I am trying to move my Dropbox folder to a different location in the same drive, but am unable to do so. It keeps saying:

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Now I have closed every program and have also checked with Process Explorer that nothing is using Dropbox or the Dropbox folder, except for Dropbox of course! Why is this happening? I cannot just close Dropbox.. How will I move the folder then if not from Dropbox Preferences?

I'm using Dropbox 1.6.10 running on my Windows 8 system.


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  • Have you tried closing Dropbox complete, relaunching then moving the folder? – colealtdelete Dec 26 '12 at 20:36
  • Have you tried dissociating that computer from dropbox, moving the folder, reassociating it and pointing it to the new location? – EBGreen Dec 26 '12 at 20:38
  • @Cole I have even restarted my system several times, need I say more? – Rahul Thakur Dec 26 '12 at 20:39
  • @EBGreen I am pretty sure that'll re-sync everything. I don't want to re-sync! Besides, there is an option to Move provided by Dropbox only, why should I've to do it manually! – Rahul Thakur Dec 26 '12 at 20:40
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    @DanielChateau Now, that is the correct answer, I did not know that Process Explorer masks handles. Thanks man. The problem was due to the Desktoppr App I use, the folder was being used by Windows Media Player Network Sharing Service (wmpnetwk.exe) which was being masked. Please post your comment as an answer so that I can mark it as correct :) – Rahul Thakur Dec 27 '12 at 7:38

Ensure that Process Explorer is running with elevated privileges. By default it will not run with elevated privileges and as such, won't show you all file handles since its access to read certain process's resource information is denied. You should then be able to see which process is holding onto that directory, and thus kill said process.

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I just had the same symptoms, but not the same cause.

In my case I was copying from my original C:\Users\Tyson\Dropbox to D:\SomeLongerRootPathThanBefore\Dropbox.

I wasn't aware at the time, but I had filepaths in my original dropbox folder approaching the NTFS length limit. When moving these over to the longer root folder, they went over the limit. Dropbox fails with the same 'some files could not be moved, please try again' but doesn't give you any more details.

If you want to check this is the case, do a copy and paste of your dropbox folder using standard Windows Explorer. Windows (at least in 7 onwards) gives you nice explanatory messages nowadays.

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  • Did you finally manage to move it? I'm trying to move from D:\Dropbox to E:\Dropbox, and I get this same error, although both paths are the same length! – MiniGod Oct 15 '14 at 14:50

You'll have to close the Dropbox app. There's no other way to move the directory. I've done this a few times already – it even works across operating systems. Imagine you set up a new machine: You can copy the Dropbox contents from a backup to the folder, then install Dropbox for the first time, and it'll know that it already synced these files.

In essence: You point Dropbox to the new location and based on its index it'll recognize that the files are still the same.

This will merely trigger a re-indexing procedure that may take a few minutes depending on the amount of files. But there's no re-uploading involved.

If you want to be absolutely sure, you can copy the folder contents instead of moving them, then point Dropbox to the new folder, and watch it re-index. Once it's done, delete the old folder.

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  • Then why is there an option in Dropbox to "Move" the Dropbox folder? – Rahul Thakur Dec 26 '12 at 21:10
  • I'm sorry, I'm on OS X and there's no such option available. Didn't know it was there. – slhck Dec 26 '12 at 21:13
  • No problem, in Windows they do, but I did not see anyone post a problem with this, unfortunate me. – Rahul Thakur Dec 26 '12 at 21:17

Actually, the easiest way is to download Unlocker and then unlock all processes that are using your dropbox folder. Then move it and it will work.

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