If you are an developer looking for ideas on a new app that might be missing:

➡️ a simple file/directory synchronisation app supporting WebDAV (and ideally also rsync via SSH) ⬅️

(no need for proprietary cloud solutions, just open standards) is definitely lacking in the FOSS world. Unfortunately, not even the Nextcloud Android app is capable of *synchronizing* selected directories bidirectionally. What a pity. Anyone?

Boosts welcome. Apps *VERY* welcome :awesome:

Well, to be honest: there ONCE WAS Synctool (WebDAV+FTP,, but the last release was 2018 and the dev has not been active since. Then there WAS Syncopoli (rsync,, development stopped middle of 2020. But that's all I could find…

@IzzyOnDroid Maybe because WebDAV sucks?

Syncthing is the way to go.

@benoit Doesn't help you if your files are on a WebDAV server. Syncthing is good if you just want to sync files across a few devices. But some folks have e.g. Nextcloud instances as they need multiple things (files, calendars, contacts to name the most common).

So: thanks for your recommendation, but I' (and other Nextcloud users) are explicitly after WebDAV.


Yea I tried both and it didn't do well.

I would love to backup my whole phone over rsync or ANYTHING that my NAS supports (SFTP would be okay too).

ATM I use that Nextcloud-App to backup my photos (and some other files) that's the most important stuff.

@deusfigendi Seedvault supports Nextcloud storage, if you're talking about backups. But Seedvault needs to be integrated with the ROM, which not all "ROM bakers" (especially not the "stock ones") do. LineageOS and derivates usually have that with Android 10+ (/e/ has it hidden, so you need e.g. Activity Launcher to reveal the interface).


I DO use a stock-image at the moment.
I don't want to use my Nextcloud as backup target but just a machine I can reach via rsync or sftp.

@deusfigendi though it's no option with stock ROM: Nextcloud is only one of the possible targets Seedvault supports. I have it store my backups on SD card. As that location is easy to access (and backups there are encrypted), I could e.g. sync it via ADB whenever the device is connected (like using adbfs to mount, and then run rsync locally on my Linux machine). Same could be done for internal SD. But that would only sync when at home…

I never tried it, but magisk has a module for openssh and rsync

@basxto didn't think of that, thanks! Will take a look what that module does.

Still, not all users have Magisk on their devices – so my suggestion to develop such a SyncClient app for Android remains open 😉

@drwho Already mentioned in my second toot – and seems dead (development stopped about 2 years ago). Also, covers only rsync, not the primary target named WebDAV. But thanks nevertheless!


Not as lightweight as rsync or WebDav but `syncthing` has been working pretty well for me for many years.

@IzzyOnDroid The nextcloud APP is not *syncronizing*??
What am I missing?
What do the '*' mean?

@lgehr You got it. See (issue open for almost 5 years now). All it does is limited 1-way sync: automated upload of fotos, and automated download of files marked as "favorites" (aka "for offline use" – i.e. you can't even mark a directory to get new files automatically). No idea what those 30MB are for in the APK.

And the '*' are meant as "emphasis" (italics in Markdown, bold in XMPP).

@farshidhakimy point is, from what I've read they cannot even synchronize. You cannot say "this directory, bidirectionally". All you can do is "keep this file up-to-date on my device, and upload all new files from that directory". That's not sync.

@IzzyOnDroid Izzy is correct, the Nextcloud app only downloads files server > phone. If you make local changes to the file on your phone, those changes are not synced back to the server. Basically the @nextcloud Android app is useless for anything other than read access to your files from mobile. The photo/video auto upload is unreliable.
My solution, as I self host Nextcloud, is to run syncthing with access to the same storage. Mostly just for notes.

@michael @nextcloud "If you make local changes to the file on your phone, those changes are not synced back to the server." <= THAT's what I mean – and that's not what the app's official documentation advertises ("Automatic synchronization of your files", see But it's something that should be urgently added there, see e.g. (open for almost 5 years now).

I started a similar thread in Italian:

One thing I've been told is that this problem could depend from which way the Nextcloud hosting service you use lets edit files: let's say your Nextcloud has Onlyoffice habilitated,probably you will be able to open the file locally on the phone,edit it and save *directly on the server*; while if I open a Word doc it is downloaded on my phone in only reading,so I must load manually the edited new file to server

@edosecco It's not about editing files. It's about keeping directories in sync. If you e.g. add a file on either end, it should show up on all connected clients having sync enabled. This is currently not possible, as e.g. on Android only "pinned" files are watched (and you cannot pin what's not (yet) there).

Oh, sorry, I catched the point now 😓 yes, I just manually added a file on phone local folder and it doesn't show in the app even after refreshing.
But, by the way, so don't you have any problem when editing a file opened from the app?

@edosecco No. Because I don't use the app (makes no sense to me: a 30M APK with close to no functionality I need – apart from being needed by some other apps just to log in to my Nextcloud . And I suggest to any app using the Nextcloud SSO library for this instead of demanding such a huge dependency; some already do).

They have nice things in their app (like streaming music from the cloud), but close to nothing I'd need (maybe instant camera upload, but not for 30M). Sync I'd need, but it's not there.

Perhaps I found something! I went through app settings and found this command: it seems to work! I defined a folder from my phone and a folder on server and the files are "taken" from the phone and I see them on PC after a minute. The screenshot is in italian but I hope you can understand which command is:

@edosecco THAT direction works (AFAIR it's called "instant upload", and was originally intended to automatically upload new photos taken with the phone's camera).

Now add a file on the other end and see if it shows up on the phone. I bet it won't – at least not automatically.

@IzzyOnDroid no WebDAV or rsync, but bidirectional sync should be working fine with Syncthing. I guess you know that one already? Great decentralized sync tool IMO

The best tool I could find for this is Foldersync Pro - but that's not FOSS.

I am wondering, why the Nextcloud app still doesn't support this, since basically all technologies required for the task are already there. It seems all that's needed is someone who combines them into an appropriate workflow.

@Goldmaster @IzzyOnDroid @nextcloud Not sure if team will work on this but there are some apps (on Google Play, not open source) like Autosync that does this for Nextcloud.
I use Nextcloud and I am looking for this functionality too.

But I think Izzy specifically needs it for or rsync. Will have to see if we can schedule an cronjob using .

@dsoft @Goldmaster Thanks, I almost forgot about Termux – that could be another possibility. But probably only for the more tech-savy. The "average user" would rather need something with a simple interface. – And yes, in fact I'm still using a closed-source solution (FolderSync, triggered via Tasker) which I can no longer update due to the lack of Google Play access (my Google account was locked/removed years ago due to "inactivity"). @nextcloud

Sign in to participate in the conversation
Mastodon for Tech Folks

This Mastodon instance is for people interested in technology. Discussions aren't limited to technology, because tech folks shouldn't be limited to technology either!