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Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?

New member | Level 2

So my company recently decided to transition from a physcial server to Dropbox Business accounts. When I set up my account I specifically remember clicking the online-only option. 

I've been migrating some of my client folders over from the server to dropbox and have noticed about 600GB on my hard drive when I decided to just look at my system information. 

What is going on lol!? The whole point of dropbox smart sync is to have these files in the cloud right? I see all of my files on my HD now, taking up all of the space.  I have gone back and specifically right clicked on files to smart sync them to online only as well.

Any help or information on this problem would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

12 Replies

Re: Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?

Dropboxer

Hey there @gdennison, how are you today?

Could you first tell me the exact status of the app on your computer? 

Also, can you share a screenshot of where exactly you've spotted the discrepancy you mention? 

Remember, there are various places to see the size of a file in Finder. Some of these locations will display the logical size, others the physical size. A Smart Sync placeholder takes up approximately 0kb, this is the pysical size. The logical size of the file is the actual size of the file, if it were downloaded to the device.

To see both the logical and physical file size:
1. Right click on a file/folder
2. Select 'Get info'
3. In the properties window you will see the original file size, followed by the actual on-disk size.

For example:428,510 bytes (0 KB on disk)

It is important to be able to view both sizes, not just to reassure you that the file is not taking up space, but also to understand the space and speed implications of returning the file(s).

In other views of Finder, the operating system will report the logical size. For this reason you shouldn't be concerned if it initially appears that the placeholder is taking up space. To confirm the file or folder is not taking up space, please check via the above steps. Files that are not taking up space on disk will have an icon overlay that changes from the usual green tick to the grey cloud icon, denoting that the file isn't locally present.

Please note that third party disk management software may not read the physical size of a Smart Sync placeholder, therefore that software may not correctly report disk usage.

I hope this information helps and please keep me posted on your findings!

 


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


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Re: Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?

New member | Level 2

I'm doing well.

What do you mean by status of the app?

I just checked some files and it says the actual file sizes are on disk. There is no 0kb on disk. The full filsize seems to be on my HD.

Attached a screenshot of my system information which shows in the Documents section that all of my dropbox files are on my HD.

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Re: Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?

New member | Level 2

Screenshot copy.jpg

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Re: Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?

Dropboxer

Thanks for the swift reply @gdennison!

Dropbox takes time to transfer files between your computer and our servers while most standard consumer ISPs offer 1/10th the upload speed when compared to the download speed and larger files will take longer to sync.

You can always look at the Dropbox icon in your menu bar (Mac) 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 (the message you see there would be the status of the app I mentioned in my previous response). 

If you do not see this then can you please let me know what the message being displayed there reads?

PS: You can boost the syncing process by changing your bandwidth settings if needed. 

 


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


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Re: Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?

New member | Level 2

I came into the office this morning and it says it is up to date with a green check.

I checked the system information and there is an additional 170 GB on there this morning.

Left side is this morning. Right side is last night before I left work. You can see that there is alot more GB in the Documents but somehow there is more space available it says? I'm so confused. I just really don't want to have to worry about the HD space, I thought that was the whole point of cloud storage?

Screen Shot 2019-03-27 at 8.39.10 AM copy.jpg

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Re: Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?

Dropboxer

Oh, I see now @gdennison - thanks! 

From what I can tell based on your screenshot all's well at the moment. Read on for some additional information - I hope this will clarify matters for you. 

When it comes to our desktop application, the Dropbox software is designed to watch your Dropbox folder and sync any files placed in the folder. Your Dropbox folder is just like any other folder on your hard drive, but with syncing features.

To take advantage of Dropbox, you can either move or copy files into the Dropbox folder. This will place the files into the Dropbox folder. Once Dropbox sees changes in the Dropbox folder, it automatically syncs the new changes to Dropbox servers and to any other computer linked to your account.

As you probably know, you can also access your Dropbox online at:

https://www.dropbox.com

Moving on to your main concern now, note that Smart Sync and Selective Sync enable users to choose which of their files and folders sync and take up space on their local device.

With Smart Sync, users can see and seamlessly access all the content they have in their Dropbox, right from their desktops, without worrying about local hard drive space. Files and folders take up practically no space on the local device until they’re needed, and they can be accessed with a simple click.

Selective Sync lets users choose which content in their Dropbox is synced, but unsynced content is completely hidden on the local device. This can be useful if you know you will not need access to a folder from this specific device and want to free up hard drive space.

Through the use of Smart Sync you are able to view everything in your Dropbox without overloading your hard drive space - all the while having everything available online and accessible just like regular files.

Selective Sync can be set by a user directly on their Dropbox desktop application, removing the local copies of whichever folder the user chooses. The feature is available to Dropbox Basic, Plus, Professional, and Business users.

I hope this clears things up and I'm always a post away should you have any more questions. 

 


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


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Re: Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?

New member | Level 2

I understand the difference between Selective and Smart Sync. Everything is Smart Synced. However all of the files are still on my HD as you can see in my screenshots. It's taking up a ton of space locally when I have everything set to Online Only through Smart Sync. 

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Re: Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?

Dropboxer

I don't even see the syncing icons on the files your screenshot includes @gdennison - could you elaborate on why you think this is not working? 

 


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


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Re: Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?

New member | Level 2

Screenshots were just of the HD showing you how much space Dropbox Files were taking up. Not of the actual Dropbox.

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Smart Sync? Files are all clearly still on my Hard Drive taking up space!?
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