I just left Dropbox due to privacy concerns, and started using BitTorrent Sync which I already love.

While I wish BitTorrent Sync becomes hugely successful, I am also wondering whether there is any Open Source equivalent?

I know rsync and unison, but they miss the QR code UI that makes it so easy to share secrets between smartphones.


  • Sync folders, handle conflicts
  • Peer-to-peer
  • Peers are found automagically, especially when on the same network, or by using smart tricks, preferably without a central server
  • Easy folder addition with QR code
  • Run on Linux/Mac/Windows/Android/iOS or at least Linux/Android

Not present in BitTorrent Sync, but bonus for:

  • Ubuntu indicator showing whether up-to-date, and providing an easy way to open the UI.

Non-mobile UI can be a local web server or native, but I am OK with command-line in early stages of development.

  • 1
    I don't know about peer-to-peer, but there are plenty of open source Dropbox replacements like Owncloud. But maybe you're looking for something like Freenet? If yes, I'll happily expand to an answer.
    – Turion
    Mar 6, 2015 at 16:01
  • 1
    Peer-to-peer is a central requirement, so Owncloud is not a valid solution. Freenet sounds like it might be a valid solution.
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Mar 7, 2015 at 7:34
  • I'm just realising Freenet is maybe not the right thing if you want to host data that is only accessible to you
    – Turion
    Mar 7, 2015 at 7:49
  • 1
    @Mawg: SpiderOak is not peer-to-peer sync: It uses a central (self-hosted) server.
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Mar 23, 2015 at 3:33
  • 1
    Yup, I know that - technically it do0esn't answer your question, but I just thought it might help you to know that there is something that answers the spirit of your question. It is end to end encrypted, cannot be decrypted by the SpiderOak company, and you can share with your peers. Since you haven't received an answer, you might want to consider it as an option. Mar 23, 2015 at 8:00

1 Answer 1


Syncthing is a file synchronization program which is:

  • 100% peer-to-peer (decentralized, no central server needed)
  • Open source
  • Runs on Android, Windows, Linux, Mac, BSD, Solaris

syncthing web UI

An Ubuntu indicator is available, it also integrates in the file manager (Nautilus, Nemo and Caja).

It does handle QR codes.

  • 1
    merci de la recommendation, ca marche pile poil. Domo arigatu !
    – nicolas
    Aug 27, 2015 at 10:38
  • Syncthing supports QR-codes for quite a while now... and the "Ubuntu indicator" (syncthing-gtk) integrates also in the file manager (Nautilus, Nemo and Caja). Feb 2, 2018 at 6:00
  • @DJCrashdummy: I edited to include your feedback, is it correct? Thanks!
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Feb 5, 2018 at 3:03
  • @NicolasRaoul: well... syncthing-gtk is not just an - like you resp. the OP call it - "Ubuntu indicator", it is a cross-platform GUI with all the features of the WebGUI plus some additional like filesystem-watching/instant-sync, desktop-notifications, filemanager-integration for nautilus, nemo & caja, etc. - the updates in the article/link (which is good, because they provide the advised debs/ppa by the devs) you provide also sum it up pretty good. Feb 5, 2018 at 8:35

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