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Dropbox Log Files

Dropbox Log Files

td47
Helpful | Level 6
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While looking for something else on my 2 Windows 10 PC's, I noticed that there are several hundred log files located at the path:

C:\ProgramData\Dropbox\Update\Log

 

These range from 2018 dates to current, and sizes from 800K to 2K. As these are NOT normal text files, and I cannot see any options within the Dropbox program itself to read these, please explain what their function is. As  see NO sync issues, I assume that I can get rid of them, as it seems pointless keeping them, unless of course there is some sort of "telemetry" that Dropbox is doing, that we, as users do NOT KNOW ABOUT?

 

It would be really useful if your product had an option to delete this "log history", say over 1, 3, 6 or 12 months old files, in a user setting, to stop this unnecessary clutter.

34 Replies 34

Walter
Dropbox Staff
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Hey @SuzanneT1, sorry to hear you're having issues with this.

 

Can you send us a screenshot of the error you're getting and also clarify what kind of files you're trying to delete and from where exactly? 

 

Thanks so much!


Walter
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
dropbox.com/support


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SuzanneT1
Explorer | Level 3
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I’m not sure how to attach my screenshot. Please explain how to attach a pic from my camera. I’m trying to delete log files.

SuzanneT1
Explorer | Level 3
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Sorry - I first responded on my cell phone.  Now I'm responding on my laptop.  this is a pic of the error trying to delete the log files.

 

SuzanneT1_0-1660739926447.png

 

Rich
Super User II
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@SuzanneT1 wrote:
I have all the permissions to delete files but the message says “You need permission to perform this action”.

Then you don't have the necessary permissions to delete the files. See my replies earlier in this thread about admins and the SYSTEM account. You may be the admin for your computer, but the SYSTEM account used by Windows is higher than an admin, and it's this account that has the only access to these files.

 


I need these files deleted.

You can delete them, but you need to do some work on the file permissions before you'll be able to. See my replies above.

SuzanneT1
Explorer | Level 3
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I did read your statement and this is a copy of the system permissions.  Is there anything else I should review:

 

[removed]

 

Rich
Super User II
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@SuzanneT1 wrote:

I did read your statement and this is a copy of the system permissions.


I removed your screenshot because it shows your full name and email address (or so it appears).

 

That screenshot is showing the permissions of your Dropbox icon (to launch the application); not the location of the log files. You need to do that same thing on the Log folder that contains all the log files, then you'll see that only the System account has access.

SuzanneT1
Explorer | Level 3
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Okay - I selected the permissions on the log folder.  My laptop has permissions.  But if I give the permissions to the user - i get this error

SuzanneT1_0-1660742371698.png

 

Rich
Super User II
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@SuzanneT1 wrote:

Okay - I selected the permissions on the log folder.  My laptop has permissions.  But if I give the permissions to the user - i get this error


You're trying to change the permissions on the Update folder (and everything it contains), but it's failing to update the permissions on the Log folder and all of the log files because you don't have permissions to do so. You need to take ownership of not only the folder, but all the files within it, before you can change the permissions.

 

Quite honestly, if this isn't something you understand or are comfortable with, then you should just leave it be. You can break things if you apply the wrong permissions to certain files or folders, and this really goes beyond the scope of the support provided here. There's very little data stored here and none of it is human-readable. If this is an attempt to save disk space, you're not going to gain much space at all from deleting the log files.

SuzanneT1
Explorer | Level 3
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I do understand permissions. I have an IT background but I’ve never run into a app like this. It does not matter if it’s the update folder the log folder or the log files. It will not let me have permissions. So last question. If I uninstall this app will these files go away.

Rich
Super User II
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@SuzanneT1 wrote:
... I’ve never run into a app like this. ... If I uninstall this app will these files go away.

I don't know if Dropbox will clean up the files during an uninstall, and to be clear, it's not Dropbox that's doing this; it's your operating system.

 

Dropbox has services that run in the background, like many other applications, and these services need a user account in order to run. In most cases, you're not going to create a separate user just to run a service (though some apps do), so Windows runs these services under the System user. Since the service runs as System, it's System that owns and has permissions to any files created by the service.

 

Take ownership of all the files so System doesn't own them, change the permissions on all the files so you have at least Modify access, and then you'll be able to delete them.

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