GSOC 2013 ends, KDE Connect goes on: file transfers added

This year’s GSOC is over.  In the last 3 months KDE Connect has grown from a dream to reality. I will not take the money and run away from it now: I’m writting this post to announce that I will keep developing KDE Connect and that I hope other developers will join me to make it an awesome connectivity platfrom!

But that’s not all I want to announce, we have got new features too! The last merge to master included the promised file transfer plugin, renamed as “Share receiver plugin”. The new name makes more sense because it can not only receive files but also text and URLs from any Android app using the “Share to…” menu. For now this feature is only working from Android to KDE, but support for KDE to KDE and KDE to Android will come soon.

Here you can find a tarball for this version, tagged 0.3. We are not releasing a stable 1.0 version yet, because some things are still broken (like encryption, as you pointed me out in the comments of the last blogpost).

KDE Connect 0.3 tarball
KDE Connect Android app on Google Play
Android APK for people not using Google Play

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72 thoughts on “GSOC 2013 ends, KDE Connect goes on: file transfers added

  1. Awesome…
    i’ve just tested it and it works as expected :)

    Really glad to see you plan to keep working on it , this app has a really good potential…

    what’s planed next ? 2way sync( Kde->Android)?

    btw, how can we show the battery level i haven’t found a way to display it …

    1. The battery is shown nowhere now (well, there is a patch for kdelibs in a previous post to displays it if you want). I think the plasmoid should be improved to include the battery too… maybe this is what will come next, but I can’t promise: my todo list is long!

  2. I want you to know that your work is appreciated, but your attitude is doubly appreciated. Keep up! There are going to be happy users along the way thanking you for your hard work, just like me.

  3. Yeah, I’m getting the same “using an older protocol” problem. Also, it hasn’t loaded any file transfer plugin. It’s almost like my previously compiled version (0.1) of KDE Connect is interfering with the new version (0.3)?

      1. Make sure you actually have the latest version installed from GIT (branch master). If you want to be extra-sure the old installation doesn’t interfere, “make uninstall” it first. That message shouldn’t appear if you install the last version.

  4. Have you thought about monetizing your Android app? It is not unheard of. There is http://todotxt.com/ . What do you think of monetizing open source applications specially when we have something like Android where packaging can be a problem for folks and they might prefer to download from Play store.

    1. Thank you too, Dani! You guys made my first Akademy an awesome experience :) Eskerrik asko!

      Sharing contacts/calendar should be possible, but it’s not a priority now because you can already use Web Accounts for that. However it will surely be added in a future!

  5. Albert, I really appreciate your work, KDE connect is great!

    Btw, why do Notifications require Andro 4.3?

    1. They added a new notifications API in 4.3 that is much more powerful than previous hacks to access them so I decided to implement that API. However in a future support for older phones could be added too.

    1. Text messages are accessed to show incoming message notifications, your contacts to translate the number to contact name in those same notifications, phone identity to unique identify your phone in the network, and battery stats for the battery reporting plugin. And as this is free software you can always download the code, review it for evil features and build it yourself.

  6. 1.

    why did you choose wifi technology ? wifi does not get any power saving technology .

    Bluetooth 4 gets a power saving technology .

    Since bluez 5 linux bluetooth is compliant to bt 4 .

    Acho and some others works since opensuse beta 1 according opensuse 13.1 is compliant with bt 4 via bluez 5 . we expect first test with opensuse rc1 .

    alex fiestas joins his effort to opensuse and works on a bluedevil compliant with bt 4 (via bluez 5) to help acho .

    now android 4.3 is compliant with bt 4 .

    2.

    do you plan to join your effort with syncevolution project ? they have a feature to sync contacts , calendar etc. called “Synchronize with a SyncML server via HTTP”
    or “Synchronize with a SyncML-capable device via Bluetooth” ?

    thanks for your promising work .

    1. There is support for several backends, so bluetooth could be included too. However, my point for using wifi is that you are going to have wifi enabled anyway, so better use it than have wifi AND bluetooth.

      I didn’t know about syncevolution, I will have a look at it.

