Dropbox is a file hosting service operated by Dropbox, Inc. that offers cloud storage, file synchronization and client software. It allows users to synchronize a folder located on the server in the user's home directory to a Dropbox account of their choosing.
Files (pictures, documents, music etc.) added, deleted or modified from one device (eg. a mobile smartphone running the Dropbox app) will synchronize/propagate to all other devices synced to the same Dropbox account.
Dropbox offers a free service starting with 2GB of cloud storage. You can earn or purchase additional space, as required. See the Dropbox website for pricing and details.
Neither ClearCenter nor the ClearFoundation has any affiliation or partnership with Dropbox Inc. This free app simply facilitates an administrator or users creating Dropbox targets on a server running ClearOS.
You can find this feature in the menu system at the following location:
In addition, a user plugin which allows users to configure their Dropbox accounts can navigate after logging in as their account username to:
Installing the Dropbox app can be done via the Marketplace. If you search on term “Dropbox” you will find three Dropbox apps (2 if your system is configured as an LDAP slave to another master server).
Dropbox - Core app containing libraries, configuration and admin controls
Dropbox for Users - A UI interface to allow users to configure the Dropbox account to their home directory
Dropbox Plugin - A plugin to the ClearOS directory server that provides Dropbox access based on group policy
As of this writing, you will want to install *all three* apps from the Marketplace. As previously mentioned, the plugin app is not required if your LDAP directory is an acting slave to a master directory on another ClearOS server.
Why separate apps? It may be desirable for an administrator (not the end user) to configure Dropbox accounts from the admin and prevent users from being able to sync their Dropbox folder themselves. Aside from the security standpoint, users could associate a Dropbox containing hundred's of GB
of space, using up a server's disk without an admin knowing or having control. Future features will make the management of users and Dropbox accounts scalable for use-cases outside the home.
Once you have the 2 or 3 Dropbox apps installed on the server, it is time to configure/initialize the service. To do this, you need to login as the root user or a sub-admin that has permissions to configure the Dropbox app.
As root (or a sub-admin with required ACL), navigate to the Dropbox configuration. Here, you will see a list of all currently configured Dropbox users as well as a Group Policy list showing the plugin required to provide Drobox access to a user account.
Adding Dropbox Users
Adding Dropbox users can be done in any of three ways:
Click on the “Edit Members” link on the Dropbox main admin page
Check “Enable” on the Dropbox plugin when creating new user accounts via the Users
Add flag to the Dropbox plugin field when creating a Account Import
Once a user has been added as a member to the Dropbox group, they have the ability to sync *one* Dropbox account of their choosing. Users do this via the “Dropbox User” page under “My Account” when logged in as the user. See next section for details.
As an administrator (root), you will not be able to start/stop the service until at least one user has gone through the user initialization step.
As a user, login to webconfig. If you have been added as a Dropbox user by the administrator, you will see a 'Dropbox' menu under 'My Account'.
If your Dropbox account has not yet been configured, you will see an option to create a Dropbox account or continue. If you do not have a Dropbox account or wish to create a new one specifically for this ClearOS account, click on the “Create Dropbox Account” link. Otherwise, proceed to the next step.
Confirm your intent to start the initialization process
It will take a few seconds for the Dropbox daemon to initialize your account and create a unique key to associate your home folder with a Dropbox cloud storage account.
Once complete, a new button will appear. This button contains the Dropbox key which will take you up to the Dropbox website so you can confirm your intent to add your ClearOS account as a Dropbox client.
Login to the account you had or created in step 1. If you were already logged, in to a Dropbox account in your browser, you will not see this step.
A second confirmation requiring your to enter your Dropbox password will complete the process. Once done, file synchronization will begin from the Cloud service to the local daemon on the ClearOS server. A Dropbox folder will automatically be created for you in your home directory. Access to this folder can be done in any number of ways (Samba share, FTP, Flexshare HTTP, Shell etc.).
Resetting an Account
Deleting/resetting a Dropbox account can be done via the User Dropbox app. Click on the “Reset” button.
It is advisable to dis-associate a device inside the Dropbox account before resetting through the ClearOS Webconfig UI.
Login to your Dropbox account and navigate to “Settings –> Security” from your username link at the top right hand side of the portal page.
Find your device in the listing and click “Unlink”. Once done, proceed to Reset your Dropbox account from ClearOS's Webconfig.
Your Dropbox folder will be deleted from home directory.