Sync Dropbox To Mac

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/Mac Tips /How to Activate Selective Syncing Dropbox on Mac

Here's a quick solution to learn how to sync Dropbox with your Mac. Access Dropbox settings by clicking on its icon on Finder and visiting its Preferences. Go to the Account section here to change settings of the selective sync feature. From here, you can select the folders that you wish to sync between Dropbox and Mac. Is there a possibility to change the Dropbox sync folder (aka 'Dropbox location') programmatically on Mac OSX? By programmatically I mean by executing some command line helper tool or by using the Dropbox API. I've searched around for this quite a long while now, but couldn't find any satisfying answers.

I recently bought a new MacBook Air - M1 2020 running Mac OS 11.1 - (20C69) - and migrated everything from my old MacBook. I noticed that dropbox had stopped syncing new local files created on the new MacBook Air to dropbox. I have deleted the app and reinstalled with the latest version of dropbox (115.4.601). Smart Sync is a Dropbox feature that helps you save space on your hard drive. Access every file and folder in your Dropbox account from your computer, using virtually no hard drive space. Smart Sync is available for Dropbox Plus and Professional customers, and members of Dropbox Business teams.

Storage space is very important when it comes to any device – whether it is a computer, a mobile phone, or a tablet. Without it, your device can run too slow. Or, you might want to add video files and images but you don’t have enough storage space to do so.

If you have a Mac computer, one of the biggest culprits when it comes to taking up your disk drive space is Dropbox. Once you have enabled syncing on your Dropbox, files uploaded to Dropbox might be placed on your Mac. Thus, it is taking up storage space.

In this article, we’ll delve into selective syncing Dropbox activation in order to help you save more storage space on your Mac computer. With selective syncing on Dropbox, you can choose which files you want to sync to your computer and which ones you don’t want to. Read on to learn more about selective syncing Dropbox activation on your Mac. Let’s get started.

Article GuidePart 1. Selective Syncing Dropbox Activation on MacPart 2. Bonus Tips for Saving More Space on Your MacPart 3. To Wrap It All Up

People Also Read:How to Find and Remove Dropbox Duplicate Files.How to Uninstall Dropbox from Mac?A Guide On How To Move Files From Android To Mac

Part 1. Selective Syncing Dropbox Activation on Mac

In this section, we will tell you how to activate selective syncing within Dropbox. Take note that files you don’t selectively sync to your Mac can still be acquired by visiting Dropbox using a web browser. Below are the steps you should follow for selective syncing Dropbox activation:

Step 01 – Visit the menu bar and then press the icon for Dropbox.

Step 02 – Press the gear icon. This is located within the lower section at the right.

Step 03 – Press the Preferences label.

Step 04 – Press the icon for “Account.

Step 05 – Press “Change Settings.” This is a button located right next to “Selective Sync.”

Step 06 – Check the particular folders you wish to be copied to your Mac computer.

Step 07 – Press the button for “Update.”


Step 08 – Dropbox will now ask for a confirmation if you really want to update the settings for Selective Sync. Now, press “Update” again.

Step 09 – Wait until Dropbox will remove the sync of the unchecked folders you have previously removed the mark from.

Once you want a particular file that is not synced to your Mac computer, you can simply visit Dropbox using Chrome, Firefox, or Safari, or any other browser you want. Then, you simply locate the file on the Dropbox account and then download it.

An important note to take note of that doing the selective syncing Dropbox activation won’t actually affect the storage space allocated within your own Dropbox account. The files within it can still be accessed and shared within devices connected to that account.

Thus, if your space has run out within Dropbox, you might need to upgrade the account for more storage space. Selective syncing Dropbox activation is a great way to get backspace within your local drive especially if you need it for more important files.

What Happens When You Uncheck Specific Shared Folders?

Dropbox Not Syncing On Mac

Once you uncheck a particular folder within the platform, it won’t be synced to your computer’s local drive anymore. All subfolders located within that unchecked folder will also be un-synced and removed from your local drive.

