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Everything you need to know about file previews

Everything you need to know about file previews

Amy
Community Manager
There is nothing more annoying that waiting for a file to open and then realising it’s the wrong file. so you go back out of that one and click the correct one, only to see that it is once again, not the right file. By the time you find it, you’ve wasted time and burnt up your patience - or maybe that’s just me. 
 
Here are some handy things to know about previews so you can save time, know when you need to download and save you the heartbreak of deleting the wrong files. (It’s not the end of the world, you can get it back with deleted file recovery and version history, but still).
 

How do I preview files with Dropbox? 

 
You can preview loads of different file types with Dropbox - too many to name here, so if you want to see a full list, check that out here. To preview a file on Dropbox on mobile or on dropbox.com, just click the name of the file and you will see comments, activity, and other information about the file. If you’re using the Dropbox desktop app you can click the arrow symbol in the upper-right corner to see an expanded view. Now that you’ve seen what you need to see, you can go ahead and open or send the right file, without waiting around. 
 

Having preview problems? 

 
Don’t panic if you’re only seeing the first page of one of your files, you haven’t accidentally deleted the rest - some file types just have to be downloaded to view the entirety of the file - such as .paper, .number and .gif files. No, you didn’t save your gif as an image, the movement is still there, you just have to download it to see it in all it’s glory. 
 
Some applications (Microsoft Word,  Adobe Photoshop and more) allow you to set passwords for your files, and if your file needs a password, you won’t be able to preview them. That would probably defeat the purpose of the password! 
 
If your file is too big, you might not be able to preview it and you’ll need to download it to view it
 
Those are some of the key things to note about previews, but our favorite is how much time they save us. Even the handful of minutes saved while waiting for a bunch of images to open can mean an extra coffee, a chat with someone on your team, or just knocking off a little bit earlier.
 
Do you use previews to save time? What other time saving tips do you have? 
Need more support?