Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I synced a folder called "travel". I want to exclude a file in this folder from being synced. Is this possible? Do the other big syncers, like dropbox and mozy, have this feature?

share|improve this question

Ubuntu One does not currently support this; a workaround would be to move the folder out from the folder it is currently in (and point a symlink at it from the synced folder if necessary), or rename it to something unique and add that name to the 'ignore' pattern list (this second way is rather tricky; please read the note below).

Here's how to do the first: assuming travel is in a directory called misc, and that the subdirectory of travel you don't want synced is called huge, open a terminal (Applications » Accessories » Terminal) , and type:

 cd misc
 mv travel/huge .travel_huge
 ln -s ../.travel_huge tavel/huge

note that .travel_huge is a hidden directory, so you wouldn't normally see it in the nauitlus and file pickers.

dangerous bend

Here's how you do the second, asuming the unique name you chose for huge is huge-pics-of-acorn-trees-february-2011: first, edit ~/.config/ubuntuone/syncdaemon.conf (you can use Applications » Accessories » Text Editor) and add the following to the __main__ section (if the file doesn't exist, prepend the following by a line containing just [__main__]):

ignore = \A#.*\Z

or you could simply rename the folder to something already covered by the current ignore list, such as huge.tmp or huge.pyc, but I doubt you'll like that.

Please do note, however, that the second method described is rather fragile: make sure you've updated the configuration file and restarted syncdaemon (with u1sdtool -q; u1sdtool -c) before creating the toplevel directory. If the directory already exists, do not move it to the ignored name with the syncdaemon running; rather, stop syncdaemon, rename the folder, edit the ignore list, and start syncdaemon. Alternatively move the folder out of the synced hierarchy, and rename it before moving it back in. Otherwise it might not work as you'd expect it to, if at all.

I understand dropbox has the feature (I've seen a video explaining how to use it), but I haven't checked and it might only be in a beta or something like that.

share|improve this answer

In answer to your question about the other big syncers: Dropbox doesn't appear to have a way to selectively ignore specific files/file types, but this post by Dylan R. provides a way to selectively ignore folders.

In a nutshell, it goes like this:

  1. Back it up, just in case :)
  2. Quit whatever application may be using/writing to the folder
  3. Move the folder that you want to not sync out of dropbox
  4. Let that sync
  5. Make a folder with the same exact name in the same exact place
  6. Use Selective Sync to stop syncing that (empty) folder. It will remove the (now-empty) folder.
  7. Move your original folder back in.

It'll get a gray minus icon, and is no longer syncing. (the empty folder has to remain on Dropbox, but it's empty, so not taking up space)

share|improve this answer
please mind the tags, it's ubuntu-one related question. – Paulius Šukys May 11 '13 at 17:21
@shookees please mind the questions content - I quote from the question: "Do the other big syncers, like dropbox and mozy, have this feature?" Thanks for the downvote ): – drevicko May 12 '13 at 10:28
it doesn't qualify as an answer to his question, more like a comment. – Paulius Šukys May 12 '13 at 13:37
I edited my answer to make it clear it's not about ubuntu-one. I thought about making it a comment, but there was rather too much content. I'd found this question looking for an answer to the same but about Dropbox, so I thought it a good place to put the answer I subsequently found. Could have asked a new question, but thought there's no need, when it's already asked here. – drevicko May 12 '13 at 23:47

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.