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Dropbox is deleting all my files

Dropbox is deleting all my files

Jscott1000
Helpful | Level 5

My dropbox was working okay until for no reason it's broken.  When I drag files (photos) into my camera upload folder on my computer they are uploaded into the cloud and then are immediately deleted from the cloud and my computer.  I am able to recover them from the deleted files folder but have no idea why they are being deleted in the first place. 

 

Edit to add the same problem exists when I take a picture with my phone.  Picture is uploaded to the cloud.  Picture downloads to my Camera Uploads folder and then is immediately deleted from the cloud and camera uploads folder.  I am able to recover it from the deleted files folder but have no idea why it's being deleted in the first place. 

 

I have a single computer running windows 8.1, not using selective sync on the camera uploads folder.  I have no idea why this is happening.  In the current state it's unreliable and basically unusable for it's intended purpose to have an online copy of my photos.

11 Replies 11

Re: Dropbox is deleting all my files

Rich
Super User II

Dropbox isn't deleting your files. It's not capable of doing so. Only you, another service on your computer or another device linked to your account is able to initiate a deletion. Look at the Previous Version History for one of the files after you've restored it. It should show you where the deletion is originating from.

Re: Dropbox is deleting all my files

Jscott1000
Helpful | Level 5

I understand the standard response that Dropbox is incapable of deleting files on it's own, but I respectfully disagree.  You will have to explain to me under what conditions a service or different device on my account can press the delete button by itself then.  What reason would my computer initiate a deletion all by itself.  I uploaded files to my Camera upload folder and watched them instantly be deleted right before my eyes and I didn't do it so who did??

 

Unfortunately I am unable to troubleshoot further as my computer crashed right after I started troubleshooting this problem and won't even boot up anymore.  Who knows maybe my computer was infected and someone in Russia was deleting my files?  I give up. 

Re: Dropbox is deleting all my files

Mark
Super User II
Something or somebody on your account did.

The usual suspects are Dropbox installed on an external or USB / network drive, Dropbox set up with Symlinks or junctions.

Or its possible that actually it was a virus which was deleting the files to re-add them with mal/spam/ransomware. The more recent viruses 'delete' the old ones and 'add' new infected ones rather than just editing them. More likely as your machine has now crashed....

 


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Re: Dropbox is deleting all my files

Jscott1000
Helpful | Level 5
I did as you suggested and looked at version history and my files were deleted by my desktop computer 1 minute after they were downloaded from the cloud. Dropbox was not installed on an external or network drive and I dont even know what that other thing you mentioned is. One computer, one phone very vanilla setup but somehow my computer was deleting files instantly by itself. Nothing was being replaced. Was it a virus or Dropbox performing impossible deletes? This computer is dead so the mystery cannot be solved.

Re: Dropbox is deleting all my files

Jscott1000
Helpful | Level 5
By the way, I forgot to thank you for helping. My computer crash was made infinitely less painful by my use of the Dropbox. I loaded dropbox on a second computer and all my day to day files are accessible and intact after synchronization.

Re: Dropbox is deleting all my files

Jane
Dropboxer
 
Please bear in mind that Dropbox is just a syncing tool and doesn't delete your files without your input. Other applications may not play well with Dropbox though, so there might be unexpected behavior. 
 
To help narrow down the causes, I'd like to ask you a couple of questions to help determine the case! 
 
  • Are the deletions occurring from a specific device? 
  • Is the number of files added identical to the number of deletions (eg. 9 files added & 9 files deleted)? 
  • Have you tried force quiting any background processes that may be interfering and re-attempted the upload? 
  • As an additional step, please keep in mind that maybe your antivirus is acting up. Please disable it and try uploading your files once again and let me know if you still experience the same behavior. 
Looking forward to hearing back from you! 
 
Thanks, 
JaneA

 


Jane
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
dropbox.com/support

 

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Re: Dropbox is deleting all my files

Jscott1000
Helpful | Level 5

Hi JaneA,

 

I can answer some of yor questions, but coincidently my computer crashed and I have not been able to restart it. 

 

  • Are the deletions occurring from a specific device?  - Yes my desktop computer was 100% of the time consistently deleting any file added to my dropbox Camera uploads folder within seconds of it being added.
  • Is the number of files added identical to the number of deletions (eg. 9 files added & 9 files deleted)? Yes, file added = file deleted if the file was downloaded from the cloud it was deleted instantly.  If I copied the file onto the desktop computer it was deleted as soon as it was uploaded.
  • Have you tried force quiting any background processes that may be interfering and re-attempted the upload? No I was not able to try that.
  • As an additional step, please keep in mind that maybe your antivirus is acting up. Please disable it and try uploading your files once again and let me know if you still experience the same behavior.  I was not able to try that either.

I'm not an IT expert just a person that has been messing with computers for 25 years or so, but I have never seen a computer delete files by itself. 

 

I really don't understand the notion that Dropbox is incapable of deleting files.  It absolutely deletes files, but as you say it won't do that without input from somewhere.  I have no idea what was triggering my computer to delete files on its own. 

Re: Dropbox is deleting all my files

Darren S.1
Collaborator | Level 10

The fact your PC died at the same time can't be coincidence. If not a virus or other malware, then it's possibly a hardware failure causing all this. A dying hard drive could cause files to disappear which would look to Dropbox like a deletion. It's hard to say without more information.

Re: Dropbox is deleting all my files

Jane
Dropboxer
Hey @Jscott1000
 
Oh no! Sorry to hear about your crashing computer. 
 
As Darren mentioned previously, probably your computer caused your files to disappear without your input. I‘d just like to let you know that, once you fix your device and check the possible causes, we’re here for you to continue troubleshooting. 
 
The most possible scenario is what Darren mentioned, though I’d be glad to have a look into that with you through our official support channel. Please log a ticket with our team and let me know a ticket ID here once you have done so in your reply here, so that I look it up internally on our system.
 
Hope you get your pc fixed soon, looking forward to a ticket ID, so that we have this clarified together. 
 
Warm regards, 
JaneA

 


Jane
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
dropbox.com/support

 

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