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Smart Sync--new user question, monitoring status of files

New member | Level 2

Hi Everyone! First post on these forums, still a new Dropbox Professional user (using it for the first time at a new job).

In trying to manage massive file syncs for animation projects, I'm often left in this void of tons of folders with the syncing icon, with no way to tell whether a) which way files are currently syncing (online>local, or local>online) and b) the progress of individual files or folders.

Does such a thing exist? And if so, where?

Using Mac OS, currently High Sierra but will be updating soon.

Thanks for your help!

3 Replies

Re: Smart Sync--new user question, monitoring status of files

Dropboxer

Hey there @jauxsoh - thanks for using Smart Sync and welcome to our Community!

Now, when it comes to an option to see which way your files/folders are syncing, i.e. from 'Local' to 'Online Only' or vice-versa, I have to inform you that it isn't available at the moment, however, you can always look at the Dropbox icon in your menu bar and see if it is done syncing. When Dropbox is fully synced then you should see a tick followed by the words “Up to date” on the menu

As per the progress of files or folders, their syncing icons should be indicative of their status. The blue circle with rotating arrows icon on a file/folder signifies that it's in the process of syncing to Dropbox. 

In addition, as we are always looking for our users' input when creating the next versions of our desktop application, I will make sure your comments are passed along to our development team for future consideration - thank you for your constructive feedback!

Last but not least, I'm not sure if you're familiar with this but you can prioritize which files you'd like to sync first following the steps outlined in the Help Center article below:

https://help.dropbox.com/installs-integrations/sync-uploads/prioritize-files-sync

I hope this information helps and please let me  know if you have anything else to ask or add; I'll be happy to follow up. 

 


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


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Re: Smart Sync--new user question, monitoring status of files

New member | Level 2

Hi Walter,

Thanks for your quick response! I figured as much, and that I would've found it already if it did exist. I'm definitely interested in a feature that lets users monitor the status of all their syncs, similar to a downloads window in a web browser. 

I imagine I'm not the only one running into the problem I have, so let me take this chance to detail it:

Specifically, the issue I'm having came up when I realized that DropBox had started to sync more files than my computer had room for. Sometimes, when using programs like After Effects, Dropbox will start syncing the assets that the program is looking for without asking my permission if I want to make them local, and oftentimes I leave them online-only because I don't intend to work with those specific assets. So while in the middle of syncing, I clicked on folders to make them online-only again in order to stop them from syncing. But this gets confusing when the icon next to the folders doesn't change--they were syncing online>local before I switched them, and now presumably they're syncing from local>online, but there's no confirmation of that, so I have no idea if DropBox is still trying to sync the files that'll max out my storage.

Having a monitor where you can see progress and direction of syncing would solve the problem--I'd be able to know if DropBox is doing what I asked, and also how long it'll be before I can access the files that I do need.

That said, I also don't see the "sync first" option next to my files. Is this a Selective-sync only feature, and not a Smart Sync feature?

Thanks again!

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Re: Smart Sync--new user question, monitoring status of files

Dropboxer

Thanks for your quick response and extensive feedback @jauxsoh - this definitely helps paint a better picture of what you initially had in mind and the rationale behind it. 

Now, as per the behavior with some 3rd party apps you described, I wanted to let you know that it's expected as these may look (or try to access - even for previewing purposes sometimes) at files that you may have not manually opened and in order to fulfill these requests from these processes Dropbox syncs the files down to your device (from Online Only to Local). As you might already know, examples of this include:

  • Backup services
  • Antivirus
  • Recently used file lists
  • Third party applications that monitor files in general (like Adobe's After Effects you mentioned). 

If a file has been synced locally that you would prefer to have online-only, you'll simply need to right click on it and select online-only from the Smart Sync menu.

Please note that if there are applications that constantly or persistently look at your files, your files may come back following the behavior described above even if you didn't recall them manually.

If this is the case, I'd suggest you to test by temporarily quitting or disabling applications systematically until you see that the issue is resolved. The last application that you closed when the issue no longer occurred may be the one performing this action.

As per your last inquriy, note that you can’t prioritize folders or package files - could that be the reason you're not seeing this option?

In closing, I'd like to thank you one more time for providing me with your use-case and additional information surrounding your feedback - I'll be passing those to the team as well. 

 


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


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