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How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

New member | Level 1
New member | Level 1

Here's the essence of the problem: I have DropBox Pro installed on an iPhone 5s, iPad Air, MacBook Pro and Windows desktop computer. I do NOT want to clog up my iPhone, iPad and MacBook with files from DropBox. I want to simply upload and then delete them from the mobile devices. I'd like to use automatic Camera Upload but when I delete the photos from my iPhone or iPad I do NOT want them deleted from DropBox...as has happened on numerous occasions (most recently when I exchanged a broken iPhone for a new one and then tried to copy content from one to the other and subsequently delete unwanted photos...on the iPhone, not "unwanted" from my DropBox space). So how do I do a one way sync? Keep in mind that after photos appear in the Camera Upload folder, I MOVE them to a different desired location...and when they're deleted from my iPhone, they are still deleted from the new location!

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Re: How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

Super User II
Super User II
No there isnt Frankie, as unfortunately has been said in this thread.

 


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Highlighted

Re: How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

Dropboxer
Dropboxer

Hi there!

Just to be clear - once the photos are fully uploaded to Dropbox from the Camera Uploads feature, you will be able to delete them from your phone and they will still be in your Dropbox account.

To do this, you can do a test: manually upload one photo to your Dropbox and then delete it from your phone once it is uploaded:

1) Navigate to the location within your Dropbox where you'd like to upload files
2) Select the ellipsis button (...)
3) Tap the "Add Files" button to select the files to upload. There is also an option to create a new folder.

Once it is uploaded and you can see that photo in its location and in the "photos" tab, you can delete it from your phone and you will see that it is not deleted from the Dropbox app.

If you would like to upload all your photos to Dropbox, you can enable Camera Uploads.

he Camera Upload feature is not enabled by default, however you can change the settings for Camera Upload right from the Dropbox app on your iOS device.

  1. Open the Dropbox app, and select Settings
  2. Under the Settings heading, select Camera Upload
  3. You can enable or disable the automatic Camera Upload feature, as well as the option to allow Camera Upload to use cellular data or not. Please note that videos will not be automatically uploaded over cellular data.

I hope this helps!

Highlighted

Re: How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

New member | Level 1
New member | Level 1

That doesn't work.

Highlighted

Re: How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

Dropboxer
Dropboxer

Hi there, 

Could you tell me what does not work, what steps you are following and where you get unexpected behavior from the app? 

If you would like a member of the support team to have a closer look at this, you can get in touch here: 

www.dropbox.com/support

Thanks! 

Highlighted

Re: How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

New member | Level 1
New member | Level 1

This works perfectly. 

I was able to clear MANY gigs of space off of my iPad, iPhone, and my MacBook Pro Retina using this feature within the Dropbox App on all devices. After I kept them all opened and made sure all syncs were finished, I deleted an unwanted pic from my camera roll. This kept the pic on my dropbox while it was removed from every device I had it located on. The program worked flawlessly. I then deleted every pic from my devices as I only wanted access to them online since my Macbook or iPhone is almost always with me. Now, I'm completely untethered from my local internal and external storage. Perfect solution for the supply and demand I was needing so desperately. 

Highlighted

Re: How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

New member | Level 1
New member | Level 1

this doesn't work for me. if I delete photos from my samsung smartphone then they immediately get deleted from the dropbox folder on my pc. I'd like to be able to free up space on my smartphone but keep the photos in Dropbox folder on other devices

Highlighted

Re: How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

New member | Level 2
New member | Level 2

I think what is being asked is:

  • Upload Back up images/movies from iPhone or Android to DropBox Cloud
  • Remove all copies from both iPhone picture app and from the DropBox app on the phone.
  • Still have Photos and Movies on DropBox cloud (and possibly any laptop or desktop machine that is syncing to the overall folder.)

Right now with Dropbox Camera Upload turned on:

  • Photo is taken and stored in photo library
  • Photo is uploaded to Dropbox but also stored locally in Dropbox app

Thus If you take a 100 MB movie, you end up using 200MB of space on the iPhone, 100MB for the Photo Gallery, and 100MB in the Dropbox App.

Of course, you can then manually delete the 100MB movie from the Photo folder, but that's tedious and we're still left with 100MB used in the DropBox app. If deleted from the DropBox app later by accident, it also removes it from all synced folders. That is ~not~ a backup in my opinion but simply a mirror.

What I think the original poster is asking is: "How to I back up Photos and Videos to Drop Box Cloud, but NOT KEEP ANY local version on the mobile device."

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Re: How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

Super User II
Super User II

Thus If you take a 100 MB movie, you end up using 200MB of space on the iPhone, 100MB for the Photo Gallery, and 100MB in the Dropbox App.

Not true. The Dropbox app on mobile devices does not store files like the regular computer clients do. Yes, it may have a copy of the files for a short time, but this is just a cache. The only files stored permanently on mobile devices are those marked as available offline. Otherwise any files stored locally by the Dropbox app are periodically deleted automatically.

If deleted from the DropBox app later by accident, it also removes it from all synced folders.

The mobile apps show you a list of what is in your entire account; not what is on the device. Delete a file within the app and you're deleting it from your account, everywhere.

Deleting the photo from your Photo Gallery (after it has been uploaded of course) will not delete the copy that was uploaded to Dropbox. The Carousel app (discontinued) had a nice feature that would purge any photos from the gallery that had already been uploaded to Dropbox. It's likely that will be incorporated into the Dropbox client at some point.

Highlighted

Re: How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

New member | Level 2
New member | Level 2

Thank you for the clarification Richard.  I appreciate it.

I just switched on Camera Upload the other day. Prior to that my "Storage Usage" for DropBox app was minimal. (in the 10s of MB)

After the upload (which it did correctly to my Camera Folder), my DropBox app shows 1.1GB of Storage Usage. 

Question: How long does it take for the DropBox app to remove them from the iPhone?

If I click on a particular image in DropBox from the Photos tab and then select "..." for its settings I see that is say "Make Available for Offline" which can be toggled to "Remove From Device". Which is the correct setting to remove them my device?

All the recently added images seem to be set to "Make Available for Offline". Do I need to manually change them all to "Remove From Device"? 

Is there a way to set the default to "Remove From Device" if that is the setting I'm looking for? I don't seen any obvious way to select all the images and set this globally.

Current Setting on all images and movies in Dropbox - "Photos"

></p>
<p>If I select the

Thank you for your help.

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Re: How to upload files then delete from mobile device but not have files deleted from DropBox?

New member | Level 1
New member | Level 1

Hi I am new to Dropbox & I have downloaded all my photos into my Dropbox on my PC & now I am wanting to delete the photos off my iPhone & iPad what I want to know is will I lose them from my Dropbox on my PC if I delete them off my mobile devices please help 

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