Settings on

You can adjust the settings to control how your Dropbox account works overall by visiting the Dropbox website.

If you have the special Dropbox program installed on your computer, you can change its settings, too!  See our Dropbox Settings for Windows tutorial for a list of what you can tinker with.

General Dropbox Settings

You can access your general Dropbox settings by going to and logging in, clicking on your name in the top-right corner, and clicking Settings.

There are three categories of settings that you can change here; click on the respective tab to see the settings in that category.


This tab allows you to change general settings concerning how Dropbox and other people who use it interact with you.

Name — How your name displays on Dropbox; you can change it, if you wish.

Account Type — Shows the current pricing plan that you're using, and allows you to change it.  See our Dropbox Pricing article for more information.

Account Photo — A picture of you that pairs with your name on Dropbox.  You can use an image file that you've stored on Dropbox as your profile picture, and change it as you like.

Personal Email — The email address that your Dropbox account is linked with, and sends messages to.  You can change it, if you wish.

Language — The language that Dropbox displays in; you can change it, if you wish.

Email Notifications: Personal — This allows you to choose when Dropbox will send you emails.  Click the check boxes beside each option to mark or unmark them.

  • "My Dropbox Is Almost out Of Space" — notifies you when you have used up most of your memory storage capacity on Dropbox; you might want to delete some files on Dropbox, or at least move them off Dropbox.

  • "A New Device Is Linked to Dropbox" — notifies you when a new computer or mobile device installs the Dropbox access program and uses it to link to your account on Dropbox.  Usually, you'll be the one doing this, but if you aren't, it might be good to know about it so that you can let Dropbox know that there's a problem with your account.

  • "A New App Is Connected to Dropbox" — notifies you when a third-party service, such as Facebook or Twitter, links to your account on Dropbox in order to enable some features.  Again, you'll usually be the one doing this, but it might not hurt to keep this on in case an application connects without your knowledge or permission.  Then, you can contact Dropbox and let them know that something's wrong with your account.

  • "Dropbox Newsletter" — notifies you of any important updates to Dropbox.

  • "Dropbox Tips" — gives you hints on how to get the most out of Dropbox.

Date Format / Dropbox Settings — These are generally aesthetic or trivial settings that you generally won't be using too much.  Don't worry about them.


In addition to showing you how much memory storage space your Dropbox account is using, this tab lets you do a few other things.

Upgrade Your Account — Allows you to upgrade your account to Dropbox Pro or Dropbox for Business.  See our Dropbox Pricing article for more information on the benefits of upgrading.

Earn More Space — If you have a Dropbox Basic or Dropbox Pro account, you can refer friends to Dropbox in order to increase your account's memory storage capacity.

Connected Services — This allows you to connect your Dropbox account to your accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, or Yahoo Mail.  This makes it easier for Dropbox to find people with whom you can share files and collaborate, and may also open up some extra features.  You can also disconnect these accounts from your Dropbox account, if you wish.

Delete My Dropbox — This allows you to close your Dropbox account.  See our How to Delete a Dropbox Account tutorial for specific instructions.


This tab has settings that allow you make your Dropbox account more secure and private.

Password — Allows you to change the password to your Dropbox account, or reset it if you've forgotten what it is (and so can't access Dropbox from other devices).

Two-Step Verification — Allows you to enable or disable two-step verification, which is a security feature that requires you to input two passwords (your usual one plus a random one that you receive via a text message on your mobile phone) to log into Dropbox or connect a Dropbox access program to your account on Dropbox.  For more information, see our "Is Dropbox Safe and Secure?" article.

Sessions — This shows you who is logged into your Dropbox account on a web browser.  If you see another computer logged into your account (besides your own), click the "X" to kick them out.

Devices — This shows you which desktop computers, tablet computers, or mobile smart phones can access your Dropbox account through the Dropbox access program.  Click the "X" beside a device to unlink it, preventing it from getting into your Dropbox account.  This is a good idea if you sell or throw away an old computer when you buy a new one.

Apps — Certain third-party computer programs can connect to your account on Dropbox; if they do, they'll show up here.  Like with devices, you can click the "X" next to an application's name to unlink it from your Dropbox account.


That's a rundown of the basic settings for your Dropbox account!


Now, where did you put that file or folder in Dropbox… or is it even on Dropbox at all?  If you don't remember the answer to either of these two questions, the Dropbox website has tools that allow you to find what you're looking for.

If you have the Dropbox program installed on your computer, you can do this quicker and easier!  Learn how by visiting our Dropbox Search in Windows tutorial (here).

How to search on the Dropbox website

To search for your files and folders on Dropbox by using the Dropbox website, start by going to in your web browser and logging in.  Then, click in the box that says "Search" in the top-right corner, and then start typing in the name of the file or folder that you're looking for.

As you type, Dropbox will display results that match your search terms, starting with folders, and then listing individual files.  Click the "X" next to your search terms to reset them, or click Advanced Search if you need more help in narrowing down what you're looking for.

