Blueman

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Blueman is a full featured Bluetooth manager written in GTK+.

Related articles

Installation

Warning: Blueman currently relies on the, now unmaintained, Bluez4 stack. A version of Blueman that is compatible with Bluez5 is in development. [1]

Blueman can be installed from the blueman-bzrAUR package in the AUR.

Be sure to enable the Bluetooth daemon and start Blueman with blueman-applet.

Tip: If you want to mount and browse remote devices, you may need to install the gvfs-obexftp-bluez4AUR package from the AUR.

Usage

Checking the Bluetooth hardware

Be sure the local Bluetooth device is availabe by running hcitool dev. If only Devices: is dumped, the local Bluetooth device is unavailable. If this is the case, try restarting the bluetooth service or toggle the WiFi/Bluetooth switch on your laptop (if it exists). For example: the switch is Fn+F3 on an Acer Aspire laptop. Also try rebooting to activate the local Bluetooth device. If you run blueman-applet without an available local Bluetooth device, the Blueman tray icon will not appear.

Autostarting

The following autostart file should have been created: /etc/xdg/autostart/blueman.desktop. This means that Blueman should be autostarted with most desktop environments without manual intervention. See the article for your desktop environment or window manager as well as the Autostarting article for further information on autostarting.

Permissions

It might be necessary for the user to be added to the lp group in order for the user to be able to add and manage Bluetooth devices using Blueman. See /etc/dbus-1/system.d/bluetooth.conf for the section that enables users of the lp group to communicate with the Bluetooth daemon.

To receive files remember to right click on the Blueman tray icon > Local Services > Transfer > File Receiving" and tick the square box next to "Enabled".

Note: If you are running Blueman in a session that is started with the startx command, you should add source /etc/X11/xinit/xinitrc.d/* to your ~/.xinitrc to make Nautilus capable of browsing your devices.

Mounting Bluetooth devices without Nautilus

Blueman is configured to use Nautilus for bluetooth device mounting by default. The instructions below describe a method for using different file managers with Blueman. The examples in this section focus on Thunar. If you are using a different file manager, substitute thunar with the name of the file manager you are using.

obex_thunar.sh
#!/bin/bash
fusermount -u ~/bluetooth
obexfs -b $1 ~/bluetooth
thunar ~/bluetooth

Now you will need to move the script to an appropriate location (e.g., /usr/local/bin). After that, mark it as executable:

# chmod +x /usr/local/bin/obex_thunar.sh

The last step is to change the line in Blueman tray icon > Local Services > Transfer > Advanced to obex_thunar.sh %d.

Tip: If you do not want to create a script, you could just replace this command: nautilus --browse obex:// with this one: thunar obex:// in Local Services > Transfer > Advanced

Blueman and PulseAudio

Users who want to use PulseAudio with a Bluetooth headset may want to activate the PulseAudio plugin of Blueman. This automatically loads PulseAudio Bluetooth module after audio device is connected and plays all audio through the Bluetooth headset.

Troubleshooting

Workaround for a Bug with obex and gvfs

Note: This bug only affects older versions of Blueman.

To browse a mobile phone using Nautilus and Blueman you will need a patched version of GVFS (The GNOME Virtual File System.) Install gvfs-rarAUR from AUR. It is possible that you will need to rebuild the obex-data-serverAUR package as shown below:

$ ./configure --prefix=/usr --sysconfdir=/etc

Cannot receive files

If you cannot receive files with Blueman, edit the /etc/conf.d/bluetooth file and uncomment this line:

#SDPD_ENABLE="true"

Blueman applet does not start

If blueman-applet fails to start, try removing the entire /var/lib/bluetooth directory and restarting the machine (or just the dbus and bluetooth services).

# rm -rf /var/lib/bluetooth
$ systemctl reboot

If you see a notification saying Incoming file over Bluetooth then this means that the device isn't marked as trusted. Mark it as trusted and try sending the file again.

See also