Dropbox Using High CPU on Windows/Mac? Why and How to Fix It

If your computer is suffering from Dropbox using high CPU, don’t worry! Follow the solutions below to fix this problem on Windows and Mac easily.


by Jonna Lasted Updated March 31, 2023

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How Do I Stop Dropbox Using High CPU?


Every time I boot and log in to the Dropbox program, it would use 40% - 60% of CPU on my computer, even when there are no files to be synced. Why is Dropbox using high CPU? Any ideas or suggestions? How can I make Dropbox use less CPU?

Dropbox Using High CPU

CPU, short for central processing unit, is arguably the most important component of a computer. CPU usage can be an indicator of how much stress the current central processor is currently undergoing. If Dropbox takes up most or all of your CPU usage or memory, not only will Dropbox be unable to work, but your computer's performance will also slow down, affecting the operation of other programs.

Why Is Dropbox Using so Much CPU?

When you sync files with the Dropbox program, several processes will be used to index, store, and update files, which may take up CPU on your computer. Typically, the more files you sync, the more CPU/memory Dropbox may use during synchronization. Besides, files you save in the Dropbox folder on your computer will occupy local space, causing Dropbox heavy CPU usage on the computer.

If the syncing files are opened by another application or cannot be uploaded to Dropbox correctly due to permission issues, it can lead to excessive load on Dropbox. Also, since Dropbox does not work with network share file systems, installing the Dropbox folder on a NAS device will cause Dropbox using too much CPU as well.

How to Fix Dropbox Using High CPU in 4 Ways

When you're not running many applications, your CPU usage should be low, and ideally, everything should be running smoothly. If Dropbox uses high CPU when indexing or syncing files, you can try the methods below to fix Dropbox high CPU usage on Windows 10 and Mac. In the following, we will take steps on Windows computers as an example to show you detailed guides.

Method 1. Restart Dropbox

Restarting the Dropbox program can be an effective and easy step to solve most issues about Dropbox, such as Dropbox high disk usage, Dropbox using too much memory, high CPU usage on Dropbox, and so on. In this process, background processes that are interfered with file syncing on Dropbox can be shut down.

1. Locate Dropbox on Task Manager. Tap on it to click End task.

Task Manager

2. Then, restart Dropbox using the desktop icon or menu item. The Dropbox CPU usage on Windows 10 or Mac problem may be alleviated.

Method 2. Uninstall and Reinstall Dropbox

If you are not running the latest version of Dropbox, or there are problems with the Dropbox client, it may also cause Dropbox high CPU usage on Mac and Windows. You could try to uninstall Dropbox and reinstall the latest Dropbox to fix Dropbox kills the CPU usage.

1. Open Settings from the Start menu and select Apps.

2. Go to Dropbox on the Apps & features list and click on Uninstall > Uninstall.

Uninstall Dropbox

3. Then, install the latest Dropbox version on your computer and check if high CPU usage on Dropbox is solved.

Method 3. Make Sure Files Are not in Use While Syncing

If files are being used by a third-party program when you add files to Dropbox, this will cause Dropbox to conflict with this program and eventually lead to excessive CPU usage. Your security software may also conflict with Dropbox and cause the same situations to occur.

Fortunately, you can resolve this issue by ensuring that files are not in use and are synced properly without permission issues, etc. Also, you could isolate third-party applications that make Dropbox consume a lot of CPU and memory resources from Task Manager.

Method 4. Use Selective Sync to Free up Space on Computer

When there are more than 300,000 files in the Dropbox folder, the Dropbox app’s performance starts dropping. And when you sync a lot of files or large files from computer to cloud, Dropbox may eat up many CPU. Here you could rely on the Dropbox selective sync to decrease files in the Dropbox folder and release the Dropbox using high CPU problem.

1. Click the Dropbox cloud icon on the notification area.

2. Tap the avatar or the initials of your name in the upper right corner and choose Preferences.

3. On the Sync tab, hit Select folder under Selective sync.

Selective Sync Select Folders

4. Untick the folders that don’t need to sync to your computer and tap Update. Then, only the selected folders will be synced locally.

Update Dropbox Selective Sync

How to Sync Large Files to Dropbox without Using High CPU

Sometimes, abnormally high CPU usage on Dropbox is unavoidable as more and more files are synchronized, and it may only be alleviated by restarting Dropbox over and over again. If you want to solve this problem for good, a free and professional cloud backup service CBackup can help you.

CBackup Main Page

This tool is capable of syncing files to Dropbox from your computer hard drives and external hard disks without using high CPU. Also, you are allowed to upload to OneDrive, Google Drive, and more public clouds on one interface. Its Scheduled Sync feature can help you upload files to clouds on a daily, weekly, or monthly frequency flexibly.

Please install the CBackup freeware on your Windows computer and follow the guide below to sync multiple and large files to Dropbox without using high CPU!

Download CBackupWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

1. Apply for a CBackup account first if you don’t have one. Then, sign in to the CBackup desktop app.

2. To upload files to Dropbox, click Storage > Dropbox > Authorize Now subsequently to grant CBackup access to your Dropbox cloud.

Select Dropbox

3. Head to the Sync tab and click on Sync PC to Public Cloud to create a new sync task.

Choose PC to Public Cloud

4. Rename the task for easy distinction. Select files or folders you’d like to sync to Dropbox and choose a folder on Dropbox as your destination location. Then, hit Start Sync to upload files to Dropbox easily and quickly.

Start Sync to Dropbox

If you want to perform file auto sync to Dropbox, you could click Settings and set a scheduled sync interval as needed.
CBackup offers a Cloud to Cloud Sync feature that can help you transfer files between Dropbox accounts as well as migrate Dropbox to Google Drive, OneDrive, and other clouds hassle-free.
CBackup Cloud, giving 10GB of free backup space, is offered for you to backup local files and restore when original files are lost or corrupted.
When your Dropbox storage is used up, you could resort to CBackup to combine multiple Dropbox accounts or merge Dropbox and OneDrive/Google Drive to increase cloud storage for free.


If you are experiencing Dropbox using high CPU on Mac or Windows computers, you can find some effective solutions here to fix it. If you want to avoid such a problem or other Dropbox syncing issues, the free backup and sync software CBackup offers you an easy and error-free method to upload to Dropbox.

Jonna · Editor
Jonna becomes a professional in the areas of cloud backup and restoration, data protection, etc. after years of learning and researching. She maintains a keen eye for the latest technology trends, ensuring that the information provided is always in step with industry developments.

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