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I have had a folder shared with me containing a few TB of files, about 1GB each.

With any other cloud storage service I could simply download the whole folder at once or use something like rclone to download the items at my own pace.

However, it seems Dropbox has caught out plenty of paying customers. If you try and download the contents that have been shared with you from a Pro account you receive an error such as The zip file is too large, or the folder is too large to download.

It turns out that Dropbox have hidden away some arbitrary limitations (for reasons kept to themselves). While they have increased from the original 1GB/file it's still impossible to have files larger than 50GB with dropbox.com. Even worse you can't download any folder with a total size >20GB in one go (or any folder containing more than 10,000 files). This limit is because they zip the files before users download in bulk, it's not a restriction aimed at preventing users from downloading the files.

There have been several lengthy threads on the community forums bemoaning the fact that people and their clients can't use the server for what it is sold for.

I have searched multiple threads on Dropbox.com and here as well as across the wider internet and have not found any way to automate downloading the contents of shared folders that are greater than 20GB in total size. Dropbox are happy for the files to be downloaded, they just have not been able to provide a tool to make it quicker for users.

Dropbox and they have said the only way is to pay for another Dropbox Pro account (the person sharing has already subscribed) so that I have enough Dropbox space to temporarily sync to my PC even though I just want to download the files. The folder is >1TB so far too big for my hard drive let alone my Dropbox account. I can download the files manually, there is no restriction on that and the user sharing them has paid for the storage. I don't want to have to buy a paid account for a one-off folder download that I won't be keeping in my Dropbox.

Previous on-topic questions haven't come up with a working solution.

Is there really no workaround or solution to make this quicker than manually downloading each file individually? Dropbox are very happy to allow you to save the files but neither they or their users have provided a computer software solution that I have found yet. Is anyone aware of one or the best way to create one myself?

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  • Not possible as per my question. – Turkeyphant Jul 23 at 16:17
  • What an odd and incredibly patronising answer. Did you actually read my question? I'm fully aware of how Dropbox works but that is not any use in this instance. Also, please don't edit questions when there is nothing wrong with them. Collective nouns can use appropriate verbs. "They are", "they have", etc. – Turkeyphant Jul 23 at 22:35

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