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How to use iPhone with Linux (Help)

IPhones are, by definition, limited to syncing with iTunes. That is, unless you jailbreak them. Although I personally don't have any problems with this, the fact remains that Apple, for some reason, hasn't put out an iTunes client for Linux distributions. This can be a huge headache for iPhone users who want to use a Linux desktop, because it is not possible to sync iPhones with Linux distributions like Ubuntu. Therefore, if you're wondering how to use an iPhone with Linux, here is a complete guide that could help you :

Understanding the problem

The main problem, with the use of an iPhone with a Linux system, is the fact that it is not possible to synchronize it. iTunes is the only software with which a non-jailbroken iPhone will synchronize and not yet available for any Linux platform. There are a number of libraries like "libimobiledevice" which has tried to allow users to synchronize iPhones with Linux, but not just a nuisance to make it work, it doesn't work for iOS 10. So if you have an iPhone, and you're using a Linux system as your daily driver, you're a little unlucky.

How about some wine

Wine (which is a recursive acronym of Wine Is Not Emulator) a compatibility level application that allows a user to run Windows apps on a Linux system (most often). So my first attempt to use an iPhone with Linux was to run iTunes with Wine. I used PlayOnLinux as the front end for the software, and then I discovered that Wine will not allow USB passthrough, so there is no way for an iPhone to synchronize with it. You can still use iTunes for everything else, including managing your iCloud music library, but if it doesn't sync with an iPhone, there's really no use. Which brings us to a kind of solution.

OwnCloud and XAMPP for file transfer between Linux and iPhone

The first problem we will face in some way allow the transfer of files and documents between an iPhone and a Linux desktop. To do this, you can use something like OwnCloud, along with XAMPP on your Linux system.

  • OwnCloud a self-hosted cloud server that you can access on your iPhone . It comes with a free plan and practically the best way to transfer documents between your iPhone and a Linux desktop. However, OwnCloud requires the execution of a server, firstly, in which XAMPP intervenes.
  • XAMPP a easy way to run a LAMP server on your Linux system, Mac or Windows. Just be careful to install a version of XAMPP running at least at PHP 5.4, because OwnCloud will not work on something below.

Now that we've solved everything, let's start with installing OwnCloud and XAMPP on our system. I am using a machine with Ubuntu 16.10 Yakkety Yak to do this, and the process should be similar for most other systems.

Installation of XAMPP on Ubuntu 16.10

We will install XAMPP first and configure a folder where we can keep OwnCloud files. To do this, just follow the steps below:

  • Download the XAMPP installer from the official website. It will be in the form of a .run file.

  • Once downloaded, Start the Terminal and make cd in the Downloads directory with the command " cd Downloads ". If you downloaded the installer to a different directory, use the name of that directory instead of" Download ". Also, make sure you use the correct capitalization, otherwise the command will fail.

  • Here, we will first provide the installation permissions to be performed. In the Terminal, execute the command " chmod + x ".

Note : the name of the installer may be different. Just use the exact name of the installer. You can type "chmod + x xampp" and press the "tab" button to automatically complete the name.

  • Now we will run the installer, with root permissions using the "command sudo ./ ". You will be asked for your password. Digitalo (will not be displayed, not even as asterisks) and press Enter.

  • The installer will then run and you will simply have to follow the instructions in the installer to install XAMPP on your system. installed in the directory "/ opt /" .

Create a folder to place OwnCloud files for XAMPP

Now that XAMPP is installed, we need a folder where we can place the OwnCloud files, so that XAMPP can run it. There is a folder called htdocs, where you can place the websites you want XAMPP to be able to run, and present in "/ opt / lampp / htdocs". However, we will not insert the OwnCloud files in the "opt" directory. Follow the steps below:

  • In Terminal, go to the main folder with " cd ~ ", or simply " CD ".

  • Now create a folder called " public_html "here, with the command" mkdir public_html ".

  • Next, we will give everyone read / write access to the "public_html" folder with the command " sudo chmod 777 -R public_html ".

  • Now, use the command " cd / opt / lampp / htdocs ", to browse the htdocs folder.

  • Here, just execute the command " sudo ln -s / home / username / public_html ./username ". Replace" username "with your username in Linux. In my case, the username" akshay ", then the command I'm using" sudo ln -s / home / akshay / public_html ./akshay ".

Yours folder "public_html" now ready to host files for XAMPP execution . Now we install OwnCloud.

Install OwnCloud on Ubuntu 16.10

  • Download the ZIP file for OwnCloud from their official website.

  • Extract this into the folder " public_html "that you created during XAMPP setup.

Running OwnCloud on XAMPP in Ubuntu 16.10

Now you can run OwnCloud on your Ubuntu 16.10 system, with XAMPP. Follow the steps below:

  • In Terminal, execute the command " sudo / opt / lampp / lampp start ". This will start the XAMPP server on your system.

