By Zoey twitter/ Last Updated December 1, 2021

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Dropbox Says up to Date but Not

"When I upload files to my Dropbox desktop folder and then try to open the files on my other computer, they are not there but it says 'Dropbox is up to date'. Any ideas about what can I do for the 'Dropbox says syncing but not' issue? Thanks.”

Dropbox is a great cloud storage software, but as mentioned in the case above, it is not as stable as one would expect and can run into problems such as "Dropbox is syncing but it says it is not syncing".


As there are many causes for Dropbox not syncing, many users do not know how to fix it. For this reason, this tutorial has compiled 5 effective solutions to help you get your Dropbox back to normal.

It is worth mentioning that these methods are also applicable to other situations, such as Dropbox smart sync not working in Windows 10, and paid Dropbox is not syncing, etc. We hope this will help you.

5 Solutions to “Dropbox Says Syncing but Not”

What should I do if I encounter the problem "Dropbox says syncing but not"? Don't worry, we can try the following 5 methods in order to find the best solution for you.

Solution 1. Check Files, Networks and Storage Space

Check and address the following primary issues to ensure that the Dropbox not syncing problem is not related to your network, sync settings and storage space.

Check if the file is open: Whether your file is open when Dropbox syncs, if it is, close it.

Check for special characters: Check that your file name does not contain special characters, if it does please remove it and sync the file again. Please note that /\<>:"| ? * and spaces are also special characters and should not exceed 255 characters in length.

Check for files with the same name: If you have more than one file with the same name, your files will not be synchronized, just rename your files.

Check your network: Check the network connection of each device. If you are using data traffic maybe you will need to switch to Wi-Fi.

Check the file types: Dropbox cannot sync the following file types, which may prevent it from syncing:

File types such as "desktop.ini", "thumbs.db", ".ds_store", ". icon\r", ".dropbox" and ".dropbox.attr".

Temporary files created by applications (e.g. Microsoft Word, Excel or PowerPoint). They are usually marked with a "~$" (wavy sign and dollar sign) or ". ~" (period and wavy character) as the opening name.

Some certain types of files and metadata, such as symbolic links, aliases, shortcuts, directory links, resource forks, network folders, and extended attributes.

Files that Dropbox has flagged as copyright infringing, violating DMCA policies or malware. When this issue occurs, you may see an error message indicating that permissions have been denied or that your file has been rejected by the server. If you meet the case, please contact a member of staff.

Check your cloud storage: If your cloud storage space is full, it will not sync either and you need to pay for it.

After checking and dealing with files, network, and storage space, see if the problem has been solved and if not move to the next solution.

Solution 2. Enable Firewall Permissions

For security reasons, the Windows Defender firewall restricts applications, which may cause the problem of "Dropbox stop syncing". Thus, you need to enable Windows Defender firewall permissions.

You can follow these steps to enable firewall permissions:

1. Use the "Windows + R" key combination to open the Run dialog box, type "control" and click "OK" to open the Control Panel.

Open The Control Panel

2. In the top right corner of the Control Panel, switch the view to "Large Icons" and find "Windows Defender Firewall". In the left sidebar, select "Allow applications or features to pass through Windows Defender Firewall".

Windows Defender Firewall

3. Click "Change settings" in the upper right corner, then click "Allow other applications" in the lower right corner.

Allow Other Apps

4. Select the path to Dropbox in the pop-up window and click Add.

Add Path

5. Next, you will see Dropbox in the list of applications. Click the Dropbox checkbox, then click the Dedicated and Public checkboxes on the same line as Dropbox and click OK.

Check Dropbox

After allowing fire permissions, see if the problem has been solved and if not move to the next solution.

Solution 3. Uninstall and Reinstall Dropbox

Uninstall and reinstall is a common method that usually solves most of the Dropbox problems. When you have no way to solve the problem, you can consider uninstalling and reinstalling the Dropbox app to solve the problem.

Here are the detailed steps to uninstall and reinstall Dropbox:

1. Use the "Windows + R" key combination, type "appwiz.cpl" in the Run dialog box, click "Enter", find Dropbox and click Uninstall, then restart your computer.

Uninstall Dropbox Programe

2. Press the "Windows + E" key combination to open File Explorer, type %LOCALAPPDATA% in the address bar, and press "Enter".

