Unable To Share Files via Dropbox on the Web


U-M Dropbox


When a user enters a collaborator's email address into the sharing dialog box in U-M Dropbox on the web, the collaborator's information does not populate as an option to select. (Even though the collaborator has a U-M Dropbox account and should appear.)  


The workaround to this issue is:

  1. Click Share on the file or folder you want to share. A sharing dialog box will open
  2. Wait about 30 to 60 seconds before entering a collaborator's email address into the sharing text field. You should now see the populated results that match the collaborator for which you're looking

    Note: You may need to retry this step a few times before Dropbox populates the user/group.

  3. Click Share folder or Share file to share the file/folder with the collaborator

Example of a collaborator not appearing in the drop-down

Dropbox sharing dialog box for a folder named "Test." In the text field, "madiatk@umich.edu". The drop-down only shows "Import contacts".

Example of a collaborator correctly appearing in the drop-down

Dropbox sharing dialog box for folder named "Test". In text field says "madia". In the drop-down is shows the correct ID of "Madi Atkins madiatk@umich.edu".

Another workaround to try is to enter the name in the field, wait 60 seconds, delete text, and re-enter the name, wait, and repeat until it populates. If it still doesn't populate, then we recommend you use the Dropbox desktop app.

Additional Information

Note: The Dropbox desktop application does not require a workaround/waiting period. We recommend suggesting the user use the desktop app if this problem persists.

The issue is that the collaborator's information does not populate when a user enters their email address to share with them. When the user attempts to share with the collaborator's email address anyway, the file is never shared (although it appears as it did) and the collaborator does not receive an email invite. The issue seems to be related to the web browser’s ability to download the list of contacts that are ultimately used to auto-populate the sharing list. U-M has a very large list and it can take U-M Dropbox a while to populate. Other variables, such as slow systems/network or lots of browser tabs open, can also cause slowness in loading the Dropbox contact list.


Article ID: 4872
Thu 4/15/21 12:13 PM
Wed 10/6/21 6:39 PM

Related Articles (1)

This article provides additional information for adding a shared folder to your account or viewing a shared file in U-M Dropbox.