  • Now, in your browser, go to " // localhost / username / owncloud " . Replace "username" with your username. In my case the address " // localhost / akshay / owncloud ".

  • You will be presented with a screen where you will need to create the administrator username and password . Simply choose what you want to use as login credentials.

Note : if an error occurs that OwnCloud cannot write data, simply start Terminal and execute the command "sudo chmod 777 / home / username / public_html / owncloud". Replace "username" with your username.

  • Once logged in, you will come addressed to the main OwnCloud interface . Here where you can upload, delete and otherwise manage all your files.

Connect to OwnCloud from iPhone

Then you have uploaded all the files you want to be able to access on your iPhone, on your OwnCloud server. There is still the problem of actually connecting your iPhone to OwnCloud before actually transferring files between devices. To do this, you will need to allow the OwnCloud configuration file to allow access using your computer's IP address.

Edit the OwnCloud configuration file

Change your OwnCloud configuration easy, just follow the steps below:

  • In Terminal, go to the OwnCloud configuration folder, using " cd / home / username / public_html / owncloud / config ".

  • Here, execute the command " sudo nano config.php ". This will open the configuration file inside the Terminal, ready to be modified.

  • Find simply the line that says " trusted_domains ". You'll see " localhost "already added l. Create a new line after" localhost "and type your computer's IP address in single quotation marks. The modified" trusted_domains "section should look something like this:

    (php) 'trusted_domains' => array ('Localhost', '',), (/ Php)

Connecting iPhone to OwnCloud

Connecting your iPhone to your own OwnCloud server is easy and can be done in two ways. We will discuss both here and you can use what suits you best.

1. Connection from iPhone to OwnCloud with Safari

To connect your iPhone to your OwnCloud server, proceed as follows:

  • Launch Safari on your iPhone, and in the address bar, go to " // addressip / username / owncloud / ". Obviously, replace "ipaddress" with the IP address of your computer and "username" with your username.

  • A screen will be presented to you access . Use the credentials you have created while configuring OwnCloud to log in. Once done there, you will be shown all the files and folders on your OwnCloud server. possible browse files and download files desired.

2. Connect from iPhone to OwnCloud with a WebDAV client

OwnCloud supports WebDAV to transfer files and, if you have an app (like Documents 5 by Readdle), which can connect to WebDAV servers, you can easily access the OwnCloud server. There are many iPhone file managers that support WebDAV and you can use one to connect to OwnCloud. I'm using Documents 5.

  • Launch Documents 5 on your iPhone and touch the icon " Services ". Here, touch" Add account ".

  • Choose " WebDAV server "from the list and enter a name for the server, along with the URL" //ipaddress/username/owncloud/remote.php/webdav/ ". Also enter your OwnCloud username and password.

  • Once finished, touch " Save "e Documenti will connect to your OwnCloud server. You will then be able to view (and download) all the files available on your OwnCloud server.

Note : if you use DHCP (you probably do), it is likely that your computer's IP address will continue to change, and you will have to manually edit the configuration file whenever it happens. better if you assign a static IP address to your computer, so you only have to modify the configuration file once.

Google Play Music to manage music between Linux and iPhone

Since we have no luck with iTunes on Linux, we will have to switch to other options. One of these options is Google Play Music. The music service will allow you to upload your music to the cloud and you can access your iPhone with the official Google Play Music app. With this, we are completely proposing to iTunes. So let's see how to get this result.

Using Google Music Manager to upload music to Google Play Music

The first thing we will have to do, before accessing our music on our iPhone, upload our music library to the Google Play Music website. To do this, we will need to install Google Music Manager. This can easily be done by following the indicated steps of following:

  • Download the Google Music Manager client from the official website. It is downloaded as a .deb package in Ubuntu and will open directly in the Software Center and be installed.
  • From your application launcher, search for Google Music Manager and start it.

  • Follow the steps to configure and run Music Manager. Once everything was done, the your music library will be loaded automatically in your Google Play Music library.

  • Once you have uploaded your songs (it may take some time, depending on the size of your library), you can launch the Google Play Music app on your iPhone (download) and sign in with your Google account . You will find your own music there.

In the future, you just have to insert your new music files in your Music folder in Linux and Google Music Manager will automatically load it into the Google Play Music library, so you can access it from your iPhone and any other device you have Google Play Music installed on.

Use your iOS device with Linux with these services

You can manage everything on your iPhone or even on iPad with Linux, using the services I mentioned in this article. Moreover, all these services have a free level available that can be used. Google Play Music offers a free plan that allows you to upload up to 50,000 songs to the cloud and OwnCloud lets you host your server, which means you don't have to pay anything. Obviously, this is never as easy as using iTunes to synchronize an iPhone – a process that only works – but, this is as close as possible to use an iPhone with Linux.

As always, share your thoughts on using an iPhone with Linux and, if you have any questions, let us know in the comments section below.