Local-only setup

Hi, I’m totally new to Syncthing, I’m trying to use it instead of BitTorrent Sync.

I would like to use it in order to sync my devices only when they are on the same local network, in order to have every information about them and my files to remain only in the local network, and never make it leave it in any way. I disabled the global discovery and the redirection on all of my devices, is it sufficient to have a completely local system or should I set up something else?

Thanks in advance!

Only start them when they are in the local network. You can’t prevent others knowing that you run syncthing when you are outside of your local network, unless you stop it.

Thanks for the answer. What if I set it on an Android device to be always in the background but to start only when connected to my home WiFi connection? It should be the same, right? Can I be sure that the files will never go through public networks?

Well if you only leave local discovery, the devices will only find each other when they are part of the same local network.

And yes, setting up android that way should stop syncthing from running which should prevent you from being identified as running it.

Thanks a lot!

Just one last question: is there a way to make this work when the Android device (a smartphone) is connected to a WiFi network which is “created” by a computer (e.g.: using something like Connectify)? In this configuration the smartphone is connected to a network which, even if created by the computer itself, is different from the one to which the computer is connected.

The goal is to sync the files on the smartphone when there is only a cable connection available (or even no internet connection at all, since it works locally).

There is no wifi controls on the desktop app, on the mobile app you whitelist network names.

If you connect to some external network with your laptop, the fact that you use syncthing can still be checked, unless you use some sort of automation framework on the desktop to automate killing syncthing when it’s not on some network.

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I’m sorry, I didn’t explain well what I was trying to say. Yes, I set up an automation framework that turns on and off Syncthing depending on the connected network on the notebook and now others won’t be able to see I’m using Syncthing, but I wasn’t referring to this.

Where I live there is only a cable connection, the use of routers is banned and I use something similiar to Connectify in order to have a WiFi connection for my smartphone. In this setup, Syncthing won’t work because: 1- I disabled the global discovery and redirection, since I want a local-only Syncthing system. 2- The network to which the smartphone is connected, even if it is created by the notebook, isn’t the same to which the notebook itself is connected, since it is to the cable connection.

I was asking if there is a way to keep the system local-only and make the synchronization happen even in this setup.

It might not work on that case, as the devices have to be on the same subnet for local discovery to work, but syncthing tries to advertise discovery packets over all available interfaces, so if the wifi network you set up happens to look like a new network interface on the notebook, it should be fine.

Alternatively, you could hardcode the IP addresses for each of the devices if you know they won’t change


Tried that configuration in the night, the two devices did find each other and shared files correctly even if connected to different subnets.

Thanks a lot for all of your answers, very appreciated!

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