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Dropbox Files Not Syncing on Windows Desktop


I use the Dropbox application on Windows, but some folders/files are not syncing. I do not see them on my desktop, even though I can access them online. 

All my Dropbox folders on my desktop show the green tick mark. Right-clicking on the Dropbox icon on the lower right hand corner of the task bar displays up to date. When checking the selective sync option, all the missing folders show up and are shown to be checked as well. However, these folders/files are still missing on my Desktop.


Option 1

Check for length of file path: Windows limits the entire file path from C: to the file's name to be 260 characters or fewer. Windows will not recognize files with names longer than this limit.

Option 2

Check for illegal characters: if a file syncs successfully on a Mac but not on a Windows computer, it is likely that the file name contains characters reserved by the Windows file system. The following characters are illegal:

Ampersand ( & ) Asterisk ( * ) Angle brackets (< >)
Backslash ( \ ) Braces ( {} ) Colon ( : )
Forward slash ( / ) Number sign ( # ) Percent ( % )
Pipe ( | ) Plus sign ( + ) Question mark ( ? )
Quotation mark ( " ) Tile ( ~ ) Period ( . )

Option 3

Use Dropbox's bad files check tool to check for incompatible files and folders on Dropbox

See also

IS&T Contributions

Documentation and information provided by IS&T staff members

Last Modified:

May 13, 2017

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