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Logic for file deletion

Helpful | Level 6

Hello!

 

My laptop recently met with a liquid catastrophe. I've just got it back from the shop and am reinstalling everything. I have a backup of my hard drive and am copying everything over.

 

There was a significant amount of unsynced changes in my Dropbox when the computer died. (It's a whole exasperating thing--I've been having the worst time getting the Dropbox client to sync changes and not just crash all the time on more than one of my computers.) There's no real way for me to determine specifically which files weren't synced yet at this point.

 

I wanted to try copying my existing Dropbox folder from my backup to my new hard drive, along with the local AppData folder, hoping it would preserve the state from before. I'm finding though, that some files will not copy, because they were Smart Sync placeholders, and so now inaccessible by the file system.

 

My question is this: If my Dropbox folder copy only contains files which were previously local, when I restart my Dropbox client, will it detect that the placeholder files are missing and assume I've deleted them, and then remove them everywhere else as well? I'm not sure if the client does some sort of magic trickery to determine what file operations have been performed, or if it just operates on presence and file metadata.

 

Thanks!

1 Accepted Solution

Accepted Solutions
Highlighted

Re: Logic for file deletion

Dropboxer
Dropboxer
Hi Clayton, it should index the the files that exist locally, compare them with the site, and then leave them be if those files weren’t amended.

As for the ‘missing files’, if the Smart Sync placeholders are still present, it should acknowledge that and not subsequently delete the files from the site.

However, since a lot of unfortunate issues occurred with your laptop, it’s hard to say exactly what’s going to happen when it’s linked to your machine.

If files start to get deleted from the Dropbox site, you can always recover them within the 30 day recovery period.

In my opinion, I’d make a backup of the local Dropbox folder in another location, and then delete the old Dropbox folder. This is in case any of those local files were not synced to the site, so the Dropbox app will just download whatever is from the site, without potential wiping the local files.

Hope this helps to clarify matters!

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


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4 Replies 4
Highlighted

Re: Logic for file deletion

Dropboxer
Dropboxer
Hi Clayton, it should index the the files that exist locally, compare them with the site, and then leave them be if those files weren’t amended.

As for the ‘missing files’, if the Smart Sync placeholders are still present, it should acknowledge that and not subsequently delete the files from the site.

However, since a lot of unfortunate issues occurred with your laptop, it’s hard to say exactly what’s going to happen when it’s linked to your machine.

If files start to get deleted from the Dropbox site, you can always recover them within the 30 day recovery period.

In my opinion, I’d make a backup of the local Dropbox folder in another location, and then delete the old Dropbox folder. This is in case any of those local files were not synced to the site, so the Dropbox app will just download whatever is from the site, without potential wiping the local files.

Hope this helps to clarify matters!

Jay
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.

View solution in original post

Highlighted

Re: Logic for file deletion

Helpful | Level 6
Thanks Jay!

The placeholders aren't present, unfortunately. They won't copy over since they're not "real" files. I shall do as you suggest and just keep it as a backup I can go to if I find a file is out of date.
Highlighted

All my files disappeared! What happened?

New member | Level 2
New member | Level 2

Opened my drop box folder and all my files have gone? Any suggestions

Highlighted

Re: Files Disappered

Super User II
Super User II

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