Package files and Dropbox

Updated Nov 28, 2023

Package files and flattened package files are file formats used in Apple computers (macOS). They're used most often by applications like Keynote (.key), Pages (.pages), GarageBand (.band) and others. While package files and flattened package files appear to be single files when viewed on an Apple computer, they actually contain many other files and are represented as folders on non-Apple computers and most web browsers.

How to upload package files to Dropbox

There are several ways to upload package files to Dropbox while ensuring compatibility on all your computers, devices, and browsers.

You can upload package files on by doing one of the following: 

  • Drag-and-drop the package file to (if your browser supports it)
  • Zip the file, then upload it using the Upload button

To upload package files to the Dropbox desktop app, move or copy the file into the Dropbox folder on your computer. The Dropbox desktop application will then sync the file in the correct format. 

How to zip a file for uploading

If you are on a Mac computer, you may need to zip a package file to upload it to Dropbox. To do this:

  1. Open Finder.
  2. Right-click the file, then click Compress…

Package files on macOS 12.5 and later

The updated Dropbox for macOS experience introduced changes in how package files behave on macOS 12.5 and later. You can expect the following:

  • Flattened package files can only be accessed on devices running Dropbox for macOS. They won’t be displayed on non-Mac devices or Mac devices not updated to macOS 12.5 or later.
  • Flattened package files have the same functionality as previous package files.
  • Once you’re on the updated Dropbox for macOS experience, existing package files will be updated to flattened package files the next time they are changed and synced.
  • When viewed on, these flattened package files will appear as files and not as directories.
  • Packages downloaded from can be extracted as .tar archives.
  • Dropbox Transfer doesn’t currently support flattened package files.
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