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Level 3

Dropbox Mobile on Surface

I am an iPad user and recently purchased a Surface Book hoping for the same level of Dropbox features as on the iPad with the Dropbox Mobile for Windows from the Microsoft Store. Both iPad and Surface Book has 256GB of drive space. 

 

I am disappointed that Dropbox Mobile for Windows does not offer the same level of feaures as the Dropbox app on iPad.  The integration between MS office and Dropbox is lacking for creating and saving documents; scanning document to a folder using the camera is lacking; equivalent "safe sync" does not seem to be available, though "safe sync" is available on the Dropbox Professionsal version at twice the cost of Dropbox Plus which I suscribe to. 

 

Will the equivalent features of the Dropbox iPad app ever be offered for the Microsoft Surface's through the Dropbox Mobile app?

 

Users have struggled with trying to minimize the Dropbox storage space on the Surface such as trying to move the Dropbox folder to SD cards with no avail which I understand Dropbox's rationale as to why.  Compression of the Dropbox folder is not an adequate solution.

 

As a Dropbox Plus user Dropbox is great in solving many of my needs with its integration with office, document backup, sharing, and use across platforms.  It just seems the Dropbox Mobile for Windows is lacking at this time (or purposely limited)  which constrains its use on the mobile Surface models with limited memory. Also I am limited in upgrading to the Professional Dropbox at twice the annual cost of the Plus.

5 Replies
Dropboxer

Re: Dropbox Mobile on Surface

Hey leebw, I appreciate the time you devoted in writing in to us on our Forum! 
 
Let me follow-up on your inquiry a bit more closely & advise on how to best approach the issue you’re facing. As it’s my understanding that your main concern at the moment is saving up some hard disc space on your Surface, could you please clarify whether you’re using the Windows mobile app or the client? 
 
You may keep in mind that your options should vary depending on your current setup, namely: 
 
#1. In case you’re using our desktop application, you may use Selective Sync as an alternative to moving your Dropbox folder. Have you looked into this option? 
#2. If, on the other hand, you’re using the Windows mobile app, then you’ll have to check your Account Settings (gear) on the “Manage Cache System” option, as below to clear any cached items: 
 
Following, as it seems to me that you’d need to get to the bottom of the matter as soon as possible, I’ve ran a search on our system on my end, I’ve located your open ticket & I can see that this has currently reached our higher-level technicians, who’ll further address your queries. 
 
Of course, I’m also here for you, so I’d happily follow-up on your request in any way I can. Please include any detail could help me determine the best course of action & I’ll make sure to check back with you here. Thanks! 



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


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Level 3

Re: Dropbox Mobile on Surface

I am using Dropbox Windows having tried the Dropbox Mobile version which seems to be currently lacking.

 

My interim solution on the Surface Book  was to moved some of my less urgent dropbox files to an SD card.  The SD card has the target location for storing selective dropbox files; this target is a directory DBsync.  The command dklink was used to create a junction folder called DBsync within dropbox on the c drive.  I then moved selective dropbox folders to the dropbox DBsync folder.  Thereafter anything stored in the dropbox folder DBsync is automatically directed to the SD folder DBsync where data is actually physically stored on my Surface.   

 

Dropbox still sees and syncs all my files even those offloaded to the SD card on my Surface.  iPad and iPhone, which seems to have a more effective dropbox storage management, still has full access to the dropbox files, as well as my dropbox on the web which keeps a backup for DBsync should it ever be detached momentarily. 

 

Dropbox does not recommend use of the SD card since it can be detached and files may be presumed to be deleted. But, deleted files can be recovered from the dropbox web.  Also, it seems that when the SD card is reattached on the Surface Book it will resync the junction folder which  resides within Dropbox directory.

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Dropboxer

Re: Dropbox Mobile on Surface

Thanks for looping back here with these additional details leebw!
 
As we advise against using Symlinks (you may be at additional risk for unusual behavior or even data loss), I’d rather suggest moving the Dropbox folder instead, so as to avoid any unexpected issues in the future. To my mind, your best bet after moving the Dropbox folder would be to Selectively Sync the files you don’t need on your device & keep only the content you are currently editing, following the steps illustrated in this resource. 
 
Hopefully the tips above help you in regards to your storage needs, though I’ve also made sure to pass your comments in regards to your small Hard Disc space to our team specialists. 
 
Of course, I’m always here in case you’d need further assistance, just let me know in your next message & I’ll make sure to promptly follow-up with you!



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


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Level 3

Re: Dropbox Mobile on Surface

I appeciate the response and advise.  The ideal solution is for Dropbox to offer Smart Sync to Dropbox Plus users.  As Plus user the 1 TB is limited if I cannot utilize the storage optimally on my hardware platforms consisting of Windows Surface, iPad, iPhone, and Android phone. Dropbox is fantastic in supporting different platforms and integration with various apps and MS Office.  It seems like the dropbox on iPad and iPhone has smart sync as a base offering.    

 

Solution needs to resolve my need which is to have as much of my data available across different platforms with limited disk storage.  Selective Sync imposes limitations and requires me to take files out of Dropbox.  

 

The interim solution uses one of many folders in Dropbox.  This psuedo folder links (junction) to a physical folder on the SD card.  It seems that if the SD card is detached it will resync once reattached since the content will reappear in the psuedo folder of Dropbox. If the content of the psuedo folder is indeed deleted it seems like it can be recovered from the deleted files retained on Dropbox.com. This psuedo folder also enable me to offload the "camera upload" folder at times to the psuedo folder.  I have two camera upload folders 1 and 2 in the psuedo folders and the photos are readily available on all my platforms; and on the Surface the photos do not take critical C driver space.

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Dropboxer

Re: Dropbox Mobile on Surface

Hey leebw, I’d happily clarify with a bit more info below! 
 
You may keep in mind that the mobile application functionality is slightly different than that of client. In other words, our mobile app doesn’t take up any physical space on your phone, as the files are temporarily cached. [Note: Items that you make available offline will take up space until they are removed. The Dropbox app also stores certain items in cache for a quicker loading experience in our app, such as previewing documents, PDFs, and photos. These items are only cached for a certain period of time, and then the app will clear this space automatically (based on when the file was last viewed and the amount of space you have on your device).]
 
On the other hand, the Dropbox desktop app is just like using any other folder on your hard drive, taking up your device’s hard disc space, as they’re physically stored on your pc. 
 
That being said, you may keep in mind that currently Smart sync is available to Professional & Dropbox Business users, though because I understand that the feature is important to you, I’d suggest considering other plans. I’ve also made sure to pass your interest up the ladder for further consideration, as our higher level technicians are collecting & tracking all feedback requests to inform ongoing development of new features. I've included our discussion here on our list.
 
Last but not least, let me re-iterate that Symlinks aren’t currently supported (hence I can’t further comment on how possible deletions could be handled), therefore I’ll have to re-direct you to either use our Windows mobile app on your Surface (which will definitely help you save up some space) or apply Selective sync for some of your content that you don’t need to have available locally in case you prefer using our desktop app on your Surface. 
 
I hope that my tips above help you more in reaching a viable resolution in regards to your inquiry & I’m always here to discuss any additional inquiries you may have in more detail!



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


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