      1. 1.This is good idea if I use wifi access point. How I can control my device if I have not any access point? Or I have not password to any access point near me?

        2. I have Motorola defy+ with MIUI v5 3.11.8.(android 4.1.2) I have kdeconnect 0.3 and kde 4.11. When I use remote control then I can remote only audacious. I can not remote smplayer or vlc… When I use share photos then it ask me about which device use to share and nothing doings. In which folder it must send it?

          1. Yes I have pairing. I told about using wi-fi as primary connect, but We have not access to wi-fi spot everywehre. NFC in notebooks not popular. We have only BT as alternate connection way in pair Notebook-Smartphone. Will KDE-Coonect work in pair with smartphone if Notebook has ethernet connection and Android has WiFi connection but they has IPs from one network?

  7. Today’s commit broke the compilation, in `daemon.cpp` you are linking to `backends/online/onlinelinkprovider.h` but `backends/online/` doesn’t exist. Have you forgotten a `git add` or is the problem on my side?

    And btw, is there a more convenient place to contact for this kind of thing?

  8. I’m using Opensuse 12.3-x64 with KDE 4.11.2 and i havent “Trust this device” in KDE Connect GUI.
    Is there someone with the same issue? how can i solve this? Thanks.

  9. I’m using Opensuse 12.3-x64 with KDE 4.11.2. The low battery warning me jumped to 14% is there a way to regulate different levels?

    Hola Albert, sin aplicar el patch me salto el nivel de batería baja al 14 % (android 2.3.6) ¿hay alguna forma de regularlo para que salte a diferentes niveles?

  10. Quick question, I’ve never really understood how the device detection works ?
    I have KDE Connect installed on both ends, but nothing is being detected.

    My laptop doesn’t have bluetooth, both devices are connected to the same network (tablet through wifi, laptop through ethernet). Is there anything to do so that they see each other ?

    1. You don’t need bluetooth, only to be on the same network. Make sure there is no firewall installed on your computer that could be blocking the range 1714-1764 (both TCP and UDP).

      1. Like plaristote I have both ends installed and running but they don’t see each other even when on the same wifi network. I followed the instructions at http://www.jfdesignnet.com/?p=3274 with the approprite location for the git repository. No errors anywhere but no joy either. Is there something to do to figure it out? I’m on fedora and see not mentions of kdeconnect in dmesg or /var/log/messages

    2. I get the same thing. I have:
      * KDE connect installed from the playstore on my Nexus S (Android 4.1.2)
      * Current git on my Chakra box (254.787e8e8-1 – Fri Dec 6 22:32:55 EST 2013).
      * qdbus org.kde.kded /kded loadModule kdeconnect returns true
      * kbuildsycoca4 -noincremental shows nothing unusual
      * I have the firewall turned off on both Chakra and my router

      And yet KDE Connect in the system settings shows no device to pair.

      My PC is hooked up directly to the modem via ethernet
      The phone is connected via wifi (the wifi transmitter is also hooked up to the modem via ethernet)

      Any ideas? Any progress on the USB backend, which I’m guessing would help here…?

      Thanks for all your work on this. This is one of the first projects I’ve seen since when compiz first debuted that really felt like desktop user Linux was leading the way, innovation-wise.

  11. First of all: Big thanks, very good job!

    Are there any plans / would it be possible to support calendar sync?
    I know it works with Android -> Google -> KDE, but that’s definitely not my favourite.+

    Keep up your great work.

  12. I’m sure that if you post your todo list somewhere, other developers will join this great project. ;)

    it’s power is that is seamless and simply integrated with kde.
    To increase this integration i’d propose some feature (i post them here and not on bugs.kde because i don’t know what’s already in your plans):
    - ability to dismiss an incoming call
    - ability to send/answer sms: eventually this can happen as a plugin for kopete (or akonadi)
    - a KIOslave: maybe this is overkill because there are many (s)ftp server for android (or bluetooth OBEX/ftp), but often they are a pain to setup for the average user.

