How to use an Android phone to access the Internet on a computer without Wi-Fi in Linux
February 22, 2022
In the article “How to share mobile Internet with other phones and computers”, we already talked about how to use a mobile phone as an Access Point, but what if the computer does not have a Wi-Fi adapter or drivers are not installed for it?
This article is devoted to the answer to this question – it tells how to connect a computer to the mobile Internet using a USB cable.
In fact, this method is even simpler than creating a mobile hotspot.
How to Use Android Phone as USB Tethering in Linux
As you can see in the screenshot, the computer does not have an Internet connection.
Start by connecting your phone to your computer with a USB cable.
Then go to the settings of your phone, this can be done by unrolling the curtain from top to bottom and clicking the gear icon.
Further, the name of the settings items may differ on different phone models, but the essence will be the same everywhere.
Go to the “Connections” section.
Find the item “Mobile Hotspot and Tethering” there.
Turn on “USB tethering”.
Everything is ready – now your computer is online and can connect to the Internet. You can install Wi-Fi drivers or perform other network actions that you need.
No additional configuration is required on the computer. Now the computer is connected to the network – the USB tethering connection has a wired connection icon.
What to do if the USB modem item is not active or missing
The USB modem item may be inactive in two cases:
- The phone is not connected to the computer with a USB cable.
- USB cable does not support data transfer
Try another USB cable – the one that came with the phone should support data transfer.
Things to remember when using a mobile phone for the Internet
- Please note that if the phone is not connected to Wi-Fi, then mobile data will be used – if you do not have an unlimited data plan, then this will cost you money.
- You can connect your phone to a Wi-Fi network and still use it as a USB modem. The result is that your computer is using Wi-Fi through your phone, and not mobile data.
- If, when you turn on the USB modem, there is still no Internet access on the computer, then check if other network connections are disabled: for example, via Wi-Fi or by wire, the computer can be connected to a router that does not have Internet (disabled for non-payment or damaged cable).
- If you disconnect the phone from the USB cable, and then connect it to the computer again, you will need to turn USB tethering on again in the phone each time
- While the mobile phone is operating as a USB modem, you cannot send and receive files from it
How to enable file transfer between computer and phone
When the USB modem is enabled, it is not possible to exchange files between the computer and the phone.
In order to make it possible to copy files, you can disconnect the phone from the computer, and then reconnect and, when asked for permission to transfer files, provide it.
Another option is to disable the USB modem and enable data transfer (or only charging) in the phone settings without disconnecting it from the USB cable. To do this, open the curtain and expand the notification “USB tethering turned on”.
Click to configure the USB connection to the corresponding label.
Instead of “USB tethering” select “USB tethering” or “Charging phone only”.
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