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Shared folder owner account deleted – how to manage folder now?

New member | Level 2

I have a shared folder, shared with and used by about several dozen different users in a club I’m a member of. I was the one who originally created and shared the folder several years ago, and I think I did so using a different Dropbox account from my own (one connected to my club e-mail address rather than my private e-mail address).

When I log in as myself and try to edit the folder settings, I’m told that I do not have permission to do so because I am not the owner. That would make sense if I did indeed create and share the folder from the club account.

However, I cannot figure out who actually is the owner of the folder. This help page says I should open the “Share” link for the folder and then the popup window will specify who the owner is – but it doesn’t. It gives me a list of the users with whom the folder has been shared, but it does not list the creator of the folder and none of the users listed is in any way indicated to be the owner.

I have a user name and password saved in my browser, matching the club e-mail address I would have used to create the folder originally, but when I attempt to log in with these credentials, I’m told the password is incorrect. The “I forgot my password” page does not result in any e-mail being received.

I never actually really used the club account for anything other than creating and sharing this folder, so I’m thinking the account was probably deleted due to inactivity at some point. The help page “Deleting a Dropbox account” says that “Files you shared in shared folders are still available to folder members”, which would match my experience here – the owner is deleted, but the files remain for the existing folder members. Edit: I just found an old e-mail in my club inbox entitled “Your Dropbox account is closing unless you take action” which confirms this. The account is closed.

But how do I then manage the folder, when there is no longer an owner? This page suggests basically deleting the shared folder, creating a new one, and inviting everyone again. That hardly seems ideal to me, since there are several dozen users with different permissions to different subfolders of that folder. It would take forever to recreate.

Is there some way to transfer ownership to me when the original creator has been deleted due to inactivity? If all else fails, is it something the Dropbox support team can help me with?

1 Reply

Re: Shared folder owner account deleted – how to manage folder now?

Super User II

@Oisiiin wrote:

But how do I then manage the folder, when there is no longer an owner? This page suggests basically deleting the shared folder, creating a new one, and inviting everyone again. That hardly seems ideal to me ...


If ownership wasn't transferred before the owner account was deleted, then there's no way to transfer ownership now. Dropbox Support will not be able to assist.

Your only options are to continue using the folder as is, or create a new shared folder, re-invite everyone to it and move the content to the new folder.

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Hi anonymous,

If you need more help you can log a ticket with our Support Team here (expected response time 24 hours), or contact us on Twitter or Facebook.

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