Davidson provides free Dropbox accounts for employees and students. These accounts have unlimited storage (within reason, of course) and are accessible from both computers and mobile devices. Dropbox is the preferred platform for file-sharing and departmental file storage.
Log into the Dropbox website and set up your account
- Open a browser on your device and navigate to dropbox.com
- In the upper right corner of the Dropbox site, click on the Sign in link.
- On the Login screen, type in your full Davidson email address but do NOT enter your password.
- Within seconds, Dropbox should recognize your Davidson email address and the password field should disappear. Click on the Continue button.
- On the Davidson single sign-on (SSO) screen, click on sso.davidson.edu
- On the subsequent page, type in your Davidson email address and password. Click on the Sign in button to proceed.
- If you are enrolled in Duo two-factor authentication, you will need to authenticate using the Duo app on your smartphone or tablet or via the Duo token.
- You should now see your Dropbox folder "in the cloud;" that is, on the Dropbox website.
Download and install the Dropbox application
- On your cloud-based Dropbox folder, look in the upper right corner. Just to the right of the Search field, you will see two icons. The "bell" icon is used to view notifications. The second, a "smiley face" icon, is used to access your profile settings. Click on the "smiley face" icon and select Install from the drop-down list.
- Click on the Download Dropbox button.
- Find the Dropbox installation program on your local hard drive (typically in the Downloads folder) and double-click on the file to launch the installation.
- If you are on a Windows computer, your next steps are to click on Run and then click on Yes. On a Mac, double-click on the Dropbox.app icon, then click on the Open button.
Set up the Dropbox application
- When the installation is complete, you should see the Set Up Dropbox dialog box. Enter your Davidson email address but do NOT type in a password.
- Within seconds, Dropbox should recognize your Davidson email address and the password field should disappear. Click on the Get your link code button.
- You should now see a Dropbox web page providing you with a link code. (You might have to authenticate using the Davidson SSO page first.) Click on the Copy Link Code button and then close your browser.
- Back on the Set Up Dropbox dialog box, click on the Paste button, then on Submit.
- Click on the Open my Dropbox folder button.
- On a Mac, there will be a couple more steps. First, you will need to authenticate using your Mac administrator credentials. Next, you will also have to click on the Give Access to Dropbox button on the subsequent dialog box.
The briefest of introductions to Dropbox
- You now have a cloud-based Dropbox account linked to a Dropbox folder on your local hard drive. The magic of this combination is that anything you copy into your Dropbox folder will automatically be uploaded to the cloud. Once uploaded, it is accessible at any time from any location simply by logging into your cloud account.
- Once a file is uploaded to the cloud, Dropbox's "smart sync" kicks in. In a nutshell, "smart sync" means that Dropbox stores your file in the cloud but keeps only a link to that file on your local hard drive. You can access the file at any time by double-clicking on it, whereupon it will be downloaded automatically.
- The huge benefit of "smart sync" is that you can store gigabytes of data in the cloud but Dropbox will only store a fraction of that amount locally. When you need a specific file, it is quickly accessible.
- Learn about sharing files in Dropbox, by reading our Knowledge Base article about sharing folders and files in Dropbox.