthing -no-browser -no-restart -logflags=0

We can see that Syncthing auto start is enabled and it’s running. Now in your Web browser’s address bar, type to access the Syncthing Web interface. You can add other Syncthing devices and share folders with them. The default syncing folder is ~/Sync

Ubuntu syncthing web interface

Install Syncthing on Android

You can get Syncthing from Google Play store.

I hope this post helped you to install Syncthing on Ubuntu 16.04. Comments, questions or suggestions are always welcome. If you found this post useful, ? please share it with your friends on social media! Stay tuned for more Linux tutorials.

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