U-M Dropbox: Making Files and Folder Online-Only

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U-M Dropbox


How to make files and folders online-only through the desktop client.


If you are using the web version of Dropbox and do not have the desktop client on your computer, files and folders are automatically online-only.

If you have the desktop client installed on your computer, you can turn on Smart Sync so files that you don’t open from your computer for a few months become online-only automatically and new files you add online become online-only by default. That way, the files that you don’t regularly use won’t take up space on your computer.

  1. Open your Dropbox desktop app preferences
  2. Click the Sync tab
  3. Under Save hard drive space automatically, select On

Note anytime you open an online-only file, Dropbox automatically changes it to be “local” again, but you can manually change it back to online-only at any time.

To set a file or folder to online-only manually, using Smart Sync:

  1. Open File Explorer (Windows) or Finder (Mac)
  2. Open the Dropbox folder
  3. Right-click the file or folder you’d like to set to online-only
  4. Hover over Smart Sync
  5. Click Online Only. If you’d like to save your file back to your computer’s hard drive again, click Local

Additional Information

For the most up-to-date information and a general how to guide for using Smart Sync, please see the following site: https://help.dropbox.com/installs-integrations/sync-uploads/smart-sync

Need additional information or assistance? Contact the ITS Service Center.


Article ID: 6222
Fri 8/20/21 11:48 AM
Fri 8/20/21 1:22 PM