How to use the Selective Sync feature in Dropbox

by Ross McKillop on January 4, 2011

Windows

This brief tutorial will show you how to use Dropbox’s long awaited “selective sync” feature – which allows you to specify the files you want to sync on a device by device basis. This guide will explain the steps for the Windows Dropbox client.

  1. Make sure you have downloaded and installed latest version of Dropbox.
  2. Click the Dropbox icon in your System tray. Select Preferences… from the pop-up menu.
  3. Select the Advanced tab, and then click the Selective Sync… button.
  4. From here you can remove the check mark next to each folder that you don’t want to sync on this Windows PC. In the example below I removed the apps and ebooks folders – which means they will be deleted from this Windows PC, and will not sync with Dropbox in the future.
  5. If you want to refine your syncing even more, click the Switch to Advanced view button.
  6. From here you can stop syncing specific sub-folders, without having to disable sync for the entire folder. When you’re ready to make the changes, click the Update button.

  7. click to enlarge

  8. Dropbox will ‘warn’ you about the change, and then remove the files and folders you deselected. Going forward, Dropbox will not sync anything you put in those folders on your other devices.

  9. click to enlarge

  10. That’s it! If you ever want to re-enable syncing of folders you previously opted not to sync, just repeat this process but add the check-mark back.