❄️ I have a Moto G6, running Android 9 (specifically PPSS29., Security Patch Level Oct 1,2019)❄️ and when I connect it via USB I have an option (under USB Preferences) to "Use USB for ... File Transfer" which is selected.

The "Use USB for" options that I see are these:

  • File Transfer
  • USB Tethering
  • MIDI
  • PTP
  • No data transfer

With "File Transfer" selected, the phone appears as an external drive on my desktop (Ubuntu 18.04.3 LTS) but I can't move anything on or off it and the mounted drive shows no directories and my desktop properties say that "Permissions could not be determined".

I installed mtp-tools as suggested in answer to phone mounts as media device not usb storage but that didn't change anything.

I'm not even sure what "MIDI" is for, but with MIDI selected, I don't even see my phone mounted as a drive.

If I select "Use USB for ... PTP" I can mount the DCIM and Pictures directories. I was able to drop an MP3 into my Pictures directory and then use the Files app to move it to the Music directory, but that's a poor substitute for actually mounting it and moving files back and forth. It does confirm that the issue isn't the cable (as in this 2013 question: How do I mount my phone?)

I read through two questions that were solved by enabling USB Debugging: How to get USB file transfer working on Oreo 8.1? and Android Pie only showing two folders to Android File Transfer but that didn't work for me. (Note, in 9.0 you have to find your Build in the System Settings and tap it 7 times to even access developer settings. From there you can enable USB Debugging).

Any new and different tips for mounting my Android 9.0 so I can transfer files to and from it?

  • If you have the PTP option you should also have the MPT one, don't you?. The latter is for accessing everything else but the DCIM folder.
    – user276392
    Commented Dec 16, 2019 at 23:09
  • I believe that the "File Transfer" option is MPT. But I updated to list the options that I see.
    – Amanda
    Commented Dec 16, 2019 at 23:52
  • Maybe, maybe not... Any current Android should work with MTP/PTP (last time I saw the former method - mass storage device - available was in an old tablet running 4.4.4) but it's possible that for some weird reason Motorola decided to use it partially and enabled the old way as well, I don't know. Anyway, it should work as well in any desktop OS.
    – user276392
    Commented Dec 17, 2019 at 0:12
  • "File Transfer" is MTP which is handled by GVfs on Ubuntu. Make sure relevant packages are installed. Or you may mount it as drive using mtpfs. Another option to mount as drive is adbfs which uses adb. MTP has always been buggy, so better try not wasting time with it. Go with one of many other available options. Commented Dec 17, 2019 at 3:14
  • @IrfanLatif can you expand on those options? I just confirmed that gvfs is definitely installed, so that's not the issue.
    – Amanda
    Commented Dec 17, 2019 at 23:59


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