cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Announcements
Update: Find information on Dropbox support during COVID-19 here
Close
cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Highlighted

Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Helpful | Level 7

Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Windows 8.1
Dropbox Plus 89.4.278 Using 19% of space (383.1 GB of 2 TB)

10 days ago I reorganised the data in the Dropbox folder on my laptop.  All my data is in my Dropbox folder.  After I reorganised my data I have 233,345 files in 15,949 folders, all in the Dropbox folder.

Dropbox says it is syncing, and then it says it is indexing, but that is not true. For 10 days it has made no progress - it says it is syncing about 352,000 files but nothing is being synced. I checked by logging into my Dropbox online. There is no doubt - Dropbox has not successfuly synced anything for 10 days.

I tried closing Dropbox ("End Process" in Task Manager) and re-starting but this did not help. I have re-started Dropbox twice but it is still not syncing.

I tried to clear the Dropbox cache (D:\Dropbox\.dropbox.cache) but both new_files and old_files are empty so I think the cache is empty.

What next - any ideas please?

 

1 Accepted Solution

Accepted Solutions
Highlighted

Re: Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Helpful | Level 7

During the last week my Dropbox was visibly syncing data and I think my problem has been resolved. I'm posting this in case anyone else reads this thread in the future.

First, I want to thank Daphne and John at Dropbox for their support. I was genuinely supported, my problem was escalated, and I never felt that Dropbox had dumped me to sort things out by myself.

I think that the cause of my problem was possibly this. On 24 January 2020 I carried out a housekeeping exercise on my laptop, which runs on Windows 8.1. This involved moving some folders at the top of my folder tree, renaming others, and moving some sub-folders to other folders. I described this in my first post in this thread. The task took very little time on my machine because as most people know when one "moves" and renames folders on a Windows OS the actual data doesn't change, only the tags which tell the OS where each folder and file are. At least that is how I understand it. I think the Dropbox algorithms misunderstood what I had done and proceeded to delete folders which were no longer in their original places and then upload the contents of the folders in their new locations as if this was fresh data. In other words the simple task which took a short time on my laptop and didn't involve any real movement of data was transformed by Dropbox into a mammoth task requiring, probably, the uploading of almost the entire contents of my Dropbox folder, currently a total of 15,972 Folders, 234,212 Files,  and 380gB of data. In fact for some time Dropbox told me it was trying to synchronise about 352,000 files which I assume was made up of both "deletions" and "new" files.

What made the problem worse for me was that Dropbox never told me what it was doing or why it was appearing to simply not sync. I never got a message such as 'You have deleted and created large amounts of data - it will take some time for your Dropbox to be synchronised'. All I saw was the many days that had apparently elapsed since the last synchronisation and an apparently static, ineffective program that was doing nothing at all. There was nothing to show that Dropbox was working overtime behind the scenes trying to replicate my new folder structure and the data it contains. And using large amounts of bandwith in the process.

I suppose this thread should now be marked as "solved" although all this means is that I know what happened. Even with this knowledge I couldn't intervene to help the process on its way. If my upload speed had been worse, or my bandwidth usage had been capped, I might have been in real trouble.

If my diagosis is right the lesson seems to be that when you set your Dropbox folder up you need to think carefully about the structure of your data within it, and try not to make major changes in the arrangement of your folders or their names.

View solution in original post

19 Replies 19
Highlighted

Re: Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Dropboxer
Dropboxer

Hi @Michael000, let's see if we can get to the bottom of this issue!

As a first step, can you check out this post here to see if this does the trick? This will resolve any issues with incorrect file permissions that could cause syncing to be stuck.

If this doesn't do the trick and get the sync progressing, can you click on the Dropbox icon in your system tray and let me know if there are any errors showing in the sync status.

Let me know and we can take it from there!


Daphne
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support


Heart Did this post help you? If so, please give it a Like below.
Still stuck? Ask me a question!
Tips & Tricks Find new ways to stay in flow or share your tips on how you work smarter with Dropbox.

Highlighted

Re: Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Helpful | Level 7

Hi Daphne, thanks for your reply.

I don't see 'Fix Hardlinks'  - please see screenshot attached.

2020-02-03 Screenshot 1.jpg

Highlighted

Re: Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Dropboxer
Dropboxer

You'll need to hold down your Space bar key to see the options in the window there @Michael000.

If you still don't see them, then please try clicking in the blank space of the window and try holding the Space bar again. It might take a few seconds for the option to appear.

I hope this helps!


Daphne
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support


Heart Did this post help you? If so, please give it a Like below.
Still stuck? Ask me a question!
Tips & Tricks Find new ways to stay in flow or share your tips on how you work smarter with Dropbox.

Highlighted

Re: Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Helpful | Level 7

Thanks, yes holding down the spacebar brought up the option.  I clicked Fix Hardlinks and xlicked Apply - nothing happened. What should happen next?

 

I'm posting a screenshot here in case anyone else has the same problem.

2020-02-03 Screenshot 02.jpg           

Highlighted

Re: Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Helpful | Level 7

This is what I get when I click the Dropbox icon on the system tray - nothing has updated for 10 days and that hasn't changed.

Edited by moderatorEdited by moderator

Highlighted

Re: Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Helpful | Level 7

I got this (see screenshot) but nothing synced yet.

 

2020-02-03 Screenshot 04.jpg

Highlighted

Re: Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Helpful | Level 7

I have now clicked 'Fix Permissions' - see sreenshot.

Dropbox is still not syncing.

Help please.

2020-02-03 Screenshot 05.jpg

 

Highlighted

Re: Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Helpful | Level 7

I rebooted my laptop and I restarted dropbox. Twice.

The screenshot shows that it is now 11 days since Dropbox synced anything.

Can anybody help?

2020-02-04 Screenshot 06.jpg

Highlighted

Re: Dropbox is not syncing after I reorganised files on my laptop

Dropboxer
Dropboxer

Thanks for all the screenshots @Michael000!

It seems that the number of files syncing has gone down since you took the last steps (from 187 to 76 files). Have you seen any progress since your last update?

Also to help with the speed of your sync, if you haven't already then you can check the bandwidth settings for the desktop app aren't limited with these steps.

Keep me posted!


Daphne
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support


Heart Did this post help you? If so, please give it a Like below.
Still stuck? Ask me a question!
Tips & Tricks Find new ways to stay in flow or share your tips on how you work smarter with Dropbox.

Work Smarter with Dropbox

The way we work is changing. Share and discover new ways to work smarter with Dropbox in our community.

Sound good? Let's get started.
Who's talking

Top contributors to this post

What do Dropbox user levels mean?
Need more support?