I just set up an Ubuntu server this afternoon and configured samba. I got it working and with Wifi and ethernet connected to my MacBook from that Ubuntu computer I got crazy fast speeds because it was using the crossover cable to transfer files instead of the wifi connection.

I've had the same samba setup on my pi for a while but I've always been using wifi to transfer files, which is horribly slow for samba, so when I decided to try and connect my Raspberry Pi's ethernet cable and wifi to my Macbook it didnt work. (I already turned off hotplugging which prevents wlan0 from starting when eth0 is connected, in /etc/default/ifplugd)
After a while I was able to connect to my pi, had the ethernet cable plugged in but still the transfers were going over wifi instead of ethernet which again results in horribly slow transfer times.

Can anyone help me figure out how to use both wifi and ethernet and make my macbook actually use the ethernet cable to transfer files instead of wifi, so I can just use wifi for my iPad etc.

Thanks in advance

Contents of my /etc/default/ifplugd:

ARGS="-q -f -u0 -d10 -w -I"

Contents of my /etc/network/interfaces:

auto wlan0

iface lo inet loopback
iface eth0 inet dhcp

allow-hotplug wlan0
iface wlan0 inet dhcp
wpa-conf /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf
iface default inet dhcp

1 Answer 1


You have several questions above.

Firstly, just plugging an ethernet cable into the Macbook won't work. The ethernet won't have an IP address (as can be verified by ifconfig on the Mac). There are ways to make it work, but the easiest is just to plug the Pi's ethernet into your router.

Secondly, don't use SAMBA. This is a Windows protocol, and while Linux has an implementation, the protocol has problems. You would be better to use NFS which is natively supported by 'NIX.

Thirdly, it depends on exactly what you are trying to achieve. If the goal is to transfer files between the Pi and Macbook you could install netatalk on the Pi and use afp to connect between the two; this also gives you zeroconf as a bonus.

I suggest you revise your question and possibly break it up into discrete parts after you decide what you are trying to achieve.

PS You will never get the same speeds on a Pi. Your Mac and Ubuntu are probably using Gigabit ethernet. All Pi data goes through the bottleneck of the USB controller.

  • AFP proved to be very instable and slwoer than Samba. I'd want to go with NFS, but don't think the cmd + k menu has support for that in Finder. I'm just having a hard time to understand why it worked on the ubuntu without configuration and the pi keeps giving problems for this. Zeroconf is also available for smb btw.
    – thibmaek
    Aug 29, 2015 at 10:34
  • 1
    Technically, it's SMB that's the MS protocol; Samba (not an acronym) is a FOSS implementation of it used on POSIX-y systems like GNU/Linux, OSX, BSD, Solaris, etc.
    – goldilocks
    Sep 28, 2015 at 2:41
  • @goldilocks True, and I am aware of this, but including a lot of pedantic detail won't help the questioner.
    – Milliways
    Sep 28, 2015 at 2:46

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