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What is the Dropbox cache folder?

The Dropbox cache is a hidden folder named ".dropbox.cache" that is stored in your root Dropbox folder.

You will not see this folder unless the ability to view hidden files and folders is enabled in your operating system.

If you deleted a large number of files from your Dropbox, but your computer’s hard drive does not reflect these deletions, the files you deleted may be held in the cache folder. Dropbox keeps a cache of files for efficiency and emergency purposes. It is also used as a staging area for downloading and uploading files.

How do I clear the Dropbox cache folder?

Your cache folder is automatically cleared every three days. If you need to delete sensitive files immediately, or you need to clear up some space on your hard drive, you can manually clear the cache with the below steps.

Clear your cache on Windows XP

  1. Open a new Windows Explorer window by clicking on the Start menu and then My Computer.
  2. Type or copy and paste the following code into the location bar at the top of the window and press return: %HOMEPATH%\Dropbox\.dropbox.cache
  3. This will take you directly to the Dropbox cache folder in your Application Data folder:
  4. Cache folder
  5. Delete the files in your cache by dragging them out of the Dropbox cache folder and into your Windows Recycle bin.

Dropbox Business or team users: If you have two accounts linked to the same desktop, the name of your Dropbox folder will be appended with your team name in parentheses or "(Personal)," depending on the type of account. Here’s how it would look to clear your cache on a Dropbox Business account called "Pepo Inc":

business account

Clear your cache on a Mac

  1. Open the Finder and select Go to folder... from the Go menu (or press Shift-Command-G).
  2. A dialog box should appear. Now copy and paste the following line into the box and press the return key: ~/Dropbox/.dropbox.cache
  3. This will take you directly to the Dropbox cache folder:
  4. Go to foler
  5. Delete the files in your cache by dragging them out of the Dropbox cache folder and into your Trash.

Dropbox Business or team users: If you have two accounts linked to the same desktop, the name of your Dropbox folder will be appended with your team name in parentheses or "(Personal)," depending on the type of account. Here’s how it would look to clear your cache on a Dropbox Business account called "Pepo Inc":

business account

Clear your cache on Linux

  1. Open a new Terminal window.
  2. Once there, enter the following command to remove the files in the Dropbox cache directory: rm -R ~/Dropbox/.dropbox.cache/*

Clear your cache on Windows

  1. Open a new Windows Explorer window by clicking on the Start menu and then My Computer.
  2. Type or copy and paste the following code into the location bar at the top of the window and press return: %HOMEPATH%\Dropbox\.dropbox.cache
  3. This will take you directly to the Dropbox cache folder in your Application Data folder.
  4. Go to folder
  5. Delete the files in your cache by dragging them out of the Dropbox cache folder and into your Windows Recycle bin.

Dropbox Business or team users: If you have two accounts linked to the same desktop, the name of your Dropbox folder will be appended with your team name in parentheses or "(Personal)," depending on the type of account. Here’s how it would look to clear your cache on a Dropbox Business account called "Pepo Inc":

business account