Smart Sync

Dropbox Smart Sync allows team members to easily free up hard drive space on their computers by moving files and folders to the cloud (online-only).

Files and folders stored with Smart Sync will appear in the team member’s Dropbox folder on their computer, in the Dropbox mobile app, and on for easy file management. To access a file that is stored with Smart Sync, team members can just double-click it and Dropbox quickly downloads and opens it on their computer. 

Smart Sync can also help save space automatically, by identifying infrequently used files and folders and moving them to the cloud.

As an admin, you can choose whether new files automatically download to your team’s computers, or if they start as online-only. With Smart Sync, you can spend less time managing your team’s storage space and more time doing work that matters.

How to: Smart Sync

How to use Smart Sync to manage content on your computer

  1. 1. Click the Dropbox icon from the system tray (Windows) or menu bar (Mac).

    2. Click the folder icon.

    3. Locate the content that you want to make online-only or local.

    4. Control-click or right-click the item.

    5. Choose Smart Sync.

    6. Choose Online-only or Local.

Learn how to choose a default setting for new content with Smart Sync.

How do the system extension and driver work?

How to use Smart Sync to sync online-only content to a computer

You can open a file as usual through its native application, Windows Explorer, or Finder (Mac). The file is instantly downloaded to your computer, and will continue to be synced to your Dropbox account (and use space on your hard drive).

How to set the Smart Sync default for your team

1.  Sign in to with your admin account

2. Click Admin Console.

3. Click Settings.

4. Click Smart Sync.

5. Select a default for Smart Sync:

  • Synced locally
  • Online-only

Note: You don’t need to set a default for team members to use Smart Sync. While the admin setting is the initial default, team members can change their device settings to a different default.