Cloud

How to give Dropbox on Android a boost with Dropsync

If you use Dropbox on an Android device, the Dropsync app is a must-have, says Jack Wallen. Learn how to use Dropsync.

dropsynchero.jpg
Image: Jack Wallen

Dropbox is the go-to cloud storage service for many users. With Dropbox, you can keep your files in sync on all of your devices.

However, on the mobile front, Dropbox is a bit limiting. Yes, you can sync your files to your Dropbox account, mark photos for offline usage, and get notifications, but that's about the extent of it.

So what do you do when you need more from your Dropbox cloud sync service? You turn to an app called Dropsync. This handy app adds these features to Dropbox for Android:

  • Full two-way autosync
  • Multiple sync modes (two-way, upload-only, upload then delete, download only, and more)
  • Instant upload
  • Very low battery consumption
  • Easy setup
  • Configurable autosync interval
  • Tasker support

The above features are part of the free version of the app. You can upgrade to Dropsync Pro edition ($5.99 USD) and add the follow features:

  • Sync multiple pairs of folders
  • Upload files larger than 10 MB
  • Smart change detection
  • Sync your entire cloud account with a folder in your device
  • App settings can be protected with passcode
  • No ads
  • Email support

Let's get Dropsync installed, and see how easy it is to get more out of Dropbox. (We'll install the free version of Dropsync.)

SEE: Dropbox adds more security, collaboration controls to woo the enterprise (ZDNet)

Installing Dropsync

I assume you already have Dropbox installed on Android and connected to your Dropbox account. If not, take care of that before following these steps to install Dropsync.

  1. Open the Google Play Store on your Android device.
  2. Search for dropsync.
  3. Locate and tap the entry for Autosync Dropbox - Dropsync, by MetaCtrl.
  4. Tap Install.
  5. Read the permissions listing (if applicable).
  6. Tap Install and allow the installation to complete.

Once the app is installed, you'll find the launcher on the home screen and/or the App Drawer. Tap the launcher to fire up the app, and you're ready to go.

Connecting to Dropbox

With the app open, you'll be greeted by a rather obvious button (Figure A). Tap Connect To Dropbox and then, when prompted, select the Dropbox account you wish to connect to Dropsync.

Figure A

Figure A

Connecting Dropsync to Dropbox.

Image: Jack Wallen

After connecting Dropsync to Dropbox, you have to decide what you want to sync. Tap the Choose What To Sync button and then select from:

  • Create Test Folder Pair
  • Let Me Create My Own Folder Pair
  • Skip, Don't Sync Anything Yet

If you already know what you want to sync, click Let Me Create My Own Folder Pair. In the next window (Figure B), tap Local Folder In Device and then locate the folder to be synced.

Figure B

Figure B

Setting up a folder pair for syncing on a Verizon-branded Nexus 6.

Image: Jack Wallen

Next, tap Remote Folder In Dropbox and select the folder to be used on the Dropbox side of the folder pair. If the Dropbox folder doesn't already exist, you can tap the + button in the upper right hand corner, give the folder a name, and tap CREATE. Tap the newly created folder and then tap SELECT.

With your folder pair created, tap the Sync method drop-down and select the choice that best fits your needs from the list of options and then tap the slider to enable the sync.

Tap SAVE, and Dropsync will start syncing your folder pair. You will be taken to the Dropsync main window, which now offers up four tabs:

  • STATUS: See everything that is currently happening with Dropsync.
  • SYNC HISTORY: Get a complete listing of everything that has synced with your Dropbox account through Dropsync.
  • SYNCED FOLDERS: Enable/disable your folder pair (if you upgrade to the Pro version, you can add more folder pairs here).
  • UPGRADE: See all the upgrade options (Remove ads for $1.99, Dropsync Pro $5.99, Dropsync Ultimate* $9.99). * Dropsync Ultimate gets you access to anything added in the future for free.

More options

If you tap the Menu button (three vertical dots in the upper right corner of the main window) and tap Settings, you will see the real power driving Dropsync. From the Settings window (Figure C), you can enable write access to your device's SD card (if available), set up exclude patterns, set file size limits (for both upload and download), set the autosync interval/retry delay, and much more. I highly recommend you go through these settings carefully and tune Dropsync to perfectly fit your needs.

Figure C

Figure C

The Dropsync settings window.

Image: Jack Wallen

A must-have for Android Dropbox users

Dropbox is limited in what it can do on Android. With the additional power of Dropsync, you immediately expand the cloud service so that it can do exactly what you need.

If you use Dropbox on your Android device(s), Dropsync should be considered a must-have.

Also see

About Jack Wallen

Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website jackwallen.com.

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