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Best practices for a top-to-bottom DB reorg? Plus adding Team folders?

Explorer | Level 4

I am an admin for a 25-person Dropbox Business Standard install, and I have been tasked with "reorganizing" our DB file structure.  Wondering if anyone has successfully carried out this type of reorg, and if so, if they documented the process and would be willing to share? 

Key issues:

  • If we start moving folders around and/or un-share and re-share, I suspect it will trigger downstream re-synchs that could impact our operations (bandwidth in the office is roughly 30Mbps down/100 Mbps up, so having all 25 desktop clients resynching at the same time could create a network logjam).  It may make sense to make the changes late on a Friday so that all the synching can take place after hours and on the weekend.
  • I've been told that if any impacted file is open anywhere across the 25 users, any effort to make changes will automatically stop and then actually reverse the changes. 
  • It would make sense for us to take this opportunity to start using the Team folder functionality, though I'm curious about how rigidly permissions are enforced down through the child folders?
    • Info on makes it appear that child folders can still be setup with permissions that are independant from the parent -- is this true?  For example, if we use Team folders for Finance, and we need to add a child folder that an outside vender can access, can we do it without giving the outsider access to the entire Team folder for Finance?  Another example: can that same Team folder have a single child folder that could be shared with other users in our DB install so that those other users won't have access to the entire Finance Team folder?
  • Any other major pitfalls we need to think about before we start actually moving folders around?

Thanks in advance for any help the Dropbox Community can provide!


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Re: Best practices for a top-to-bottom DB reorg? Plus adding Team folders?


Hi Sean, we'd be happy to assist on this matter! 

The first thing we'd like to check is which kind of Dropbox Business team structure you're on. Do you have a purple folder with personal files on your account, or not?

If not, then you're on the old structure, and I've already compiled a useful post about how to (re)create your organization.

Regarding your queries:

  • Your measures are a good idea, last thing on a Friday evening when everyone is gone, leave the computers on, preventing any auto-power off.
  • Yes, no applications should be running as they could keep files open. It might also be a good idea for the antivirus/security software to take a short break. Virus scanning would keep files active too.
  • Team folders are only accessible to team members, however, subfolders can be shared with non-team members easily. They are very useful overall for security reasons, my articel goes into a little more detail on this.
  • If you have team members that can access files remotely, either via their home PC, mobile device, or just simply logging into their computer at work, then this will need to be curbed for the weekend. 

Hope this info helps!

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Re: Best practices for a top-to-bottom DB reorg? Plus adding Team folders?

Explorer | Level 4

Jay -

Thanks for the direct to these focused resources!  Great information.

At this stage, it seems like we need to first convert to a Team Space, create our new Groups and Team Folders, set the subfolder permissions (for external parties who share folders with us) and then start migrating files.  With that in mind, I've got a big additional question:

If we convert to a Team Space, will our existing folders and files remain unaffected (in so much as the existing folder structure and permissions stays intact)?  In terms of managing a migration, it would be great if we were able to make the conversion, setup the new Groups and Team Folders, and then create a migration schedule wherein we could *copy* (as opposed to move) the contents of our existing department folders into the new structure. 

This would allow me to migrate my admin team's files first (to get a sense of how much time it will take on our 100 up/down Internet line) while keeping my program teams insulated from any hiccups; however, it only works if the various teams' existing folders and files remain as-is, even though we convert the entire account to a Team Space.  As each team is successfully migrated to the new folder structure and we get their individual desktops synched with the DB servers, we could then archive all of the old folders until we're assured that we made a clean transition to the Team Space product.

It seems like we may also have another option, though I'm not sure if it's feasible: convert everyone to online-only files (eliminating the local copy on the desktop) until we make the conversion and get files/folders migrated to the new format, and then allow folks to start having local copies of their data, perhaps staggering with one or two employees a day so that we don't crush our bandwidth.  Curious if you're aware of anyone who has taken this approach?


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Best practices for a top-to-bottom DB reorg? Plus adding Team folders?
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