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Windows 10 use a column in File Explorer (file property) for icons instead of overlay

Windows 10 use a column in File Explorer (file property) for icons instead of overlay

Explorer | Level 3

Dropbox uses icon file overlay to show file sync status in File Explorer in Windows 10.  Windows has a limit of just 15 overlay icons and different applications push other appliations out of the top 15 slots - this is often why some Windows users have missing overlay.  


OneDrive has moved to using a separate column in File Explorer as shown in the following example.   This also means you can order by status. 



It would be great if Dropbox could adopt a similar solution.




New member | Level 2

If possible, it would be great if Dropbox could also make use of the new status column (the one used by OneDrive in the latest version) to show the file status (download/upload progress, sync/share status etc.).

This would have the huge benefit that Dropbox no longer needs to fight over the 15 Shell icon overlays available for all applications combined. Also, it would make it easier to see the status of files that are e.g. tracked by SVN (which also adds overlays to the files)

Super User II

As much as I'd love to see it, it's likely a Microsoft only thing, at least for now.


Long before Dropbox even announced SmartSync, OneDrive had the feature available (though it was buggy as hell). No other file sync service could do it because Microsoft wouldn't open the API that allowed for it. It was a Microsoft-only feature. I suspect that the Status column is the same, again, at least for now.


This idea is going to need a bit more support.

We've updated the status to encourage more users to back you up!

Status changed to: Needs more votes
Long Caster
Explorer | Level 3
New member | Level 2

What Rich said is no longer true. iCloud for Windows also makes use of this feature, as it syncs iCloud Drive and iCloud Photos to the computer using smartsync-like functions, and the items use the same Status column (and even the icons) than OneDrive.


With this, I assume that the API is no longer privative.

Explorer | Level 4

why has not Dropbox implemented this feature yet? It is a must and very useful feature! Please Dropbox add this asap. Thank You!

New member | Level 2

I strongly support Dropbox using a Status column to flag file sync status. This is the best solution. 

But until Microsoft allow 3rd parties to use the Status column, I suggest Dropbox should initiate a set of open-source overlay icons with agreed meaningful names to indicate file sync status.


Once installed in the top 'active 11' in the Registry list of icon overlays they would be available to all cloud storage apps, either by default or as a user option if app-specific overlays do not appear.  

This solution has two big advantages:

1. No more missing overlays even if more than one app is installed (vital for many users)

2. A shared understanding of what the icons mean. 

Please support this idea or improve it. 

sheila a.1
Helpful | Level 5

It would be very helpful to be able to see the sync status of each folder, file in a column alongside Date Modified to show Date last synced.

New member | Level 2

Yeah, the Dropbox overlay on windows is really bad, yet another reason Mac's seem better for the office use in my profession - creative/design. It's such a shame, because if you are a computer geek like myself, and want to get the most out of your buck, putting all the parts together yourself, consecutively running Windows, you are quite stuck with so many usability issues within the Windows Explorer, this thread speaking of yet another one I've only learnt about today after setting OneDrive and Dropbox simultaneously, somehow Onedrive still created those things in the registry pushing Dropbox Out lol.



Thank you for your idea, while we can’t take every idea forward we do regularly re-review and will update you if anything changes!

Status changed to: Not for right now
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