Manage Files On Your Kindle Fire HD With Ubuntu

I recently bought a Kindle Fire HD, and it's a great way to read books, watch movies, surf the Web and play games. As a Linux fan, I'm also pleased that it runs Android, except the Amazon file transfer software does not run in Linux.

You can access the Kindle using Amazon's software on Mac OS X or Windows, but you won't be able to get it to work in Linux? Fortunately, it's easy to access your kindle from Ubuntu or any other Linux distribution using a simple piece of software.

The first program is gMTP It's intended for managing MP3 players, but it works great for managing devices like the Kindle Fire HD.

To install it under Ubuntu, just use this command:

sudo apt-get install gmtp

To connect to your kindle, just plug the USB cable into your computer and the Kindle, start gMTP, and click "Connect."


You'll be able to navigate the files on your Kindle much as you would on the Desktop. You can add and remove folders and transfer files back and forth.

On the Kindle side, the app you'll want to install is the ES File Explorer. It's a file manager for Android similar to Nautilus in Ubuntu. It's how you'll actually be able to access the files you're transferring to your Kindle.


You can transfer any kind of data you want to your Kindle, even Android apps that aren't available in Amazon's store. You won't be able to use apps from Google Play, as it's not supported, but if you have another Android device like a tablet or smartphone available, you can transfer them from your device, to your computer, and then sideload it onto the Kindle that way.

There are also a number of open source applications that you can download to your computer and then transfer to your Kindle.

In either case, you'll have to allow the use of unknown apps on your device. To do this on your Kindle Fire HD, just go into the "Settings -> Device" and turn the "Allow Installation of Applications from Unknown Sources" option to "On." To install the app, just navigate to where you stored it, tap on it, and you'll be asked whether you'll wantt to install it.

By adding a couple of simple applications to your computer running Linux and your Kindle Fire HD, you'll have a lot more flexibility in using it, while getting around some of the limitations that Amazon's put on the device. It will also be more functional and even close to a real computer.

David Delony

David Delony is a writer for Make Tech Easier

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