Dropbox recently adopted the File Provider API available on macOS to be used as the exclusive way to synchronize files with their own app. The most prominent change from a user perspective is the limitation to store all synchronized files in ~/Library/CloudStorage as required by the File Provider API. Many users with large data sets preferred to set a custom location on an external disk previously which is no longer an option.
Use Mountain Duck instead of the official Dropbox client
Mountain Duck is a viable alternative to the official Dropbox client. It allows to connect to and synchronize your files in Dropbox without any additional bloat. In Mountain Duck Preferences, you can change your cache location to a different folder or even to an external drive.
Connecting to Dropbox
Mounting your Dropbox in Finder is straight forward using Mountain Duck:
Select Open Connection within the Mountain Duck dropdown menu
Select Dropbox from the protocol section on the top and choose Connect
Your web browser will open leading you through the authentication and authorization flow
Once successfully connected, your files from Dropbox will open in Finder. To connect to a single folder instead of the root, add a path to your bookmark configuration. Without adding a Path to the bookmark configuration, you will be connected to the root of your Dropbox.
Connect to multiple accounts
Connect to and work with multiple Dropbox accounts simultaneously. Repeat the above steps to connect to an additional Dropbox account you may have access. Open a new bookmark and login to the other Dropbox account in your web browser when authorizing access for Mountain Duck.
Use Cyberduck to retrieve files from Dropbox without syncing
Alternatively, use Cyberduck to browse your Dropbox without syncing the files to your computer.
Boxcryptor has been acquired by Dropbox and will terminate free accounts as of January 31, 2023. Till then, all users have to look for an alternative. It is not clear how customers with existing contracts are served in the future and no new accounts are accepted. So why not use Mountain Duck with support for the Cryptomator vault format independent from a single provider?
Mountain Duck allows you to mount multiple cloud storages and servers as network drives on macOS and Windows using Smart Synchronization for offline access. Use the built-in, fully interoperable support for Cryptomator vaults to encrypt your sensitive data in password-protected vaults with end-to-end and zero-knowledge encryption. You do not need to have the Cryptomator apps installed but can access the same vault using Cryptomator for iOS for example.
Cryptomator is free and open-source software with no security by obscurity, no hidden backdoors from third parties, no need to trust anyone except yourself. No online services, no subscriptions, no accounts.
Follow these steps to migrate documents currently in Boxcryptor to a Cryptomator vault accessible through Mountain Duck:
In Smart Synchronizationconnect mode all files you work with (e.g. open, save, upload or explicitly choose to keep offline) are saved in the local cache to shorten access times and to make them editable when offline. Depending on the size of your files, this might eat up your local disk space. This can be problematic in particular for computers with a small SSD disk. The new cache management feature gives you the ability to define a retention time for files and to limit the size of the cache in general. Both settings can be enabled either separately or in combination.
The first option defines the retention time in days after which a file is purged from the cache when it was not accessed during this period. The size option is a soft limit that does apply on a bookmark basis and excludes files marked to be kept offline by the user. In any case, older files are always purged first.
Using the buttons in the lower-left corner, you can perform different actions on the selected version:
Revert to this version
Delete the version permanently
View the version using QuickLook on macOS or open this version in the default editor application on Windows.
The versioning feature is now available for Amazon S3, Backblaze B2, Dropbox, Google Drive, Google Cloud Storage, Microsoft OneDrive, and Microsoft Sharepoint connections. You can find full interoperability information in the documentation available.
Mountain Duck 4.12 introduces a new Notifications tab in Preferences that allows customizing the notifications to be displayed. In particular it allows fine tuning which notifications to receive when file changes are detected on the server and background synchronization activity.
Cyberduck 8.2 and Mountain Duck 4.10.0 introduce support for accessing Box not only through their FTP or WebDAV gateway but using the native Box API. This should not only improve performance but additionally allow enabling two-factor authentication (2FA) for the account. The new implementation allows to create download and upload shares of files or folders for people who are not Box users by using File → Share…in Cybereduck or Create Download Share or Create Upload Share from the Mountain Duck context menu respectively.
The latest versions of Cyberduck and Mountain Duck now run natively on Apple M1 hardware. Thus we are again shipping a universal binary on macOS since dropping support for PPC and Intel 32-bit (i386) in version 4.4 released in October 2013.
Cyberduck 8 and Mountain Duck 4.8 introduce a new Profiles preferences tab that allows to install additional connection profiles on demand. This makes it much easier to connect to various hosting and cloud storage service providers without the need to lookup connection details other than credentials.
You can either scroll through the list of profiles or use the Search function. To install a connection profile simply enable the corresponding checkbox. The profile will be downloaded and saved in the “Profiles” folder of the application support directory right away. Since Mountain Duck and Cyberduck refer to the same application support directory the connection profiles are shared between both applications. Disabling the checkbox deactivates the connection profile for the currently used application.
Service providers that define connection profiles and open an issue to request the connection profile to be added to the default repository.
Mountain Duck 4 introduced labels to assign to bookmarks to allow grouping in folders in the status bar and system tray menu. To further ease the lookup of bookmarks for power users with many connections we have now added a search field in the menu in version 4.4 as known from the Cyberduck browser window.