My Profile Photo

Abhijith PA

Hello, I'm Abhijith. A Free Software enthusiast.

A lazy local file sharing setup

At home, I have both a laptop and a *desktop PC. Most of my essential things, such as emails, repositories, password managers, contacts, and calendars are synced between the two devices. However, when I need to share some documents and I am lazy enough to go pick a flash drive, my only option is to push them to the Internet and download them on the other system, which is sitting at 20~ meters away. Typically, I do this either through email attachments or a matrix client.

Occasionally, I think about setting up a network storage solution at home. But then I ask myself do I really need one.

In my home network, I already have a Raspberry Pi running as my Wi-Fi router, doing DNS level ad blocking with Dnsmasq and DNS over TLS with stubby. Rpi has a 16GB memory card. I can mount RPi remote directory to both machines.

I use pcmanfm as my file manager. It has the ability (like every other file managers) to mount remote storage over ssh. But one annoying thing is that whenever I open the mount directory, by default it shows the root file system of the remote device even when I explicitly mentioned the path.

Then I discovered sshfs. I wrote the following script, which mount remote directory and open that in pcmanfm.

sshfs raspberrypi:Public $LOCMOUNT
pcmanfm $MOUNT

I haven’t enabled any encryption for the memory until now since other than some logs RPi wasn’t writing anything to it. I set up fscrypt on Rpi storage now. And ta-da, a lazy person’s local sharing solution.

*Desktop - Well, technically it’s an old laptop with a broken keyboard and trackpad, connected to a monitor, keyboard and mouse. I don’t feel keeping it on a shelf.