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Can anyone help?! Dropbox has copied two versions of itself: one on C drive, one on D drive

Can anyone help?! Dropbox has copied two versions of itself: one on C drive, one on D drive

EmmaD
Explorer | Level 4

My PC has a smallish SSD C drive, and a much larger conventional D drive. I like to keep all my files locally, not merely in the Cloud, and I have a lot of data, including crucial work files and big image files, so the C drive is not big enough. So when I first installed Dropbox on this PC, I moved it onto the D drive in the proper way, and it worked fine.

 

I now realise that at some point (perhaps during an update?) Dropbox copied itself to the C drive as well. I now have two versions of the same Dropbox (i.e. based on the same account). They look roughly the same, but don't seem to be synced to each other: the C-drive version of some folders are the more up-to-date, with other folders it's the D-drive version which is more up-to-date. As I have hundreds and hundreds of folders, this a recipe for certain chaos and possibly a work-disaster.

 

My question is: If I move the C-drive version onto the D-drive in the way that Dropbox Help recommends, can anyone tell me which of these possibilities will happen? 

  1. Where there's a conflict with two different versions of the same file or folder, the software will automatically choose the most up-to-date version (I hope this is what will happen)
  2. Where there's a conflict, the software will offer me the choice of of preserving the C-drive version, or the D-drive version. (This would be a chore, but I could do it)
  3. Where there's a conflict, the software will let the D-drive versions stand and erase C-drive versions even when the C-drive is more up-to-date. (This would be a disaster)
  4. The software will unilaterally overwrite the D-drive version of Dropbox, with the C-drive version I'm moving over, regardless of any D-drive versions of files being more up-to-date (This would be a disaster)
  5. The software will put the two versions side-by-side on the D-drive, and I'll still have many not-the-same versions of the same files/folders. (This wouldn't solve my current problem)

Does anyone know which will happen? I really need to sort this out and get back to having one, up-to-date version of every file. But I don't dare start the move until I know I'm not going to lose crucial stuff and end up losing more up-to-date versions. 

4 Replies 4

Re: Dropbox has copied two versions of itself: one on C drive, one on D drive

Lori
Dropboxer

Hey @EmmaD, I'd be happy to answer this for you! 

As a first step, it'd help if you checked the app's preferences, under Sync, in order for you to check the actual path the app is syncing files to. 

Can you check, and let me know more? 

Now, if you try to move the C-drive version into the D-drive one, what's most likely to happen is for everything to be duplicated into the latter Dropbox folder. 

 

You will most likely have a Dropbox folder, within your Dropbox folder.

Let me know what you find.


Lori
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
dropbox.com/support


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Re: Dropbox has copied two versions of itself: one on C drive, one on D drive

EmmaD
Explorer | Level 4

Hi Lori - thanks so much for getting back to me. 

 

In Preferences, it currently shows my folder location at C:\Users\emmad\Dropbox. This is NOT where it should be, because when I set this computer up, I changed the path to the D-drive, to give me hard-disk space to keep a full set of local files. It’s been like that till quite recently, and some Dropbox update must have changed it, as I never would. I just didn’t spot that Dropbox had created this rogue C-drive version.

 

Windows Explorer also put that rogue C-drive version into the sidebar, and I didn't realise that either: the D-drive version is only visible down the bottom as part of the main "This PC" file-tree. 

 

It gets worse: where recent files have been saved depends on whether a) I drag-and-dropped them onto what I didn't realise was that rogue, C-drive version in the sidebar, or b) I was working with an existing D-drive version file or folder and the changes were saved there.

 

So it's not as simple as one of the Drobpox copies just being more up-to-date than the other, and I can't therefore can't just delete one or overwrite it with the other.

 

Worse still: I paused the sync when I realised there was a rogue C-drive version syncing and it was running out of space on the SSD. But I had to go on working, so there are some new and changed files on the PC, in both Dropbox copies, which aren't saved to the dropbox.com cloud version at all.

 

This is being a bit of a nightmare - I have upwards of 100,000 files on here, many crucial for my work, and can't possibly check them all. 

 

I really appreciate any help you can give me.

Emma

Re: Dropbox has copied two versions of itself: one on C drive, one on D drive

Lori
Dropboxer
Hello, @EmmaD! Thank you for responding!

I'm afraid there's no automated way for the app to check all the files between your C and D drive, and choose the most updated one. 

You would need to do so manually, by comparing the files that you have on your D:/ drive.

When you copy a file from one drive to the other, your OS should ask you which version you want to keep, provided the files have identical names.

Lori
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
dropbox.com/support


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Re: Dropbox has copied two versions of itself: one on C drive, one on D drive

EmmaD
Explorer | Level 4

Hi Lori - many thanks for this. 

 

Just setting this all out to clear it in my own mind - forgive me - the facts are as follows:

 

a) it’s the C-drive Dropbox, all smart-synced Cloud-only files, which is syncing safely to the Cloud at present.

 

b) I always want the most up-to-date versions, which are mostly in the D-drive Dropbox. These are *not* safe in the Cloud at all: they're not synced at all. I have copied the whole D-drive Dropbox onto an external hard drive, as back-up.

 

c) there are some files where the C-drive version is the most up-to-date, and some files which are only on the C-drive, or only on the D-drive.

 

d) manually comparing file-by-file is not possible because: i) thanks to the sync confusion caused by Dropbox changing itself away my preferred drive, many now have a “date created” date of this month, not their true date ii) I have nearly 100,000 files.

 

Problem 1) how do I make sure the D-drive versions are “safely stored in the Cloud” as everything recommends, when the D-drive Dropbox is not syncing?

 

Problem 2) I understand that when I try to move a set of files, Windows will offer me the choice of which version to use. I tried to do this by the Preferences > Sync > Move procedure, changing where I want the Dropbox on this PC from the C drive back to the D drive where I always had it. However, ut I got an error message that there is already a Dropbox on the D drive. Which of course there is, in a way, just not a Dropbox which syncs. 

 

So the Move procedure isn’t possible, and I can’t actually get to the point where Windows will offer me the choice of which version to use.

 

Any advice for what I should do now would be very gratefully received! I am on the verge of decamping wholesale to OneDrive, which I'd much rather not!

 

Many thanks

Emma

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