I use Dropbox for business on my machine, and so I have a Dropbox (Personal) folder, a Dropbox (mybusiness) folder, and a symlink from Dropbox to Dropbox (Personal).

The Dropbox (Personal) folder is causing me problems, because I have code in a subdirectory, and when I try to use a virtualenv with pip, it objects to the spaces in the path.

I've renamed Dropbox (Personal) to Dropbox_Personal and updated the symlink, but now the Dropbox app says it won't work until I change the name back.

Is there a way I can tell it just to use the new folder?

2 Answers 2


I had the same problem. Try this (which is working for me so far) on MacOS:

  • Make a backup
  • Make another backup, somewhere else.
  • Create a "Dropbox" folder in whatever location you want.
  • Copy your files from "Dropbox (Personal)" to the new "Dropbox"
  • Remove/delete the "Dropbox (Personal)" folder.
  • At this point the Dropbox app will complain and offer to 'Relink' or 'Quit'.
  • 'Quit'
  • Create a symbolic link called "Dropbox (Personal)" pointing to your recently created "Dropbox" folder.

      ln -s /pathtofolder/Dropbox "Dropbox (Personal)"
  • Restart the Dropbox App.

At this point, for me, it works well.

This is slightly different (I think) to other suggestions because in this case the "Dropbox" folder is a 'real' folder. The Dropbox app is happy because it syncs with "Dropbox (Personal)" and my programs are working directly on "Dropbox" so there are no issues with embedded spaces.

  • Seems rather hacky at best.
    – nuzzolilo
    Jun 10, 2020 at 7:56
  • Works great on Ubuntu 20.04. Hacky but a great way to get rid of paths with special characters. Jan 14, 2021 at 10:33
  • Quicker: 1. Quit the app 2. Rename folder 3. Simlink 4. Start the app.
    – FNia
    Feb 6, 2022 at 2:36
  • Explaining the above comment a bit more, in retrospect: you don't need to copy and delete the original folder (and make 2 backups!) when you can simply and safely rename it to "Dropbox". Then use the ln -s ... command shown above to create the symlink (step 3 in the comment).
    – FNia
    Sep 9, 2022 at 3:08

You can rename "Dropbox (Personal)" back to Dropbox and symlink "Dropbox (Personal)" to it, you did remove the symlink (~/Dropbox) first and recreate later.

cd ~

rm -f Dropbox && mv "Dropbox (Personal)" Dropbox && ln -s Dropbox "Dropbox (Personal)"

You can make symbolic links invisible in the Finder

chflags -h hidden ~/"Dropbox (Personal)"

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