If you click Advanced Search, a window will pop up with more options for refining your search.

Click in any of the text boxes highlighted here to search for:

  • "All of These Words" — The file or folder name must contain all of these search terms (but not necessarily in the order that you typed them in) to count as one of your results.

  • "Any of These Words" — If the file or folder name contains any of these search terms, in any order, it will be counted as one of your results.

  • "The Exact Phrase" — The file or folder name must contain all of these search terms, in the exact order that you typed them in, to count as one of your results.

  • "None of These Words" — If a file or folder name contains any of these search terms, in any order, it will NOT be counted as one of your results.

You can also click the check boxes highlighted here to choose if you want your search results to contain files, folders, and/or even deleted items (this last option is good to try if a basic search doesn't turn up the file or folder that you're looking for).

When everything is set up how you want it, click Search.


That's how you can search for files and folders that you put on Dropbox through the Dropbox website!

Want to make this process a bit simpler?  See our Dropbox Search in Windows tutorial for instructions on how to search through Dropbox right from your computer's desktop!

How to Share Files + Folders on Dropbox

Storing your files on Dropbox means that they're safe against being accidentally changed or deleted on your own hard drive.  But it also makes them super easy to share with other people, especially if those people use Dropbox themselves!

There are two ways to share files and folders over Dropbox.  The first is to create a folder in your "Dropbox" folder (or move a folder there) and use the Dropbox website to invite other people who use Dropbox to share the folder with you (this will also share all files that are inside that folder).  The second is to create a link to that file or folder, and then share that with someone.

Sharing folders vs. sharing links

Sharing folders

When you share a folder with someone over Dropbox, that folder and all of the files in it will show up on the other person's Dropbox account, as well as in the "Dropbox" folder on their device(s), if they have the Dropbox program installed.  That person can edit the folder and any of the files inside it, including adding more files or removing others. 

You can set up the folder so that the person (or people) you share it with can only see the folder and the files inside it, but can't change any of them.  However, this requires you to upgrade your Dropbox account (see our Dropbox Pricing article for more information).

Sharing links

If you share a link to a file or folder inside Dropbox, anyone who has that link (even if they don't use Dropbox) can click on it to see the contents of that folder, or a preview of that file.  They can also download a copy of the file, if they wish.  However, they cannot add, remove, or edit any files in that folder, and they cannot change that file on Dropbox in any way. 

In addition, if you've upgraded your Dropbox account, you can make it so that links to files and folders require a password to unlock, and/or don't work after a specific amount of time.

Some of these methods can be done quicker through a special Dropbox program that you install on your computer, so visit our How to Share Dropbox Files and Folders in Windows tutorial for more information.

How to create a shared folder on Dropbox website

  1. Go to in your web browser and log in.

  2. In your main Dropbox screen, click the share folder icon (); it's the second icon from the right beside the search bar.  Then, choose whether you want to create a new file to share, or share an existing file.  For the purposes of this tutorial, we'll choose to create a new folder and then share it.  Then click Next.

  3. First, you'll be asked to name your new folder.  The text box should already be selected (click inside it if it isn't), so just type in what you want to call your folder, and then click Next.

  4. The next screen is where you set up the options for who you want to share the folder with, and what they can do with that folder.

    First is the check box at the top.  If it's marked, people whom you invite to share this folder can add or remove themselves or other people from the list of people who are sharing this folder (except, of course, for you, the folder's creator).  If it isn't marked, only you can add or remove people from the list of people who can share this folder.

    Next, click in the box labelled "Invite Members To This Folder" and type in the email addresses of your Dropbox-using friends whom you want to share this folder with, each separated by a space.

    Next, you can decide what the people whom you're sharing this folder with can do with the files inside the folder: whether they Can Edit them or only Can View them.  Note that in order to make it so that the people sharing a folder can only view the files inside, you have to have at least a Dropbox Pro account.

    You can also click in the box labelled "Add a Message" and type in a custom invitation for the people you've listed to share this folder on Dropbox with you (but you don't have to).  When you're all done, click Share Folder.

  5. You can also share a folder that you've already created in or moved to Dropbox.  To begin, simply find the folder on the Dropbox website, click the Share button beside it, and then click Invite People to Collaborate.

    If the folder you're trying to share has already been shared, simply click in the box labelled "Invite More People".  Either way, the process is pretty much the same as it was in step 4.

    NOTE: If you are not the creator of a folder that you're sharing, you will not have the option to decide if other people who share this folder can invite more people or remove current people.  Also, if the creator of the folder has declined this option themselves, you will not be able to invite more people to share that folder, or remove current people who are sharing the folder.

Once you complete step 4 or 5, an email invitation will be sent to each person whom you want to share the folder with.  If they click the link inside the invitation to accept it, they will now be able to see the folder and its files, and make changes to each as they see fit (unless you've upgraded your account and have only allowed them to view the folder).

