FAQs about Dropbox shared folders

Updated Apr 17, 2024
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The information in this article applies to all Dropbox users unless otherwise specified.

What are parent folders and subfolders?

  • Parent folder: A folder that contains other folders. 
  • Subfolder: A folder within another folder.

What's the difference between a shared folder and a team folder?

Team folder:  Members of Dropbox team accounts can use team folders to share content with their team. Users on Dropbox Basic, Plus, Professional, and Essentials can’t create team folders.

Learn more about sharing content within a Dropbox team.

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Note: Team admins can manage permissions to create new team folders. By default, everyone can create team folders on Business and Business Plus teams.

Shared folder: All users, including Dropbox Basic, Plus, Professional, and Essentials accounts, can share folders with an individual or group of people. You can make any folder a shared folder by sharing it. Learn how to share a folder.

How does ownership of shared folders work?

If you’re the owner of a shared folder, you automatically own all subfolders contained within it. Even if someone else creates a new subfolder under your parent folder, you’ll automatically own the newly-created subfolder.

If you change the owner of the parent shared folder, the new owner will own the parent shared folder as well as all of its subfolders.

How do I transfer ownership of a shared folder?

Ownership of shared folders must be changed at the parent folder level. Learn how to transfer ownership of a shared folder.

Who has access to my shared content?

Learn how to find who has access to a shared folder and what type of access they have.

Can I move a shared folder into another shared folder?

To move a shared folder into another shared folder, you must own the file or folder you’re moving and have edit access to the destination folder.

Learn how to move shared folders.

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Note: You can only move a shared folder into another shared folder on dropbox.com and the Dropbox mobile app.

To move a shared folder into another shared folder:

  1. Log in to dropbox.com
  2. Navigate to the shared folder you’d like to move.
  3. Hover over the shared folder and click the “…” (ellipsis).
  4. Click Move.
  5. Select the folder you’d like to move the folder to.
  6. Click Move.
  1. Open the Dropbox mobile app.
  2. Navigate to the shared folder you wish to move.
  3. Tap the “” (vertical ellipsis on Android) or “” (ellipsis on iPhone/iPad).
  4. Tap Move
    • You might have to scroll down to see this on iOS.
  5. Tap the folder you wish to move it to.
  6. Tap Move.

Can I unshare a shared folder?

You can unshare a folder as long as:

  • The folder doesn’t have any shared folders inside of it.
  • The folder isn’t inside another shared folder.
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Why can’t I create a shared folder?

If you’re unable to create a shared folder, it could be due to one of the following:

  • You’ve reached the limit of shared folders you can create.
  • You haven’t verified your email address.
  • Your admin has turned off sharing outside the team.
  • Your admin doesn’t allow team members to create and share folders at the top level of the team space.
  • Your sharing activity has been suspended.
  • Your app folders are incompatible with shared folders or team folders. When you connect a third-party app to your Dropbox account, it creates a dedicated app folder. These app folders are named after the app and have a puzzle piece on them. You’ll get an error message if you try to:
    • Share an app folder.
    • Add an app folder to a shared folder. 
    • Add a shared folder to an app folder.

Is there a limit to the number of shared folders I can create?

Within a single parent folder, you can create up to 1,500 shared subfolders. This number includes the parent folder itself.

Within your Dropbox account, you can create up to 30,000 shared folders. This number includes parent folders and subfolders.

For large teams, you may want to break off into sub-teams with separate team folders. You can then use groups to give people access to multiple team folders.

What can I do if I’ve reached the maximum number of shared subfolders?

If you’ve reached the limit for shared folders you can create in one folder, you can:

  • Permanently delete some shared folders inside of it.
  • Move some shared subfolders to a new parent folder.

Learn more about moving Dropbox files and folders.

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