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Installing a large DB for a new user: copying from USB or downloading?

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Installing a large DB for a new user: copying from USB or downloading?

I install dropbox on laptops for new employees. Currently our DB has about 100 Gb of files. If I do this via wifi we use about half of our allowed monthly internet traffic and it takes hours.

 

So I have tried just copying via an external HDD. I just wondered: are there any risks involved with this method? One risk I could think of, was that 'older' files on the HDD could overwrite newer ones in Dropbox, so I do this with an up to date copy during the evening. 

 

Would you consider this a sensible and safe method to setup a pretty filled DB on a new computer?

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Super User II

Re: Installing a large DB for a new user: copying from USB or downloading?

I do this every time I need to move or copy my Dropbox to a new computer. It's never been an issue and I've been doing it for years.

 

Install Dropbox on the new computer and link it to your account. When the installation is finished, Dropbox will immediately start to sync. Pause syncing or exit Dropbox, then copy your files into the newly created Dropbox folder. When the copy is complete, and not before, resume syncing or re-launch Dropbox.

At this point Dropbox will begin indexing all of your files. This process will take a while, especially if you have a lot of data to go through. During this time it may say that files are uploading or downloading, but it's only transferring comparison data and any changes that it finds. Be patient and LET IT WORK.


4 Replies
New Super User

Re: Installing a large DB for a new user: copying from USB or downloading?

Hi samenhuizen,

 

It should be fine using the USB method but I'm not sure it's supported by Dropbox in any way. As soon as you import all of the files Dropbox does a check to see which files look wrong. It'll mostly correct them, but anything it's unsure about it'll just make a copy. It won't overwrite new files with old, it'll just make a "conflicted copy" which will show in your Dropbox.

 

Hope this helps,

Dan

Solution
Super User II

Re: Installing a large DB for a new user: copying from USB or downloading?

I do this every time I need to move or copy my Dropbox to a new computer. It's never been an issue and I've been doing it for years.

 

Install Dropbox on the new computer and link it to your account. When the installation is finished, Dropbox will immediately start to sync. Pause syncing or exit Dropbox, then copy your files into the newly created Dropbox folder. When the copy is complete, and not before, resume syncing or re-launch Dropbox.

At this point Dropbox will begin indexing all of your files. This process will take a while, especially if you have a lot of data to go through. During this time it may say that files are uploading or downloading, but it's only transferring comparison data and any changes that it finds. Be patient and LET IT WORK.


Level 4

Re: Installing a large DB for a new user: copying from USB or downloading?

Thanks for the confirmation, that's how I usually do it indeed. I think this option could certainly be more documented or even facilitated by Dropbox. 

Level 2

Re: Installing a large DB for a new user: copying from USB or downloading?

HOW, precisely, do you "pause synching" or "exit dropbox" ?
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