    PS: i also suggest generating and adding the project’s icons from http://goo.gl/HvUZU3 or the equivalent tool integrated in eclipse.
    PPS: i posted a couple of patch on bugs.kde to address the name setting and a small problem in filetransfer.

    1. Hello Mauro! I’ve seen your patches and I’m really happy with your contributions to the project! Thank you very much, you are awesome! My laptop died recently so I haven’t been able to compile and try them, but they look nice :)

      The KIO Slave and the ability to answer SMS are already in my TODO list, being able to dismiss a call sounds like a good idea too! Maybe I will do another blogpost with the list of ideas I have in mind so other people could help.

      What icons do you think that need to be changed?

      Thank you again and I hope I can get a new laptop soon to continue the development and to merge your patches!

      1. I feel sorry for your laptop. :( I hope you get your replacement soon.

        For the icons, don’t worry too much: it’s just to follow the android guidelines. (Guidelines: http://goo.gl/E70Ez)
        When possible you need to include in your projects the right drawables for any screen density (mdpi, ldpi, hdpi, xhdpi, xxhdpi) and follow a naming convention.
        The tool i’ve suggested, automates this task generating a zip that needs only to be exploded in your kdeconnect-android/KdeConnect/src/main (eclipse does automate this as well).
        You need only to check the right clipart from the list, download and unzip it.

        A i’ve seen your project is on the reviewboard, I’ll file a changeset there with this stuff (and my other patches if you want).

  13. I have an issue when there are more than one user logged in at a machine, for each user the host machines name is listed on the android device with no clue which one belongs to which user. There is a need to be able to distinguishes the users when you want to pair the device and the KDE account.

    Instead of listing:

    Hostname
    Hostname
    Hostname

    it should be listed as:
    Hostname:User1
    Hostname:User2
    Hostname:User3

    I guess for most single guys it’s no issue, but when you start to have family of some kind, then you start to have one.

  14. I have an issue… Lately have kdeconnect working for about 2 or 3 months… but after reinstall my Linux Mint 15 KDE after that my disk died…. I tried to compile it again, no errors, no warnings but if I open the kdeconnect under kde settings the window not shown any device it’s all empty…..
    If I run it like Konsole command… same result and I haven’t any error message or else.
    Any ideas??? By the way… thanks for your effort to do this app. ;)

    1. by the way… I use git clone –> make –> sudo make install method to make it run.. like I lately did… and, most important, sorry about my english… I’m an Argentinian boy, out of practice on english language o.O

    2. I don’t know if you have the same issue as me, but here is a tip:
      %kcmshell4 kded
      In the service list, you may find kdeconnect, but not started, even if you have the plasmoid on the desktop!
      Start it and… for me, magic: instant detection!

  15. Great idea and great start of this app!
    Is it possible to cross different networks using an ssh tunnel? If yes which ports do I have to tunnel?

  16. Hey,

    first of all cool app :) really nice to see such an app!

    But: Why do you need to access the PhoneID? I’m not really sure if such an app need this kind of informations like IMEI, IMSI or Phone number. So do you need this for internal statistics or is it REALLY needed for some functionality?

    Best,
    David

  17. I’m triying to compile the code and it give the next error:
    may you help me please =S. i use FEDORA 19×32
    [M@MikeSoft kdeconnect-kde]$ cmake -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=/home/M/KDECONECT/kdeconnect-kde
    – The C compiler identification is GNU 4.8.2
    – The CXX compiler identification is GNU 4.8.2
    – Check for working C compiler: /usr/bin/cc
    – Check for working C compiler: /usr/bin/cc — works
    – Detecting C compiler ABI info
    – Detecting C compiler ABI info – done
    – Check for working CXX compiler: /usr/bin/c++
    – Check for working CXX compiler: /usr/bin/c++ — works
    – Detecting CXX compiler ABI info
    – Detecting CXX compiler ABI info – done
    CMake Error at /usr/share/cmake/Modules/FindKDE4.cmake:98 (message):
    ERROR: cmake/modules/FindKDE4Internal.cmake not found in
    /home/Mike/.kde/share/apps;/usr/share/kde-settings/kde-profile/default/share/apps;/usr/share/kde4/apps
    Call Stack (most recent call first):
    CMakeLists.txt:5 (find_package)

    – Configuring incomplete, errors occurred!
    See also “/home/M/KDECONECT/kdeconnect-kde/CMakeFiles/CMakeOutput.log”.