You can tell that a folder is being shared with someone if the folder icon has a picture of two person icons, and under the "Kind" header, it says "Shared Folder".

How to share a link to a file or folder on Dropbox website

  1. Go to in your web browser and log in (if you haven't already).

  2. Find a file or folder in your main Dropbox screen that you want to share a link to.  Click the Share button beside it; if it's a folder, you must also click Send Link (so Dropbox knows to only share a link to the folder and not the folder itself).

  3. Dropbox will create a link to the file or folder that you want to share.  If you have upgraded your Dropbox account, you can click Set Visibility/Expiration to lock this link with a password, or set it to stop working after a certain amount of time.  Otherwise, anyone who has this link can see the file or folder until it is changed or removed.

    Anyway, click in the box marked "Email or Name" and type in the email addresses of the people whom you want to send this link to, each separated by a space.  Then, you can click in the box marked "Message (Optional)" and type in a short explanation of what's in the file or folder that you're sharing a link to.  Then, click Send.

  4. You can also do step 2, but instead of filling out the form in step 3, simply right-click on the link to the file or folder that Dropbox generates, and select Copy in the menu that appears.

    From there, you can right-click and select Paste to put your link wherever you want people to see it: in an email, on your website, in a comment, and more!

And those are the two ways that you can share files and folders on Dropbox!

Our brand ambassador, Abby Stokes, also has some extra information on how to share files and folders in Dropbox, as well as further instructions on how to use Dropbox in general.  You can find them in this readable tutorial, or in this YouTube video walkthrough

Finally, to learn how to share stuff quicker and easier through a Dropbox program installed on your computer, head to our How to Share Dropbox Files and Folders in Windows tutorial!

How To Retrieve Files from Dropbox on the Web

Okay, so now you have your files on Dropbox.  That means you can get at them from all of your different devices, and recover them or revert to past versions if they get deleted or changed, respectively.  But what if you’re taking your device somewhere where you don’t have Internet access, but you still want to work with your files while you’re there?  Or what if you want to safeguard a copy of a file that you’ve shared with someone, or that they’ve shared with you, in case it gets changed or deleted on Dropbox and you miss the 30-day deadline for recovering it (with a free account)?

If you want to take your files off Dropbox and put them back on your computer, you can open them on the Dropbox website and then save them somewhere on your computer.

You can also download files from Dropbox more easily if you install a special Dropbox program on your computer.  See our How to Download Files from Dropbox in Windows tutorial to see how it works!

How to download files from the Dropbox website

  1. Go to in your web browser and log in.

  2. Use the main screen on Dropbox to find the file that you want to download from Dropbox.  It works similarly to the file explorer system on your Windows desktop; if your file’s inside a folder on Dropbox, simply click on the folder’s name or icon to open it.

    Once you find the file that you want, click on it anywhere that ISN’T its icon, its name, or the Share button that appears, in order to select it.  Then, click Open.

  3. This will open the file in a program that you have installed that can open it, and you can use that program to save the file as you would normally.

  4. Make sure that the place that you’re saving the file ISN’T in your “Dropbox” folder (if you have the Dropbox access program installed), rename the file or change its type (if you wish), and then click Save.

There… you now have a copy of the file separate from Dropbox!


For more on downloading files off of Dropbox, as well as other things that you can do with Dropbox, our brand ambassador, Abby Stokes, has this how-to video on YouTube that you can watch!

How to Upload to

Uploading files to Dropbox means that you’re putting them on Dropbox for safe keeping.  You can get at them from the Dropbox website itself.  You can also share them with other people, and recover them if they get deleted or changed accidentally.

Many of these actions can also be done directly on your computer by installing a special Dropbox program.  It’s usually quicker and easier than doing them on the website, so see our How to Upload Files to Dropbox in Windows tutorial to find out how!

How to upload files through the Dropbox website

  1. Go to in your web browser.

  2. Click Sign In, click in the text boxes that appear and type in your email address and password, and then click the “Sign In” button.

  3. When you get to your main page on Dropbox, click the upload button (); it’s the first icon on the left beside the search bar.

  4. When the window below pops up, click Choose Files.

  5. This will open an explorer window, in order to let you select the files that you want to put on Dropbox.  Navigate through your files until you find the file that you want to put on Dropbox, click it to select it, and then click Open.

  6. You can click Add More Files and repeat step 5 for however many more files you want to upload for Dropbox.  Otherwise, once all of your files have finished loading, click Done.

  7. When you’re on your main screen in Dropbox, you can also upload files simply by finding one on your computer, clicking and holding the mouse button down on it, dragging it onto your main screen in Dropbox, and then releasing the mouse button.

That’s about all there is to uploading files to Dropbox through their website!

For more on how to upload files to Dropbox, as well as how to use the program in general, check out this handy guide put together by our brand ambassador, Abby Stokes.  (NOTE: You may need the Adobe Reader program in order to read it.)

Abby also has this instructional video on YouTube that you can watch, too!