Take note that even though you uncheck a folder, you will still be a member if it is shared to you. The folder will also appear within your Dropbox online account if you want to see it. If it is a shared folder, it will still be kept and other members who have access to it can still see it.

For those who want to leave as a member of a shared folder, you can do so by leaving the shared folder if you wish. Also, if you are the owner of a specific shared folder, you actually have the option of unsharing it to other people.

Part 2. Bonus Tips for Saving More Space on Your Mac

Selective syncing Dropbox activation will only save you a few hundred megabytes or even a few gigabytes from your Mac computer. If you really want to have more storage space within your Mac, there’s a great trick for that.

We recommend the tool created by iMyMac. This tool is called iMyMac PowerMyMac. It is a multifunction tool that can be used to check the status of your Mac computer. In addition, it can be used to scan your entire device for junk and unnecessary files.

Once these unnecessary files are detected, they can be deleted with iMyMac PowerMyMac tool in order to free up more storage space within your computer. Plus, it will lead to the speeding up of your computer’s performance. This is because unnecessary files can clog up your computer’s system and lead to its sluggish performance.

This cleaner can detect different types of files including the following:

  • System Junk
  • Email Junk
  • iPhoto Junk
  • Similar Photos or Images
  • Trash Bins
  • Large & Old Files

In addition, iMyMac PowerMyMac software allows you to find duplicate files on Dropbox with its Duplicate Finder tool. In this way, duplicate files will no longer plague your computer system and take up local drive space.

You can save a whole lot more storage space with this software and you can use it to optimize the performance of your Mac in no time. Selective syncing Dropbox activation is not the only way you can save more space. PowerMyMac can help you too.

If you want to learn more about iMyMac PowerMyMac, you can visit the official website of iMyMac PowerMyMac. In addition, the user guide will help you learn the ropes on how to use the tool efficiently. In this way, you don’t have to worry about a poor-performing Mac anymore.

Part 3. To Wrap It All Up

In this article, we’ve taught you how to implement selective syncing Dropbox activation in order to free up more storage space within your Mac computer. Once you’ve followed the steps above, it can help you uncheck the folders you don’t want to sync to your local drive.

In addition, we’ve told you another tip on how to save up more space within your Mac. This is through iMyMac’s PowerMyMac tool. It’s a great software that can help you save more space by deleting unnecessary files.

We hope we gave you the right guide to help you with selective syncing Dropbox activation. Plus, we hope we’ve helped you learn how to save more space within your computer. What are your thoughts on our guide? We’d love to hear more from you. Simply comment in the section below to share your thoughts and feelings.

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Content of this article:

About Dropbox

Dropbox, one of the famous cloud storage services, is widely used in storing data on cloud, syncing files to multiple devices and platform, including Windows, Mac, iPhone, iPad, and Android. When you sync local folder to Dropbox or its folder, all the folders will be synced automatically to all your devices as long as there is an internet connection. You just need to log in with the same account on your devices.

Besides, you can sync folder outside Dropbox folder. You can directly copy and paste the folder you want to sync to Dropbox folder. If you want to see it at the original location, you can create a symbolic link (a sort of shortcuts) between Dropbox folder and the folder on your drive that you want to sync.

2 common ways to sync local folder to Dropbox

Way 1: Dropbox one way sync with Dropbox folder

The first thing is to download and install Dropbox on the local computer if you want to sync local folder with Dropbox. After downloading, your computer will have a Dropbox folder. It looks like a normal folder, but it can automatically sync local folders to Dropbox once you put files inside and you can access files in Dropbox through this folder.

Now, follow the steps below to sync local folder with Dropbox folder.

Step 1. Open Dropbox folder by double-clicking Dropbox in the desktop.

Step 2. Copy and paste the local folders to Dropbox folder. Then, it will automatically sync to web-site.

