I'd like to be able to push PDF files onto a phone/tablet with a Bash script. Is it possible to transfer data using scp (or even rsync) from a Linux computer to an Android phone over wireless?

Could I even run Unison on the phone?

And is it possible to run Bash (or only POSIX Shell) scripts on the phone remotely?

2 Answers 2


Many things are possible. Installing an SSH Server app (e.g. SSHelper or DigiSSHD / SSH Server) would give you the possibility to login via ssh, or remote-copy via scp.

Terminal IDE (available only for Android 4.4 and earlier, according to the app description) gives you a quite complete package, even including the famous Midnight Commander, and a lot more useful tools:

javac, java, dx, proguard, aapt, apkbuilder, signer, ssh, sshd, telnetd, bash 4.2, busybox 1.19.2, vim 7.3, nano 2.2.6, midnight commander 4.8, htop 1.0, TMUX 1.5, rsync 3.0.8, git 1.7.8, BitchX 1.1 and a nice terminal emulator are all available.

(emphasis are introduced by me to pick the items your question was for)

So except for Unison, the latter package should cover your needs :)

  • Vim, htop and git are also very nice. Thanks! Commented Jan 20, 2013 at 9:19
  • Yepp, exactly! Side-effect is: you get a complete development environment on your Android :) But it will make up a couple of MB, naturally...
    – Izzy
    Commented Jan 20, 2013 at 11:03
  • @MateuszKonieczny thanks! Couldn't know that back then :)
    – Izzy
    Commented May 25, 2017 at 11:29

For your first question. I use the OASVN Android client to pull PDF files to my droid from my private Windows based SVN server. Works Great!! I used rsync before and would favored the SVN solution over rsync. NetApp's FX File Manager Plus handles the SFTP protocol over wireless and will cost you $2 for a license.

  • I took the freedom to add a link to OASVN. Not sure for FX -- do you mean File Explorer (Plus Add-On)?
    – Izzy
    Commented Apr 8, 2013 at 23:10
  • 1
    It would be nice to have a concrete example using rsync here (as it is available via Terminal IDE) Commented Nov 11, 2013 at 21:19

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