Guide: How to Share A Folder Between Ubuntu/Linux and Windows

2 min

This beginner’s guide explains how you can quickly share a folder in Ubuntu/Linux.

Sharing a folder in Ubuntu/Linux and accessing the same over the network in other OS such as Windows is not that difficult. To perform this, the required packages are not installed by default in Ubuntu, however, you can bring up the install wizard to install required software automatically to share a folder. 

This guide applies to all Ubuntu versions (including 18.04, 19.10 and upcoming – unless there are major changes in the way this function is designed).

Steps to Share a Folder in Ubuntu

Step 1: Open file manager and right-click on the folder which you want to share. Click on the option “Local Network Share” in the context menu.

Local Network Share Option
Local Network Share Option

Step 2: Click on the Share this folder checkbox in the Folder Sharing dialog.

This would install Samba packages in your system. Samba is used to share files and printers over the network between Windows and Unix systems.

Folder Sharing Option - Install Samba
Folder Sharing Option – Install Samba

Step 3: After samba installation, do the following to share a folder or directory.

sudo smbpasswd -a Username

username should be a valid user of the respective Ubuntu system.

You should be all set now to access the folder/directory.

How to Access the Shared Folder

To access the shared folder from Ubuntu/Linux system, you need the IP address/hostname of your system. To do that, open System Settings -> Wifi -> Get the IP address. (This step may vary if you are running different Linux distribution other than Ubuntu. You may also want to run ifconfig to get the IP address).

IP Address Settings
IP Address Settings

Once you have the address, you can open File Manager in Ubuntu/Linux systems and type below in the address bar. You should change the IP address based on your system.

You can now see the shared Folder is shown with a tiny shared icon that denotes it is a network share folder.

Share Folder
Share Folder

To access the shared folder from the Windows system, Open Run (Windows Key+R) or open Explorer and enter the below address. You should change the IP address and Folder name based on your system


You should be able to view the contents of the shared folder and modify it based on permission given.

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