Way 2: Sync local folder with Dropbox using Smart Sync

Dropbox File Not Syncing

Smart Sync is a new feature for Dropbox to help users save hard drive space automatically via Online-only option, which is only available on Plus, Professional or Business plans. Please note you can only view your files with an internet connection. It provides a free-trial for users still using the Basic plan, so you can try it before purchasing.

Then, let's start to sync local folder with Smart Sync feature.

Step 1. Open the Dropbox folder on your computer.

Step 2. Select the files you want to make online-only, right-click it, then choose Smart sync and Online-only option.


  • Except for the manually operation, you can still enable automatic smart sync feature. Click Dropbox icon at the system tray and your avatar, select Preferences, then tap on the Sync tab and tick On under Save hard drive space automatically.

  • Also, you can set the file added to web default as online-only.

Other things you need to know

1. If you want to sync folders to all your devices, you need to log in with the same email address and password on each device.

2. Dropbox service will monitor the Dropbox folder on the computer and other devices. And once there is a change, Dropbox will sync it automatically as long as there is an internet connection.

3. When your computer or other devices are offline, all the changes will be saved and synced again when it connects to internet.

4. Dropbox can only sync files in the Dropbox folder or mobile app. If you want to sync folder outside Dropbox, you need to add it to Dropbox folder.

5. Dropbox selective sync is diferent from Smart Sync, which refers to sync your folder on to local. If you have this need, you can go to References > Sync tab > Selective Sync, then uncheck the folder you don't want to sync to your computer.

Dropbox Sync Mac Sleep

Easier way to sync local folder outside Dropbox folder

To sync folder outside Dropbox folder, the simplest way is to copy and paste the folder you want to sync to Dropbox folder. After that, you can create a symbolic link so that you can see folder at its original location. Also, if you are using Plus, Professional or Business plan, Smart Sync is a great choice.

Besides, you still can use Dropbox alternative software - AOMEI Backupper Standard. It’s very easy to use. The sync process is automatic without any human intervention. And this software will keep the selected folder both online and local, you can view your files at any time.

More features of AOMEI Backupper:

  • Support multiple backup devices, such as, Google Drive, OneDrive, network drive, or NAS, external hard drive, USB drive, and more.

  • Schedule sync in daily/weekly/monthly: This feature can protect your data intact as much as possible and give you more backup versions while restoration.

  • Email notification: In an emergency, this feature can provide you the convenience of leaving directly without waiting for the final result. It will inform you if the task is sucessful through your email.

To sync local folder outside Dropbox folder, just use the following steps.

Step 1. Download Dropbox alternative - AOMEI Backupper, install and run it. Then, click Basic Sync under the Sync tab. To backup files to Dropbox for a copy of image file, click File Backup.

Step 2. Click + Add Folder and click Desktop, Libraries or This PC to find the local folder you want to sync.

Step 3. Click Drop-down menu and pitch on Select a cloud drive.

Step 4. Select Dropbox or its subfolder and then click OK to exit this window.

Note: If you want to sync local folder to Google Dive, click 'Google Drive' in the given picture above.

Step 5. Click Start Sync. If you want to create a scheduled backup, you can click Schedule, select any settings you want.


  • Don't modify the source folder name, otherwise the software will not sync changes anymore.

  • This software also supports 'Real-time sync', 'Mirror Sync' and 'Two-Way Sync', which can bring users much convenience. But all of them are available on the professional version of AOMEI Backupper.

Wrapping things up

Speaking of syncing local folder to Dropbox, you may think about the simplest way - using Dropbox folder on the desktop. In addition, Smart sync of Dropbox is an excellent choice, which can help you save hard drive space automatically via online-only option. You can also view these online files locally when your computer connect to network.

Syncing With Dropbox

But if you want to protect your files continously or enjoy other advanced features, you can turn to AOMEI Backupper Standard. It supports many useful features, such as, daily/weekly/monthly sync, event triggers, USB plug in etc. Try it and you will be pleasantly surprised.