How to Automatically Backup Files from Local Computer to Dropbox

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How to Automatically Backup Files from Local Computer to Dropbox

It’s a common thing to see Dropbox used as a backup medium. To backup files from your local computer to Dropbox, you don’t need to upload them manually. Wouldn’t it be so much hassle to upload your files to Dropbox every time you made changes of them?

Dropbox provides a desktop client to allow you syncing selected folders on your computer to Dropbox. You can take advantage of this handy tool to automatically backup your files to Dropbox. No more manual upload. And Dropbox is fair enough. It provides the desktop client for all platforms with no exception, including Linux.

This article will show you the steps to automatically backup local files to Dropbox by utilizing Dropbox desktop client. In this example, I use Ubuntu. But don’t worry, the methods is the same on other platforms.

Automatically backup files to Dropbox

First off, prepare a special folder on Dropbox to backup your files. I suggest you to do this to make your Dropbox be more organized, although you can actually use any existing folder. For an example in this article, I have created a new folder named “backup”.

The next step, download the Dropbox client and install on your computer. If you use Ubuntu, we already have an article covering how to install Dropbox client on Ubuntu. You can visit this page to read it. To download Dropbox client, simply visit this page.

Once Dropbox client is installed, sign in with your account.

Once you clicked the Sign in option on the Dropbox client, a new page will open on your browser, asking you to connect your computer with Dropbox. Simply click the Connect button.

Dropbox will create a new folder named “Dropbox” under the home directory on your computer. If you want it, you can also select a custom path. Notice at the Dropbox folder on your computer. If you see a green checklist symbol, it means that this folder already linked to Dropbox.

By default, Dropbox will sync all of the folders on your Dropbox account. To save your bandwidth, it’s highly recommended to sync only selected folders. In this example, I am going to sync only a single folder named “backup”. Click the Dropbox icon tray and select Preferences.

On the Sync tab, click the Selective Sync button and select the Dropbox folders you want to sync to your computer. Don’t forget to click the Apply button.

Wait until Dropbox is done syncing your selected folders. Once the syncing process is done, you should see your selected folders inside the Dropbox folder on your computer. Please note that the syncing process can take minutes.

By now, every time you need to backup your files on your computer to Dropbox, simply copy them to one of the Dropbox folders on your computer, in my case is “backup”. To ensure Dropbox runs every time you turn on your computer on, return to the Preferences menu and check theĀ Start Dropbox on the system startup option on the General tab.

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