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MIT’s Dropbox for Business account includes the “Groups” feature that allows you to define a group of users that you and other Dropbox users can use to share folders and files. The Groups feature simplifies the sharing of files with a team or group of collaborators.
For example, let’s say you have a project folder you need to share with a group of Dropbox users. One way to share the folder would be to right-click on the folder, select “Share this folder,” and enter each member individually. However, what happens when group members leave or new members get added? You would have to go back to the shared folder and add or remove them. With the Groups feature, you first create a group, add members, and then share folders and files with that Group. Members can be added or removed from the group so that all shared folders are shared with those who need them.
First, you should decide who will be the “Owner” of the Group. Whoever creates the Group is the Group Owner, but that initial Group Owner can transfer ownership to another Group member later if necessary. Only Group Owners can add and remove other members. Members of the group can remove themselves from the group but cannot add or remove others.
Second, you should think of a name for your Group. If you already maintain a Moira group, it makes sense to replicate that name for your Dropbox Group and to maintain both the membership of the Moira group and the Dropbox group to match each other.
Finally, you should make sure that all of the individuals you need to add to the Group have registered an MIT Dropbox account. Since Groups is a Dropbox for Business feature, you cannot add members who only have personal accounts or do not yet have a Dropbox account.
To create a Group, you need to be logged into your MIT Dropbox account at dropbox.com. Then, complete these steps:
- Click on the Sharing link on the left.
- Click the Groups tab.
- Click the button labeled “Get started.” (If you already own or are a member of a Group, the button will be labeled “Create Group.”)
- In the pop-up window, type in the group name and click the button labeled "Create group."
Once the group is created, you can add members. Click the button labeled “Add members” and type the name of the individuals you want to add. You can add more than one member at the same time by typing in more than one name.
Owners can transfer ownership to another group member by clicking on the gear icon to the right of the user’s name and select the option labeled “Make owner.” In addition, owners can remove members by selecting the option “Remove user.”
If you no longer need a group, you can delete it by clicking the options button found beside the button labeled “Add members” and selecting “Delete group.” Note that only an Owner can delete a group.
The process for sharing files and folders with a Group is just like sharing them with an individual. If you are working from the Dropbox client on your computer, right-click on the folder you want to share, and in the “Name or email” field, type the name of the Group and click Invite.
From the browser-based version at dropbox.com, navigate to the file or folder you want to share and hover to the right until the share button appears. Click it and select “Invite people to collaborate…” Type in the name of the group and click the button labeled “Share folder.”