Dropbox Tutorial

by Jason Spidle

Dropbox is an online file synchronization tool that stores files and folders in the cloud so they can be accessed from anywhere. Computers and mobile devices configured with the Dropbox client will automatically synchronize new files and file change,s thus providing access to the files stored in your Dropbox no matter what computer or device you are using. Dropbox aims to make setup of the service a simple process, but there are some key things to know before using the service.

Installation and Configuration

Download the installation wizard from Dropbox. The software is compatible with Windows, Mac and Linux.

Double-click the installation file to begin setup.

Register for a free Dropbox account and then click "Next."

Type a name for the computer you are configuring and then click "Next."

Review the Dropbox tour, clicking "Next" after each slide until you arrive at the folder selection step.

Specify the location of your Dropbox folder if you wish to change the default location and then click "Finish." Dropbox will automatically configure your Dropbox folder to appear in your profile folder.

Repeat the installation process on any other computers you wish to keep in sync with Dropbox. You can use Dropbox to synchronize files across different operating systems because the software is compatible with Windows, Mac and Linux.

Synchronize files by storing them in your Dropbox folder. You can create sub-folders within the Dropbox folder to organize your files. Whatever files are saved to your Dropbox folder will be synced with other computers and devices.

Restoring Deleted Files

Launch a Web browser and navigate to Dropbox.

Log in to your Dropbox account.

Click "Show deleted files." Deleted files and folders will be displayed with gray text.

Click the drop-down arrow at the end of the file or folder and select "Undelete" to restore the file. Dropbox will keep deleted files on its server for 30 days, allowing you to recover accidentally deleted files.

Sharing Folders

Launch a Web browser and navigate to Dropbox.

Log in to your Dropbox account.

Click the drop-down arrow at the end of a folder and select "Invite to folder." Sharing is only available for folders.

Type the email addresses of the people you would like to share the folder with and then click "Share Folder." The users you invite will need to install Dropbox on their computers to have access to your shared folders. Once Dropbox is installed, your shared folders will be synced to the invited user's computer.


  • Dropbox offers syncing clients for the iPhone, Android-powered smart phones and BlackBerry smart phones. You can install this software for free from the application store available on your device.

About the Author

Jason Spidle is a technology enthusiast and writer. His writing on computers, smartphones, Web design, Internet applications, sports and music has been published at a variety of websites including Salon, JunkMedia, Killed in Cars and The Columbia Free Times. Spidle maintains a number of blogs featuring poetry, short stories and other fiction.

More Articles