How to wirelessly access HTC EVO root file system from your computer

Root-ftp-evo

Now that we all know how to wirelessly manage our HTC EVO 4G microSD cards from our computers, let's take it a step further and access the file system with root privileges in the same way.

Just as in the microSD card tutorial, all we're going to do here is install an FTP server app on the EVO and then map it as a network drive using Windows Explorer; the only difference is that instead of using Rapfox's free FTP Server, we're going to use waterdev's paid Root FTP Server. The app is less than $5 in the Market and while there may be cheaper alternatives out there, this is the one I use.

If you're already using Root Explorer (one of G&E's must-have root apps) or some other root file manager on your EVO, then think of Root FTP Server as a wireless version that grants you the same access from a computer over WiFi.

Note: The method below will only work when the EVO and computer are connected to the same WiFi network or tethered to each other (i.e., you need a static URL). If you're on a 3G or 4G connection, then you'll need to use a standard FTP client on your computer.

1. Root your EVO (tutorial here) if you haven't already done so.

2. Grab Root FTP Server ($4.86) from the Market:

Root-ftp-qr

Links: Market (EVO) | Market (web)

3. Open the app on your EVO, tap the Change username button to change the username to whatever you want, then tap OK. Your username will act as your password, so keep it to yourself (or broadcast it publicly on a website like I've done and then just change it later).

4. Tap the box next to "Also make / and /system writable" to enable it and then press Start. Installation will most likely fail the first time, so just keep pressing Start until it succeeds (I had to do it three times). Once it's installed, tap Start again to actually start the server.

5. Once the status shows "running," go to Windows Explorer/Computer on your computer and click the "Map a Network Drive" button at the top. Follow the on-screen prompts to map the drive. The steps will vary depending on which version of Windows you're using, but here's what you do in Windows 7:

  • Select a drive letter.
  • Click "Connect to a Web site that you can use to store your documents and pictures," which launches the Add Network Location wizard.
  • Click Next > Choose a custom network location > Next.
  • Type "ftp://your username@URL shown in Root FTP Server" (e.g., ftp://[email protected]) and follow the rest of the prompts.

6. When it's set up correctly, your new drive will appear in Windows Explorer/Computer.

Evo-root-ftp

As you can see, I named my drive "EVOroot" to differentiate it from the drive I set up for my EVO's microSD card.  Root FTP Server includes access to the card, of course, but I just like to keep it separate (i.e., Rapfox for card only, Root FTP for root directory only).

7. Now whenever you want to get to the root folders and files on your EVO, all you have to do is start Root FTP Server on your EVO and open the newly mapped network drive on your computer. When you're done, just tap the Stop button in the app.

Evo-root-ftp2

Evo-root-ftp3

You can manage each folder's permissions from your computer (right-click folder > Properties), transfer files between the EVO and your PC, and basically just explore everything on a bigger screen with a keyboard and mouse.

Root FTP Server also works over USB, although that kind of undermines the whole wireless thing I'm going for here.

Thanks, Gary!

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Jenn K. Lee

Jenn K. Lee is the founder of Pocketables. She loves gadgets the way most women love shoes and purses. The pieces in her tech wardrobe that go with everything are currently the Samsung Galaxy Note II, Sony Tablet P, and Nexus 7, but there are still a couple of vintage UMPCs/MIDs in the back of her closet.

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