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Sync dropbox across multiple locations/hard drives

Sync dropbox across multiple locations/hard drives

Ashvin B.
New member | Level 2

I have a larger dropbox account than my primary hard drive. It would be great if dropbox could support virtual links to files outside of it's default location, without those files having to also be in the main dropbox folder. I am aware of shortcuts/aliases on windows/OSX, but those don't solve the problem if my primary drive has limited space.

This is one workaround, but native support through the Dropbox client would be ideal: http://bobmckay.com/software/split-dropbox-across-multiple-drives

Latest Update
Emmet
Community Manager
Hello everyone. This feature is being increasingly supported through our external drive backup feature, and we will be expanding the types of drives we back up. However, it is worth noting that this won't behave like traditional Dropbox Sync.  This feature can backup content from multiple drives, but won't write changes that happen elsewhere. 
 
Status changed to: Accepted
100 Comments
carlf
Explorer | Level 4

Hi @dropboxkelson .  Let me start by saying I am really pleased that you are working on this.

 

My usage of Boxifier and my ideal workflow is similar to that described by @teo5 , except I am using a Windows laptop.  I have a 1TB internal SSD and a 2TB external SSD.  I am a photographer using Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom primarily.  I mostly do still photo editing but occasionally do video editing as well using Movavi.  All of my pictures and videos are stored on my external SSD, along with my Lightroom catalog and my Movavi library.  My internal drive contains in the Dropbox folder, all my document files (mostly MS Office documents) and my music files (mostly flac).  I want ready local access to all files in Dropbox and those on my external drive, though some have not been accessed in a few years.  Neither of my two drives is strictly for archiving and I want to be able to easily access them either directly using File Explorer or indirectly from within apps.  I split the picture and video files off onto the external drive simply because I needed more than the 1TB available on my internal SSD.

 

The files I use on my internal drive are all in the Dropbox folder, while the files on my external drive are just in the ordinary Windows file structure (no special Boxifier folder is used).   Within the Dropbox folder on my internal drive is a Boxifier folder containing pointers to the top level folders on my external drive.  Apparently Boxifier fools Dropbox into thinking the files on the external drive are on the same drive as Dropbox folder so that Dropbox syncs and backs up all files that Boxifier points to on my external drive as well as all those in the internal drive Dropbox folder. 

 

When I take my laptop into the field for photo shoots, I bring the external drive as well, since I need to work with the picture files.  I do not normally detach the external drive, though I do occasionally and, as @teo5 requests, I would like Dropbox to not lose its mind when the external drive is detached or reattached (Boxifier does not have a problem with this at present).  I also need Dropbox to recognize when internet access is not available and pause, and then continue syncing and backing up once internet access is available again.  Note - I do not use Smart Sync in Dropbox because I need local access to my files when I am offline without having to know which ones ahead of time, and I am willing to pay for  the drives I need to get that.  Also, while I regularly share files and folders in Dropbox with other people for viewing and downloading, I do not use collaboration much.  That might change in the future if my business expands.

Dave C.5
Helpful | Level 7

@channingshattuck

re: "Sometimes you have to relogin to those other accounts for Dropbox to turn on again after a Windows update or major shutdown even"

 

You should set each of those user accounts dropbox to NOT start automatically.

 

Then in your primary account create a set of shortcuts as follows

 

RUNAS.EXE /savecred /user:<username> "C:\Program Files (x86)\Dropbox\Client\Dropbox.exe"

 

You can now run each dropbox user instance from within your main account.

 Which is way cleaner than keeping the whole profile running for each like you have been doing.

 

 

PS: I would not waste the energy explaining to DB what your use purpose is, they just entertain your interactions to side line that they are not doing anything about this. They have done nothing and wont do anything about it. When it doesn't effect 98% of the user base they don't care about the other 2% its not economically viable to address it.

 

And lets face it, if you really need more space and "security" (said loosely) of placing a copy on Dropbox buy a bigger hard drive.

Then Buy a second external one and use that as a backup, don't trust in the cloud alone!

drewpreiner
Explorer | Level 4

@dropboxkelson hello! Thanks for the response. Stoked to hear this is being considered 🙂 Especially as a Mac user!

 

And yes, you are exactly right in that thought. There could also be a third external for archive.

 

For me, the primary benefit is more about having the hard drive backed up. Since, theoretically, I would travel with this hard drive, I wouldn't necessarily need to link out to or access any of the content. However, I would say that as a very close secondary benefit, it would still be nice to be able to access that content from anywhere. And share links if say I wanted to send a whole session folder to another producer for collaboration. 

 

So, TL;DR, both would be great 🙂

doodlemancy
Explorer | Level 3

So long story short, and I need you to take me at my word on this because the explanation is lengthy: I need cloud backup for a folder that CANNOT be in my Dropbox. I just can't move it in there. I wish I could.

 

Because of this, even though I pay for and love Dropbox, I had to use (sad tuba noise) Google Drive, which predictably turned into a problem less than 24 hours later. I am sitting here still fuming after FINALLY retrieving a file from it that it played keep-away with for two hours.

 

Please. Please save me from having to use Google Drive ever again. Please let me sync other folders on my drives to Dropbox.

Emma
Community Manager

Updating to In Review as per @dropboxkelson's update

To help us understand the use case here, it would be great if you could share your ideal workflow(s).

 

Thanks!

Status changed to: Investigating
Server_Align
Collaborator | Level 10

LOL.

Asked for in 2014 - seven years later it's IN REVIEW,

14 years later it will be in development

21 years later it will be released.

Frederic C.2
Helpful | Level 6

7 years old ticket but I'll play the game.

I'm not a UI / UX expert, neither I'm paid to do anybody's job. But just by watching what other similar tools are doing.

 

The solution is in the title of the feed

 

Actually you can only Sync 1 folder which is named DropBox

Add in DropBox Preference an option to add additionnal "Dropbox" Folders / Drive.

On each device user can choose to smart sync or not each folder.

User can add as many folder they like to.

 

Done

 

But I'm pretty sure at Dropbox Company there is a bunch of ingeniors that have already worked on this since many years with many solutions and facing all problems that need to be resolved to fix them.

jacphoto
Explorer | Level 4

Simlinks used to work to achieve this although it was not an ideal solution. At some point of time Dropbox disabled this. Fo me this is a show stopper to register for an account with more storage.

Emmet
Community Manager
Hello everyone. This feature is being increasingly supported through our external drive backup feature, and we will be expanding the types of drives we back up. However, it is worth noting that this won't behave like traditional Dropbox Sync.  This feature can backup content from multiple drives, but won't write changes that happen elsewhere. 
 
Status changed to: Accepted
carlf
Explorer | Level 4

Hi Emmet,

I would really like something that works like traditional Dropbox Sync on multiple drives.  Is the backup for multiple drives going to be it, or are there plans to extend this to Dropbox Sync as well?

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