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How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?

How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?

Stephen d.8
Explorer | Level 4

Hi, I spent about an hour on a "chat" with a Dropbox agent yesterday who did not seem to know about this functionality, I have subsequently found this help article.

Back up an external hard drive to Dropbox.

 

My question, however, is this: I have seen the prompts to back up my external drive(s) to Dropbox a couple of times on Max OS BigSur and thought I would do a bit of a clean up on them first. Having done that cleanup, I now cannot get the Dropbox dialogue that offers "Do you want to back up disk XXX to Dropbox?" to reappear.

Is there a way to "force" the dialogue to show? 

Under Preferences>Backups, I have the "Hide all setup notificaitons when new external drives are plugged-in" un-ticked. (Not sure why they hyphenate "plugged in", but they do). So if there is a notification offering to back up the disk when plugged in, it should not be hidden.

 

Dropbox Backups External drives.png

I've tried.

  1. Disconnecting and reconnecting the drives (they appear on the desktop, so are connected / readable).
  2. Quitting and then restarting the Dropbox application.
  3. Rebooting the entire machine.

 

Nothing seems to make the dialogues to backup the external drives show again.

 

My Dropbox help agent suggested dragging the files, about 1.5TB of them, from the 2TB external drive onto my Dropbox folder on my 0.5TB SSD and then using selective sync, which sounded like a recipe for disaster, and from what that article says, not necessary.

 

Anyhow, having now discovered the help article in the link above, at least I know I didn't dream what I saw. 

 

However, now it's the weekend, and Dropbox don't help folks outside of standard Mon - Fri working hours, so wondering if any "super users" out there know how to get it to work.

 

Thanks for any pointers.

 

Stephen

8 Replies 8

Re: How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?

Rich
Super User II

@Stephen d.8 wrote:

How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?


Look on the drive for any hidden files placed there by Dropbox. Delete them, then disconnect and reconnect the drive. That's how Camera Uploads used to identify drives that were connected.

Re: How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?

Stephen d.8
Explorer | Level 4

Thanks for the response, Rich. 

 

I don't quite know what sort of file I'm looking for, but I can see the normally hidden files & folders and there's nothing that looks related to Dropbox. Searched with HoudaSpot on both external drives for anything with Dropbox in the name, there's nothing I can find.

 

Stephen

Re: How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?

Rich
Super User II

@Stephen d.8 wrote:

I don't quite know what sort of file I'm looking for, but I can see the normally hidden files & folders and there's nothing that looks related to Dropbox.


With Camera Uploads, it used to drop a hidden file, .dropbox or .device, or something like that, after it prompted you to upload photos from the drive. I thought they might be tagging drives the same way with the backup feature.

Re: How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?

Stephen d.8
Explorer | Level 4
Ahh, noooo, I don’t see anything like that, I assume it’s at the top level, but I’ve searched on those two throughout the drives. Nothing!

Thanks again.

Stephen

Re: How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?

Aubs
Explorer | Level 3

Hi there, I'm having the exact same problem. I've also copied everything on my external hard drive to another one, then reformatted the hard drive, then moved everything back on to it. This didn't work either. The dialogue prompt only appeared on Friday for the first time and I've spent several hours trying to work out how to get it back. I've also done all of what you said above, but with no joy. 

Re: How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?

Aubs
Explorer | Level 3

I've also connected another external hard drive and had no pop-up prompt asking if I wanted to backup this drive either. 

I've also deleted the desktop dropbox app and reinstalled it with no joy.

 

Maybe the prompt comes from the Dropbox servers. We might receive another prompt during office hours on weekdays or something. I don't know, lol. 

Re: How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?

Stephen d.8
Explorer | Level 4
Hi Aubs,

Interesting that you’ve “deleted the desktop app and reinstalled it” without success.

Having contacted Dropbox support on this, they responded telling me to do that and immediately marked my case as solved.

It seems as if a reinstall is their default answer to many issues, but sounds as if it wouldn’t work in any case.

Thanks for the forewarning!

Stephen

Re: How to get the Dropbox dialogue to back up an external drive to reappear?

Stephen d.8
Explorer | Level 4
Quite annoying that when I answer a response to my original question the Dropbox system then sends me an email saying “ Hi Stephen d.8
Someone has responded to your question on the Dropbox Community.”…..it was me!

You’d think a tech company that requires a full login to post anything might have a slightly more sophisticated system, even for the self help section.

And now I’ll get another email in about half an hour’s time. Doh!

….
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    Stephen d.8 Explorer | Level 4
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    Aubs Explorer | Level 3
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