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When will Smart Sync work on linux?

New member | Level 2

I need to save space on my hard drive. Smart Sync would be the perfect solution, but it still does not work on linux fedora.

When will we have this solution?

Tags (2)

Current Status: Not for right now

NanoExplorer New member | Level 2
New member | Level 2

Hi there!

    I just wanted to add my name to the list of people who want smart sync on Linux. I just bought a 1 month subscription of Pro to try it out (I skipped Box and Google Drive because they completely lack Linux support) and I am saddened that Linux doesn't have smart sync.



Explorer | Level 4
Like the rest in this thread, I really would like to see Selective Sync (or, in my case Smart Sync) added to the linux client port. I'd like to emphasize this request: Linux isn't just a "geek" OS choice anymore. Since mid 2018, Windows 10 has suffered security and operational faults more and more frequently. Starting in late 2019, many businesses are moving to Linux distros on staff desktop machines; and with the increasing market for US$100-$300 Linux laptops from Dell, Lenovo, Pine64 and other smaller brands, these are beginning to show up in real workplaces. Dropbox is the best commercial cloud storage that I've used. But I agree with other commenters here: If one of the other major commercial cloud providers offers a Linux client that includes "Smart Sync", I'm outa here.
Explorer | Level 3

I mentioned looking at other solutions in my previous posts a year ago, especially pCloud and Insync. I have been with Insync which uses my google drive for 4+ months now, and there are advantages compared to Dropbox. Storage from google is basically the same cost as dropbox, but now all my services are consolidated. Work and team sharing is much better, because I can use Google drive to search and organize, and it's crazy good. For instance, I can search inside my pictures. Insync also has the file filters that Dropbox does not, so I specify many app directories (node_modules, git, etc) that shouldn't be backed up, and it much more robust than dropbox. Really encourage you all to use a differnent solution than db.

Explorer | Level 4
Thank you NB3, for your excellent response. I assume you were able to "losslessly" transfer your data from DropBox to Google - or did you simply just point your source to Google and go from there? I'm going to need to move from DropBox to Google bypassing my source machines. I have a lot of data in DropBox that is no longer on a "physical" disk. This isn't due to some "jack-leg" Smart Sync; several of my physuca sources don't exist any more, but I reference data in DropBox from them. If you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them! I already have a Google Drive account, so I'll just need to upgrade it to a business-level and go. Probably over this weekeknd. Again, thanks for the rapid and useful reply, NB3! Really appreciated!
Explorer | Level 3

Transferring from any cloud storage to any other requires an intermediary server or service if you don't have the files local to re-sync them. I only have about 5TB of data, so I just let it re-sync to the new service.

In the past, I have piped a stream from dropbox cli over to the Google Drive CLI. It's a one line command after you get an API key and set up your credentials, and requires no local storage. I used an OVH server that I own as the intermediary, and it has a 500mb pipe that is not metered so was pretty quick and cheap. From your home computer will suck, and you will have problems if connection fails mid-way.



Star Collaborator | Level 19
pCloud can transfer what you want, for example. If you sign up there, just select your Dropbox account and let the service do the rest. 😉
Explorer | Level 3

For anyone wanting to have something like smart sync (e.g. a mounted point that only loads files as neccessary) there is the option of using rclone . This is a tool that supports multiple remote file systems and has lots of utilities for interacting with them.

In particular you can use "rclone mount" to mount your dropbox to some folder.

For example:

mkdir ~/dropbox
rclone mount dropbox:/ ~/dropbox

Will allow you to access your dropbox remote via the folder ~/dropbox .

Now there's a few options we'll want:

--dir-cache-time 30s # Ensures entering a folder that was really recently entered doesn't need reload time
--cache-dir ~/.rclone-cache-dir/ # Allows files to be cached instead of being loaded every time
--vfs-cache-max-age 24h # Allows you to set time files will be kept in cache until they're removed from disk, configure to whatever you want
--vfs-cache-max-size 2G # Allows you to set how much space will be used for cache, configure to whatever you want
--vfs-cache-mode full # Ensures writes and reads are buffered to disk before sync

Now this gives a pretty good mounted fs however unfortunately this will not mount automatically on login.

In order to get it working on startup we can use systemd to configure session start tasks.

So create file:


Now in this file we'll add our startup config:

Description=Rclone Dropbox

ExecStartPre=/bin/mkdir -p /home/<username>/dropbox
ExecStart=/usr/bin/rclone mount dropbox:/ /home/<username>/dropbox --dir-cache-time 30s --cache-dir /home/<username>/.rclone-mount-cache/ --vfs-cache-max-age 24h0m0s --vfs-cache-mode full --vfs-cache-max-size 2G
ExecStop=-/usr/bin/fusermount -u /home/<username>/dropbox


Configure the options for the cache however you want. Make sure to change /home/<username> to whatever your home directory in all places it appears in the command.

Now to add the service to run automatically:

systemctl --user enable rclone-mount-dropbox.service

And that's it, restart your computer (or start the service with systemctl) and voila you have a mounted dropbox in your home directory.

Explorer | Level 3

+1 for rclone solution pointed out by Jamesernator (thanks!). 

I tried it and it seems to work nicely.

I think I'll use it, together with selective sync for most used dir. 

At least, while waiting for smart sync feature for Linux! 

ceiphr New member | Level 2
New member | Level 2

Give me smart sync on Linux or I'm switching to Google Drive. Dropbox, you're losing out on paid users because you aren't actively supporting a platform that you offer service for. If you market a feature, make sure I can use it. Thanks.

Status changed to: Not for right now

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