Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
We love to hear how every person gets the most from Dropbox, and it seems everyone has a slightly different use for it - tell us yours here!

Dropbox files & folders

Get in sync with the Dropbox Community. Our members can answer all your questions on Dropbox files and folders. Join a discussion or start your own today.

Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Start backup from external hard drive into dropbox

Start backup from external hard drive into dropbox

Explorer | Level 3

Hi, I'm trying to connect my external hard drive so it gets backed up by dropbox. 


When I plug in the drive I don't get a notification to upload it to dropbox. When I drag in the drive into the dropbox folder in the computer the hard drive icon has a little arrow next to it? does anyone knows what the arrow represents?


If I make the drive external only the icon changes to 0kb size, does that means the drive is not being backup up by dropbox then?

I'm assuming it makes sense to do it this way whereas the drive is backup by dropbox and online only right? or do I need to have the drive 'synced and local' in order for the backup to work? does that means now I have 2 copies of the drive: itself

2.dropbox folder in the computer 'synced and local'

3.dropbox online. 


Sorry, I understand dropbox is not an online backup system however I'm trying to make it work like it. Also if anyone has other suggestions on other online file management systems who can also do backups easily and hassle free please do let me know. 

I have heard of things like 'boxifier' but trying to keep costs to a single platform. thanks 


1 Reply 1

Re: Start backup from external hard drive into dropbox

Hey @piloadami, thanks for posting on our Community!

Could you please clarify what type of external drive you're using?  

For example,this feature only supports external drives with filesystem type NTFS (Windows) and APFS or HFS+ (Mac).

In regards to the icon you mentioned, I'm not quite sure, could you send us a screenshot?

Did you at some point move your Dropbox folder to the external drive or you just copied or moved the drive itself into your Dropbox Folder?

Also, what's the app's exact status as shown in your menu bar/system tray? Is it 'up to date' or is it still syncing? 

Let me know what you find and we'll take it from there.

Community Moderator @ Dropbox

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

Who's talking

Top contributors to this post

  • User avatar
    Walter Dropboxer
What do Dropbox user levels mean?
Need more support?