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Ignore folder (without selective sync)

Ignore folder (without selective sync)

Helpful | Level 6

Please please please can you add a feature that allows folders to be excluded from the Dropbox account (on windows and mac). For sure I'm not the first person to request this, but I'm yet to find a good explanation of why it's not there. A quick google search reveals loads of people also looking for the same feature. I really like the workflow I have with dropbox, but it's getting to the point where I might switch providers in order to allow better selective sync.

I've seen hackish solutions using selective sync, but it would be great if this could be done in one of the following ways:
- global pattern matching eg "node_modules"
- a marker file in the directory like .dropboxignore
- a simple right click context menu "Ignore this folder"

Other than that, keep up the good work. Cheers.
Tom

917 Comments
New member | Level 2

I realize this original topic is 6 years old, but I agree, something like a .gitignore would be incredibly helpful.  I've got an issue where I'm synching game saves on dropbox using symlinks (which works wonderfully, for the most part), but a specific game uses a ".new" directory as some kinda diff check/temporary cache when it autosaves.  Dropbox attempting to synch is messing with the autosave (but not manual save, thankfully), and worse, when I set the directory to Ignored, because it's a temporary directory, the Ignored status goes away every single time the directory is deleted and re-initialized.

 

Having any sort of pattern matching for exclusion instead would be an incredibly powerful feature.

Helpful | Level 5

I creates this powershell scripts that reads a .dropboxignore file and set all the folders recursively to be ignored.

 

# https://help.dropbox.com/en-us/files-folders/restore-delete/ignored-files

$ignoreList = Get-Content .dropboxignore
$folderList = Get-ChildItem -Path . -Recurse -Directory -Force -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue | Select-Object FullName
$baseList=@()
"Ignoring the following folders:"
$ignoreList

""
foreach ($folder in $folderList)
{
foreach ($ignore in $ignoreList)
{
$ignore = $ignore.Trim()
$index = $folder.FullName.IndexOf($ignore)
if ($index -ge 0 )
{
$base = $folder.FullName.SubString(0, $index+$ignore.Length)
if ( ! $baseList.Contains($base))
{
$base
Set-Content -Path "$base" -Stream com.dropbox.ignored -Value 1

$baseList = $baseList + $base
}
break
}
}
}
""
"Folders ignored:"
$baseList

# Clear-Content -Path 'C:\Users\yourname\Dropbox\ (Personal)/YourFileName.pdf' -Stream com.dropbox.ignored
# Set-Content -Path C:\Users\lars\Dropbox\RaiseYourFinger\node_modules -Stream com.dropbox.ignored -Value 1

 

It's not perfect, but it suits my needs.

Helpful | Level 5

The provided solution with com.dropbox.ignored flags are not without issues.

 

1. On computer A, I build an app and it creates node_modules.  That folder gets synced to my other computers.

2. I ignore the folder on computer A, and the folder gets deleted from the other computers.

3. Now I do a build on computer B. That creates node_modules on computer B, and now that folder now gets synchronized to my other computers. But that results in the existing folder on computer A is being renamed "node_modules (Ignored in conflict)".

4. I can now ignore node_modules on computer B and the folder disappears on my other computers.

5. I now have to rename the folder on computer A back to node_modules.

 

If Dropbox had listened to its customers and just created a git style .ignorefolders kind of file, everything would have been much easier. And let's face it. This is mostly an option for computer professionals anyway.

Explorer | Level 3

This would be amazingly useful, just like a .gitignore.  Dropbox's selective sync extremely difficult to use because it needs to be set up on every single device.  the ability to drop a ".dropboxignore" file in a folder would make like so much easier.

Helpful | Level 6

I'd all but given up on this idea... We'd been asking for it for half a decade! Now it seems they've implemented a half-assed solution that causes more work for the user, not less.

 

I guess my hatred of DB for the contempt they show their users (this is STILL the most requested feature, EVER) isn't gone yet. As soon as a viable competitor enters the market, I'll jump ship. It's so obvious what users want. It wouldn't take much for a company to bridge that gap and steal a ton of users from DB.

Explorer | Level 4

@Johnny W.2- I agree. DB is basically dead. Checkout Tresorit which supports what we all have been asking DB for years now.

New member | Level 2

Six years later, and AFAIK this feature still hasn't been provided, correct? Might be time to find a new cloud storage provider. I work regularly with many huge files, and these keep getting sync'd to my dropbox. I want the other files in these folders to be sync'd, but not these logs. To be clear: I want them to remain on my local drive, but NOT sync'd up to my Dropbox drive. It's mind-boggling that the Dropbox team has ignored our requests for over SIX YEARS! Are they taking a page out of Microsoft's playbook??

Explorer | Level 3

I do created the ignored folder with gey minus symbol. BUT, BUT, BUT,  Dropbox still monitors what happens inside ignored folders!! When handreds of files change suddenly, dropbox still tries to index them! consuming a lot of system resources. Really really disappointed, How long do you guys want us to wait for the fix for this ridiculous problem???

New member | Level 2

I use music production software (Ableton) that constantly creates a number of temporary and/or generated files in my projects' folders. While I want the project folders themselves to be synced to my Dropbox, it is wasteful of bandwidth and space for these files to be synced and I would like to simply be able to tell Dropbox to ignore these directories (even better would be by a path pattern that includes the file name and supports wildcards).

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