Open File Explorer To Type

3. Right-click on the Dropbox file and select "Delete" from the menu. Go back to File Explorer and continue typing %APPDATA%, %PROGRAMFILES(X86)% and %PROGRAMFILES%, and delete the Dropbox folder from these directories, then reinstall Dropbox.

Delete The Dropbox File

Solution 4. Modify the Properties of Files

Dropbox is unable to sync read-only files or files locked by non-Dropbox apps, so you need to modify the file properties to allow Dropbox to sync smoothly.

For Windows version: If you encounter a “Dropbox not syncing windows 10” issue, please check if your files are read-only in File Properties and cancel the option.

Cancel The Read Only Option

For Mac version: Please check if your document is locked in the file information and unlock it (the way the file is locked: with a lock icon).

After modifying the read-only property or non-Dropbox application locked files, check if the problem has been solved, if not move to the next solution.

Solution 5. Disable Dropbox Selective Sync

Selective syncing is a Dropbox feature that lets you freely choose the files or folders you need to send to the cloud. Some users activate Selective Sync while using Dropbox and forget it performs, leading them to think that there is a problem so Dropbox does not synchronize. For this reason, you need to disable Dropbox Selective Sync.

Let’s see how to disable Dropbox Selective Sync feature;

1. Open the Dropbox application, click the "Settings" button in the upper right corner, and select "Preferences" in the drop-down menu.

Dropbox Preferences

2. Find "Selective Sync" and turn it off, then Dropbox will sync your entire list of files.

Dropbox Selective Sync Windows

The Easiest Way to Backup to Dropbox - CBackup

If the above 5 solutions are not able to fix the problem, you may try a third-party tool to help you complete Dropbox file synchronization, such as this free cloud backup software CBackup is a good choice.

CBackup is a free and practical cloud backup software that currently supports third-party cloud drives including Google Drive, Dropbox and OneDrive, allowing you to easily backup local files to the above-mentioned third-party cloud drives, and enable cloud to cloud backup and cloud to cloud sync.

CBackup is easy to use and stable, so you can avoid the issue of "Dropbox stuck syncing" completely. So how to use CBackup to backup local files to Dropbox? First of all, we need to download and install CBackup client program, then follow the steps below:

1. Open your browser, register your free CBackup account, and log in to the CBackup client program.

Sign Up

2. Click the "My Storage" option on the left menu bar, and then click the "Add Cloud" option on the right window.

Add Cloud

3. Select "Dropbox" in the "Add Cloud" window, click "Add", and then follow the step-by-step instructions to grant CBackup access to Dropbox files.

Select Dropbox

4. Return to the CBackup interface, edit the Display name and Storage path of the Dropbox cloud drive, check the "Please do not change the path directly in the third-party cloud drive, or modify or delete backup files" option, and then click OK.

Complete Dropbox Info

5. Select the "Backup Tasks" button in the menu bar and click "New Task".

Create Task

6. Edit "Task Name" to name the backup task and click the "Add Source" button to add local files to be backed up, click "OK".

Add Source

7. Click "Add Destination", select "Single Cloud", then select the Dropbox account you added and click "OK".

Select Destination Single Cloud

8. After confirming that your Dropbox account has been successfully added, click "Start Backup" in the bottom right corner to start the task.

Start Backup

Note: Before starting a backup task, you can complete the settings of the function according to your situation. In the bottom left corner of the "New task" window, you can find "Settings".

Backup Settings

Scheduled backup: You can make your backup tasks auto, such as setting up single, daily, weekly, monthly backups to be performed unattended.

Email notification: Set up email notification when a backup task is executed successfully or failed.

File filter: You can filter the file types you don't want to backup by file filtering, and of course you can set the file types you want to backup.

When everything is done, you have finished backup your local files to Dropbox cloud, thus avoiding the “Dropbox says syncing but not” issue.

It's worth mentioning that if your Dropbox cloud storage space is full, you can also use CBackup to merge several Dropbox cloud spaces for free to get more cloud storage space without paying for Dropbox cloud space.


How to solve the problem of "Dropbox says syncing but not"? This tutorial provides you with 5 different solutions that can fix your issue. But if the above 5 solutions don't work, you may want to try the free third-party cloud backup software CBackup.

Although CBackup can't help you solve the problem directly, it allows you to avoid the problem completely. In addition, CBackup allows you to back up local files to the Dropbox cloud easily, and the permanent free online backup service it has allows you to freely combine third-party cloud storage to form a larger cloud storage space.

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