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Dropbox stuck syncing, won't let me delete files

Helpful | Level 5

Hello,

My Dropbox is taking forever to sync.

Over a month now I started having issues when syncing shared files. I could manually upload and download the latest version of a shared file via browser, but my files wouldn't sync locally. It took me a while to notice it, so I lost hours of work and had a few arguments with work mates, because I wasn't seeing their edits and they weren't seeing mine. When I finally discovered that my local files weren't up to date, I found the Dropbox app was stuck syncing over 2,500,000 files (it probably was because I moved the location of the root folder of a big project containing millions of files, so I guess Dropbox was having difficulties relocating that many files).

Over a month later, I got sick of having to manually download and upload every single file I wanted to edit, so I cancelled my paid account, and moved to a different company. The thing is, I need to use Dropbox for a few (light) things because it's the platform where I share it with a few others , but even though I moved away almost everything it still says it's syncing over 2,200,000 files, and won't let me sync anything because it says my Dropbox is full.

Long story short: After moving away almost all of the files that I had stored on Dropbox I cancelled my Dropbox Pro account, but it is still syncing millions of files and says I'm using over 4000 % of my free storage. I moved away those files locally, but they continue to appear via browser. When trying to delete them via browser, it says they're too many and asks me to do it locally.

What can I do to delete those files from my Dropbox?

Thanks,

Serafin

 

13 Replies

Re: Dropbox stuck syncing, won't let me delete files

Dropboxer
Dropboxer
Hi Serafin, have you tried deleting the files directly from the Dropbox folder on your machine instead of online?
 
If this doesn’t work, try deleting the files from the Dropbox site in smaller batches instead of all at once. Once a batch has been deleted, delete another batch, and so on until your account is under quota.
 
Let me know how it goes!

Jay
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support


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Re: Dropbox stuck syncing, won't let me delete files

Helpful | Level 5

Hi Jay,

Thanks a lot for your quick answer.

I did delete them on my computer, in fact, they aren't there, they're outside of the main Dropbox folder. But the Dropbox app is still syncing, and they do appear online.

They are many, many files (10 years of work, some of it are Unity projects which contain hundreds of thousands of small files), so it could take days to delete them manually in small batches.

Is there perhaps a way to "format" my Dropbox to radically delete everything?

Thanks,

Serafin

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Re: Dropbox stuck syncing, won't let me delete files

Dropboxer
Dropboxer
Currently, there isn’t a way to start from a ‘clean slate’ on your Dropbox account.
 
Since the Dropbox desktop application is constantly syncing, one thing you can try is to unlink the app itself and then delete the files in batches online.
 
While this can be time consuming, it would prevent the desktop app from syncing deletions as well from its end.
 
When the account is suitably empty, you can relink your Dropbox desktop application again for it to sync the few files you need.

Jay
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support


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Re: Dropbox stuck syncing, won't let me delete files

Helpful | Level 5

Hi,

Thanks again for your promptness.

I'll try that. Is there an estimated amount of files that I can try to delete per batch? I've tried deleting project folders, but with most of those I tried it says too many files.

Serafin

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Re: Dropbox stuck syncing, won't let me delete files

Dropboxer
Dropboxer
The number can vary, so I don’t have an approximate number of files you can delete in one go, sorry.
 
The best way to start is by deleting subfolders within project folders until you’re able to delete entire projects in one go, and continue from there.

Jay
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support


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Re: Dropbox stuck syncing, won't let me delete files

Helpful | Level 5

Hi Jay,

I've been doing that, and so far is quite faster than I expected.

However, there's one subfolder that I can't delete because it has too many files, but I can't open it either to go deeper and delete smaller batches/subfolders. When clicking on it, an error message appears: "There was a problem completing this request", and it automatically goes back to the main Dropbox folder.
(*In case it helps, it's in a Unity project folder > Library > Occlusion)

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Re: Dropbox stuck syncing, won't let me delete files

Dropboxer
Dropboxer
Just in case, could you try switching browsers to see if this helps? 
 
Otherwise, use incognito/private browsing mode without any extensions running, and clearing your cache to see if you can access, and then delete that folder.

Jay
Community Moderator @ Dropbox
https://dropbox.com/support


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Re: Dropbox stuck syncing, won't let me delete files

Helpful | Level 5

Hi Jay,

Thanks again for your support.

I tried other browsers and going incognito but that folder won't open.

I've done the following:

- I unlinked my Dropbox app as you suggested.
- I deleted in batches all the files in my Dropbox via browser --apart from that folder that contains millions of files and seems Dropbox is struggling with.
- I relinked my Dropbox app, making sure that the Dropbox folder in my computer was empty beforehand, telling the app to only sync that problematic folder, and allowing unlimited bandwidth.
- It's been syncing for about a day now, and it says there are still 1,200,000 files to go, but that number is slowly going down (it was over 2,500,000 when it started). Hopefully it will be done in one or two more days.
- My plan is, when it finishes sincyng, to delete the folder in my computer.

It's taking a long time, but if it finally solves the problem after two months struggling with it it'll be worth it. I'll let you know when it finishes. I just posted this to keep you updated.

Best,

Serafin

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Re: Dropbox stuck syncing, won't let me delete files

Helpful | Level 5

Hi Jay,

So I deleted everything online, apart from that folder that I couldn't delete nor open via browser; relinked my computer; synced that folder; and deleted it from my computer.

Everything good until that last step, but the Dropbox app has been syncing since I deteled that folder --4 days ago-- at a very slow rate, approximately 10,000 files per day, and it still has 1,988,000 to go.

What can i do?

Thanks,

Serafin

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