Easiest Way to Transfer Files Between Droid and Mac

Transferring files between Mac and Droid.

One of the biggest issues of Mac users, myself included, with Droid is that files don’t sync up easily. With my iPhone if I took a picture of something, or bought music in iTunes, it was automatically available to all my Mac devices. I made the switch to Droid a few months ago, as a test, and this has been one of my biggest complaints.

Nor can you just hook up up to your computer via USB and drag and drop files back and forth. Quite frustrating.

But there are a few options out there that allow you to transfer files back and forth fairly effortlessly.

One is called Droid NAS. This app uses your wifi to connect to you computer and allows your computer to see it in Finder as another computer on a network. You can open it up and drag and drop files to your hearts content…

… unless you heart is running Mavericks. You see, Droid NAS uses the SMB2 file transfer protocol. And while Apple claims that Macs use it as well, that statement is a little less than accurate.

But, with a few extra hoops to jump though you will get it to work fine. Just follow these steps:

  1. First I’ll assume that you have Droid NAS installed on your device and that you went into Settings in the app and defined your networks. It seems to run fine without defining your wifi, but I did this as an extra precaution as there are a few different networks around me.
  2. In Droid NAS, click Start Server. Once the server is started and the device is announced over Bonjour you’ll get a blurb about connecting directly using an IP that starts smb://XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX:XXXX.
  3. Now open up Finder on your Mac and hit CMD+K. This opens the window to enter in an IP to direclty connect with a computer over a network; i.e. the IP that you see in Droid NAS. But instead of using smb:// which is for SMB2(which won’t work on Mavericks) we are going to force it to use SMB1 which works fine. So in the server address you will enter cifs://XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX:XXXX
  4. You may get a pop up asking to log in, just click Guest and Connect.
  5. If this still doesn’t work for you, and it didn’t for me, you will then need to add the directory that you want to go into on the device; i.e. SD Card, into the server address. Such as cifs://XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX:XXX/SD Card

One suggest is to save the IP in the direct connection window, so you’re not typing it in every time you want to transfer things over.

But there is a downfall. This app only allows access to the internal memory. So if you are trying to find an app that will keep you from not having to remove you SD Card to transfer things, this is not the app for you.

Instead look into Wifi File Transfer. It’s an app that, when turned on, gives you an IP address to enter into your browser. There is an interface that, while basic, gives you access to all the files on your device, SD Card and internal. If you have any questions there is a nice big How To Use button that gives you the rundown on how to upload and download.

The downside is that if you have a large amount of files it can take quite some time to download. But no more than any download off of the Internet. I had about 2 GB of images and took about 10 minutes.

So you may want to download/backup from your device more frequently.

Also, Wifi File Transfer is 1/3 the size of Droid NAS, at just over 1 MB compared to 3 MB, respectively.

You can now transfer music, photos, documents and access your external SD Card over your wifi. Hopefully, your Mac-to-Droid life has just become a little easier.

2 thoughts on “Easiest Way to Transfer Files Between Droid and Mac

  1. I’m running yosemite 10.10.2 and this would not work, is there another workaround? Thank you.

    1. That would depend on what the issue is. Basically, the only way that I have found is to create a server environment on the Droid and access it via the Mac. There are a few apps that do this. What exactly is your issue?

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