My connection configuration is, my modem, connected to a LAN router, connected to several PCs and also connected to a wireless router. When I use WiFi on my android device, I can access files on the PCs using ES file explorer. However, I can't access my android device from any of the PCs. I tried using File Expert, but failed (I suspect it's because it is from LAN PC trying to connect to WiFi).

I also have the same problem if I want to transfer files from my WiFi connected laptop to any of the PCs (in this case I cannot find any of the PC at all from my laptop). I tried to google a solution but can't find any case which is similar to mine.

  • Is file sharing enabled between the two pcs ?
    – HackToHell
    Commented Mar 23, 2013 at 13:48
  • yes. when connected using wired connection my laptop is able to see and access the PC
    – denshao
    Commented Mar 23, 2013 at 22:17
  • It sounds like your network has 2 routers, one behind the other. In this case the things attached to one router wouldn't necessarily be aware of or able to connect to the things connected to the other router. The 2 network segments would be unaware of each other. If the WIFI router were just turned into an access point, then both the LAN and Wifi would be on the same segment and be able to communicate.
    – killermist
    Commented Mar 28, 2013 at 1:55
  • Voting to close because this is an Android question. However, to be helpful, to share files from an Android over the phone like a PC over Wifi (NOT cellular), you need to be running a Samba server - and your phone needs to be rooted - I've had good luck with this app: play.google.com/store/apps/…
    – LawrenceC
    Commented Mar 28, 2013 at 3:07

5 Answers 5


It's simple to share Android files to Windows PC. Install ES File Explorer in Android device. Go to Tools and select Remote Manager then you can see turn on. Press on it. And you will get an address like enter it on your PC file explorer and you can access to your Android phone from PC.

You can change settings of remote manager to get SD card and phone memory.

  • as of May 2017, it no longer has this feature unless you buy the unlock
    – simpleuser
    Commented May 23, 2017 at 23:30
  • April 11th, 2020 - ES File Explorer lets me connect to my Pixel 2 from my computer. Connecting to my computer from my phone is a paid feature.
    – Shadoninja
    Commented Apr 11, 2020 at 19:48

I don't know if it will help but give a shot to Airdroid, it let's you transfer files from android device to pc, connected over the same network back and forth. If the problem is not so complicated, this thing will handle it.

  • As of Jan. 2024 this is a paid feature above 200MB. Commented Jan 9 at 12:03

WiFi File Transfer https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.smarterdroid.wififiletransfer

Droid Over WiFi https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.dmitril.droidoverwifi

  • 1
    It would be best if a brief description and the usage of these apps is provided, as why should one bother to click through your links unless knowing that it would help. Please edit and add the info.
    – Firelord
    Commented Jun 30, 2015 at 20:20
  • @Firelord well they are much a better use then all other answers :D Commented Dec 10, 2016 at 0:25

There's a couple of different things going on here. The latter part of your question, the laptop-to-PC issue, is likely as you suspect — because the laptop is on a separate LAN from the desktops (each router being its own local network), neither side can browse for computers on the other. You very likely could access the wired PCs from your laptop, if you connected to them directly by IP address. (Say, by entering \\\ into the Windows Explorer address bar, if that was the IP assigned to one of your desktops.) It's merely the browsing and discovery functions which don't work, since they're confined to the immediate LAN.

Not being able to browse for the files on your Android phone, though, is an entirely different issue: You can't remotely access the files on an Android phone, because Android phones don't do Windows file sharing — at least not by default. Most likely, with your stock phone as configured by the manufacturer, the only way to remotely access its files is over Bluetooth from a paired computer.

ES File Explorer knows how to speak Windows file sharing as a client, so it's able to connect to the files shared on your PCs. But to go the other direction, you need to install an app on your phone that'll act as a Windows file sharing server. I'm sure there are several choices available in Google Play. (However, you should think twice or more before doing something like that. Opening up remote network access to your phone's files carries serious hacking and privacy dangers. It's not something to undertake casually.)

  • The issue with computer reachability isn't really an issue of "wifi" vs. "wired", by the way — it's the fact that in your setup, those two networks are managed by separate routers. Many "internet gateway" devices provide both wireless and wired connectivity in a single router. Typically all of the attached devices (wired or wireless) will be able to see each other, because it's all treated as one big local network.
    – FeRD
    Commented Mar 23, 2013 at 14:28
  • so are you saying that using my existing setup, i can't access my PC through my laptop on wifi?
    – denshao
    Commented Mar 23, 2013 at 22:20
  • i also tried using IP address in the address bar method and it didn't work
    – denshao
    Commented Mar 23, 2013 at 22:28
  • just to be clear, my connection is like this: modem -> LAN router -> wifi router/few PC
    – denshao
    Commented Mar 23, 2013 at 22:36
  • Yeah, sorry, that was my error — and I even used an example IP that should have clued me in! Dumb. The problem is that many local networks live behind NAT routers, so hosts don't have public IPs. The IP blocks 192.168.___.___, 10.___.___.___, and 172.{16-31}.___.___ (nobody ever uses the third) are the PRIVATE address space, and are explicitly non-routable. So, a computer can only be reached at that address from within its local network. There are services like GoToMyPC that work around this, using public servers to relay. Straight Windows sharing, tho, can't do it.
    – FeRD
    Commented Mar 25, 2013 at 22:13

Use TeamViewer, the best tool also for other things (e.g. remote control of PC from Android device).

  • 1
    If possible, please add a Google Play link to the app you mentioned.
    – geffchang
    Commented Jan 21, 2014 at 15:56

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