Smart Sync Break free from your hard drive

Forget you ever worried about storage space with Dropbox Smart Sync. See and access every file in your account and every folder that’s been shared with you, right from your desktop, without taking up all your hard drive space.

Smart Sync offers customers a better way to access all their work. It enables users to access to all the content they have access to in Dropbox — every file of theirs, and every folder shared with them — right on their desktop, with just a click. Files and folders take up practically no space until they’re needed, so it doesn’t matter if users have more in the cloud than they can fit on their local hard drive. Everything you need, right where you need it, exactly when you need it.

Work without space limits

You create lots of great work, especially when you collaborate with clients and your team. And as projects add up, your hard drive space eventually runs out. But with Smart Sync, space is no longer an issue.

A screen capture showing how hard drives have a limited amount of storage space.

All your work, at your fingertips

See all your files and folders as you normally would on your desktop—whether they’re in the cloud or synced locally to your device. No need to track down files on different drives, everything’s right there.

A screen capture that shows all your files and folders stored on Dropbox

Easy to access

Folders, even entire projects, are just a click away. Open a file and it automatically syncs to your hard drive—it’s that simple. 

A screen capture that shows pulling a file that is stored as "online-only" in the cloud and working on it from your desktop locally.

Make space to work

Freeing up space is just as easy. Send files and folders to the cloud, and they’re still visible on your desktop, even though they’re off your hard drive. 

A screen capture that demonstrates how you can free up space on your hard drive. Simply right-click on a local file and make "online-only" to send to the cloud.

Works on multiple platforms

Smart Sync works seamlessly on Windows and Mac, even if you're not on the latest version. It's already part of your Dropbox—ready to work whenever you are.

An image of Apple and Microsoft logos to demonstrate that Smart Sync works on both operating systems
Maine Pointe Consulting company logo

If you’re using a file collaboration tool without a feature like Smart Sync, you’re always going to hit a wall and, as a highly mobile consulting firm, we had hit a couple. Across all levels, Smart Sync has addressed pain points for us and seriously changes the game when it comes to simplifying collaboration.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does Smart Sync save space on my hard drive?

Normally, synced files are fully downloaded to your computer and they take up hard drive space. With Smart Sync, you can make files and folders online-only. Online-only files use just a small amount of hard drive space to store information like the file name, size, and thumbnail, but the full contents of the files are stored securely in the Dropbox cloud. You’ll always see your online-only files on your computer, so when you need them, you can open them with just a click.

Can I make online-only files available when I’m offline?

Yes, it’s easy to make your files available even for when you’re offline! Simply right-click on the file and choose Local from the Smart Sync menu. The full contents of the file will be synced to your computer’s hard drive so you can work offline.

How is Smart Sync different than selective sync?

Both Smart Sync and selective sync can help you save space. Selective Sync is an older feature that allows you to choose files and folders to sync with Dropbox. Synced files take up hard drive space, and everything you don’t sync can’t be seen or opened on your computer. With Smart Sync, you can choose to make files online-only. Online-only files take up practically no space on your hard drive, but you can still see them, rename them, move them, and preview them right from your computer — just like regular files. And when you need them, just open, and they’ll sync automatically.

What are the system requirements for Smart Sync?

Smart Sync works on Windows and Mac OS. Learn more about our system requirements