  18. Kubuntu or Ubuntu 13.10 Saucy add KDE Konnect to official repository, so ubuntu users now can quickly install KDE Connect via command:
    sudo aptitude install kdeconnect-kde

    Can you add this info into post?

    1. I don’t want to make it “easy” to install since it is not stable yet, and there are bugs that need to be fixed before an official release (and an official announcement :P).

  19. Did you have any roadmap or feature plan? I will be glad to see at first – support for Bluetooth connection in future versions, because WiFi eats too much battery. Can you post any your plans for next versions?

    1. I have no idea about how bluetooth works, so I would need help from a bluetooth master-ninja-expert to code the support for it. I want to post the roadmap here in the blog, but plasma ate my TODO list (it was in a sticky note plasmoid :( ) and now I have to re-do my to-do first. ;P

  20. Thanks a lot for making this. This is really, really cool. I installed 0.3 on my laptop and my Galaxy S3, and it’s working great. It’s really cool that Clementine automatically pauses when someone calls me, and when I get an SMS, it pops up on my laptop (although not the message content yet). And this happens instantly! There’s no delay at all, which is impressive. I can’t wait to be able to leave my phone plugged into the charger in the other room and send and receive SMSes from my laptop, integrated with KDE!

    Two questions/suggestions:

    1. Have you considered setting up a PPA with daily builds?

    2. I don’t mind building it now and then, but how much of KDE do I have to build to do it? Could you put up a wiki page with simple instructions on what packages I need to install to build? Alternatively, you could add a debian/ directory to the source, and then anyone could use the dpkg tools like dpkg-checkbuilddeps and dpkg-buildpackage to do the building, then install with dpkg.

    1. As the previous reply says, there are pseudo-up-to-date packages for Ubuntu and other distros. However I would recommend you building it from sources since the packages are not stable anyway until the official 1.0 release, and you are missing bug fixes and other changes.

      I do not use Ubuntu and I have little idea about how PPAs work, so I would be really happy if an Ubuntu user decides to set up one for KDE Connect :)

      To build it yourself, you don’t need to build any extra KDE component (unless you are using Debian or other distros that ship really old versions), just install the development packages of the libraries needed.

  21. I saw in the git log, that the kde daemon now supports custom icons. I placed a “smartphone.svgz” in ~/.kde4/share/apps/desktoptheme/default/icons but it is not used by kdeconnect. Any suggestions?

  22. Hi, this is great, a truly innovative idea. Is this possible on Windows, Mac etc? I mean, is this an original idea? Wifi is the way to go, some desktops/laptops and even some tablets don’t have Bluetooth. I know, an adapter is like 99 cents on Ebay. Like you said, why use two transmitters?

    I wish you’d write a rambling blog…I mean a blog not only about new features but thoughts and features you may have dismissed and why. People might correct you…no, no, no, we want that.

    Keep our info private! I don’t like using post to Facebook or using Google Drive to get a picture to my computer. I know, I can use a cable and I do! You saved my phone port!

    I compiled it on Mageia 3. I’ll post instructions here and the Mageia Forum.
    If you need to charge for the Android App I can understand, but I think the good Linux people here would all donate something?

    Someday I think Linux will gain desktop market share even though the desktop computer share overall is dropping, and this is one little piece of the puzzle that will make that happen. Fantastic addition to KDE!!! Thank you!

    1. Thanks for your comments :) There is a post with a list of ideas, the problem (as with any free software project) is that there are more ideas than there is time!

  23. Really great job with this, works like a champ. Very useful to me personally. The sharing and receiving files is really nice and is one of the best ways to transfer files/photos from my phone to my KDE desktop that I’ve ever come across. Lot of potential here, I think. Kudos to you.

  24. This app is amazing. Really brings my whole computing experience together on KDE. :D keep up the good work.

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