Save folders for offline viewing on a mobile device

The feature discussed in this article is available to Dropbox Plus, Professional, Business, and Enterprise customers.

Select your operating system for instructions:

Android

To view a folder anywhere and anytime, make it available offline. Making a folder available offline:

  • Adds the folder to your Offline view for easy access.
  • Saves the folder to your Android device for offline viewing within Dropbox.
  • Attempts to keep the folder as up-to-date as possible and gives you the option to update the folder manually.
  • Ensures that any changes you make to the folder while offline are synced to your Dropbox account once you’re online.

Make folders available for offline viewing from the Android app

  1. Browse to the folder you'd like to make available for offline viewing.
  2. From the folder list, tap the downward arrow to the right of the folder name.
  3. Toggle the switch to make the folder Available offline.

Once a folder is available offline and is downloaded to your phone or tablet, you can access it any time. To access the file, tap Offline from the main menu.

You can manage your Offline settings in the Settings page of the app.

  1. Tap the menu button on the top left.
  2. Tap the gear icon.
  3. Scroll down to the Offline section.

When on a cellular network (not WiFi), Dropbox tries not to use your data plan. If you're not on WiFi, and changes were made to your folders, you will see a yellow "!" and you have the option to tap and update them manually. 

To remove a folder from your Offline screen:

  1. Go to the folder and tap the downward arrow to the right of the folders name.
  2. Toggle the button next to Available offline to turn off the feature.

Dropbox Business users

If you have your personal and business accounts connected, you can access all your offline folders from the same tab. From the Offline, you can view all your offline folders together or you can separate them by account.

iOS

To view a folder anywhere and anytime, make it available offline. Specifically, making a folder available offline:

  • Adds the folder to your Offline view for easy access.
  • Saves the folder to your iPhone for offline viewing within Dropbox.
  • Attempts to keep the folder as up-to-date as possible and gives you the option to update the folder manually.
  • Ensures that any changes you make to the folder while offline are synced to your Dropbox account once you’re online.

Make a folder available offline

  1. Find the folder you'd like to save offline in the folder list view.
  2. Tap the ... (ellipsis) icon next to the folder name.
  3. Tap Make Available Offline.

You can manage your Offline settings in the Settings page of the app. Here’s how:

  1. Tap the person icon.
  2. Tap the gear icon.
  3. Scroll down to the Offline section.

The Offline tab shows you the amount of space your offline files and folders use. To keep your files up-to-date, Dropbox updates your offline files automatically if you're on a WiFi network. If you're not on WiFi, and changes were made to your folders, you will see a yellow "!" and you have the option to tap and update them manually.

Dropbox Business users

If you have your personal and business accounts connected, you can access all your offline folders from the same tab. From the Offline, you can view all your offline folders together or you can separate them by account.

If you're the team admin of a Dropbox Business team, you can control how team members can share with people outside the team.

How to manage team sharing settings

  1. Sign in to dropbox.com with your admin credentials.
  2. Click Admin Console.
  3. Click Settings.

Dropbox sharing settings explained

After you navigate to sharing settings following the steps above, you have the option to change these settings:

Sharing files and folders externally

Choose whether team members can share files and folders with people outside the team. If you choose On, members can decide whether a shared file or folder is Team only when they create it. Changing this settings does not apply retroactively.

Editing external folders

If this setting is turned On, team members can edit shared folders that belong to people outside the team.

If this setting is turned Off, team members can still join folders that belong to people outside the team as view-only.

Note: Changing this setting does not apply retroactively.

Sharing links externally

If this setting is turned Off, team members cannot share links with people who aren’t on the team. In addition, existing links created by people in your team will no longer work for people outside the team.

If this setting is turned On, team members do have the ability to share links with people who aren’t on the team. Team members can override the Default shared link privacy setting described below.

Default shared link privacy

This setting controls the default behavior of shared links. As an admin, you can choose whether people outside your team or just your team can view shared links by default. 

  • If you choose Anyone, everyone with the shared link can view files by default, including people not signed into a Dropbox account.
  • If you choose Team only, only people on your team with the shared link can view files by default. People not signed into Dropbox cannot view the files.

File requests

In addition to the settings above, you can also manage how file requests work on your team.

  1. Sign in to dropbox.com with your admin credentials.
  2. Click Admin Console.
  3. Click Settings.
  4. Under the Additional settings section, click File requests.
    • If you choose On, your team members can create file requests. File requests are On for new Dropbox Business teams by default.
    • If you choose Off, no one on the team will be able to create a file request, and any pre-existing file requests will be deactivated.

How often do my offline folders update?

Dropbox checks if any changes were made to your offline folders when you open the Offline tab. If changes were made, Dropbox syncs these changes to your device when your device is connected to WiFi. When your device is not connected to WiFi, changes are indicated by a yellow "!", and you can tap to update them manually. If you'd like folders to update using data (when you're not connected to WiFi), go to your settings and toggle Use Cellular Data to on.

Do offline folders update while the app is in the background?

Automatic syncing while the app is in the background is not currently supported. The only exception is when Android devices are connected to power, offline files sync in the background.

Is there a limit on the number or size of folders I can make available offline?

You can make up to 100 folders available offline.

A folder can't be saved for offline use if:

  • The folder contains more than 10,000 files
  • The folder contains more than 100 GB
  • The folder contains a file that is more than 10 GB

Why am I seeing a red "x" next to the folder that I made available offline?

There can be a few different explanations for a red "x" on the folder icon, including:

  • Your device has less than 500 MB available
  • The folder contains more than 10,000 files
  • The folder contains more than 100 GB
  • The folder contains a file that is more than 10 GB

Why am I seeing a yellow “!” next to the folder that I made available offline?

A yellow exclamation point means that a newer version of your folder is available. Tapping the refresh icon on iOS or Update all button on Android syncs these changes.

Do offline folders use my cellular data?

When the Dropbox app is open, any changes automatically sync to your phone. If these changes are greater than 20 MB, you can decide whether you’d like to wait for WiFi or sync the changes anyway. If you'd like folders to update using data (when you're not connected to WiFi), go to your settings and toggle Use Cellular Data to on.

Do offline folders use up my device storage space?

Yes. Folders that are marked to be available offline are stored locally on your device. If you have less than 500 MB of storage available, syncing automatically stops.

Can I store offline folders on an SD card from my Android device?

No, this feature is not currently supported.

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