In this guide, we will show you how you can fix There was an error downloading or uploading your file errors on Dropbox. Whenever they try to download a file or folder, this error is shown. Along with this error message, it also says that This file can’t be previewed.
Why is there an error downloading from Dropbox?
If you are facing an error while downloading files on Dropbox, it is mostly because you are not connected to an active or stable internet connection, or there is a server issue at the end of Dropbox. Browser issues can also lead to errors while downloading files on Dropbox.
Why is my Dropbox file not uploading?
Upload issues on Dropbox are caused due to internet connectivity problems, server issues, or Dropbox cache. Besides that, if the filename, size, or type is not supported by Dropbox, it can cause upload errors on Dropbox.
Fix There was an error downloading your file in Dropbox
If you are also experiencing the There was an error downloading your file error when downloading a file on Dropbox, here are fixes you can use:
- Initial checklists.
- Clear your browser cache and cookies.
- Open Dropbox in an incognito or private tab.
- Switch to a different web browser.
- Use the Dropbox desktop app.
- Reinstall the Dropbox app.
1] Initial checklists
Before you attempt to download your files and folders on Dropbox or try an advanced troubleshooting method, there are certain things you need to check. Here are the things you need to make sure of to stop getting There was an error downloading your file error:
- Firstly, make sure your internet connection is stable and working fine. You need to be connected to an active internet connection to download files locally from Dropbox.
- Besides that, check the current server status of Dropbox and make sure its services are available and running. Visit the status.dropbox.com page and ensure that its servers are not down.
- If you are using a VPN, try disabling it and then download Dropbox files to see if the error is stopped.
2] Clear your browser cache and cookies
If you are using the web app of Dropbox, the error could be caused due to an outdated browser cookie or cache. Hence, clear the browser cache and cookies and then see if the error is fixed.
- First, click on the three-dot menu button in Google Chrome and move to the More tools > Clear browsing data option.
- In the prompted dialog box, choose All time as the Time range.
- Now, checkmark the options called Cookies and other site data and Caches images and files.
- Finally, press the Clear data button to let Chrome clear the browsing data.
- See if you are able to download files on Dropbox or not.
- First, open Firefox and click on the three-bar menu button.
- After that, click on the History option and choose the Clear recent history button.
- Now, make sure you set the Time range to Everything and tick the Cached and Cookies boxes.
- Next, tap on the OK button.
- Once done, reopen Firefox and go to Dropbox to check if the error is fixed.
- First, open Edge, click on the Settings and more button.
- Now, select the History option and then tap on the three-dot menu button inside the History panel.
- Next, click on the Clear browsing data option and tick the Cookies and other site data and Cached images and files checkboxes.
- After that, set All time as the Time range for clearing the browsing data and press the Clear now button.
- When done, restart Edge and check if this Dropbox error is resolved.
3] Open Dropbox in an incognito or private tab
See if you can download Dropbox files in an incognito or private mode. There can be certain add-ons or web extensions causing errors and issues while downloading a file. If that is the case indeed, you can open Dropbox in an incognito tab in your browser and then try to download your files.
Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge let you open an incognito or InPrivate tab using the Ctrl+Shift+N hotkey. If you use Firefox, press Ctrl+Shift+P to quickly open a private tab. Once the private tab is opened, go to your Dropbox account and check if the error is fixed.
If the error has stopped in incognito mode, you can disable or remove suspicious extensions from your browser to fix the error.
4] Switch to a different web browser
Another thing you can do is try a different web browser to access your Dropbox account. There might be some temporary issue with your current web browser which is why you can’t download your files. So, change your web browser and check if the error is resolved.
5] Use the Dropbox desktop app
If the web app of Dropbox is not working properly for you, use the Dropbox desktop app. The error might be resolved in the desktop app and you will be able to download your files.
6] Reinstall the Dropbox app
If you are unable to download files using the Dropbox app, it might be the case that the app is corrupted or not installed correctly. Hence, you can uninstall the Dropbox app and reinstall its latest version on your computer.
Fix Dropbox errors while uploading files
Some Dropbox users have also reported experiencing errors while uploading their files to this cloud storage service. Many have reported getting error messages like Something went wrong while uploading this file, etc. The upload errors on Dropbox could be caused due to one of the following reasons:
- If your internet connection is weak.
- In case the Dropbox servers are down.
- The filename, size, or type is not supported by Dropbox.
- Incorrect Dropbox settings.
- Not enough available space left on your Dropbox account.
- Due to large Dropbox cache files.
- Outdated Dropbox version.
If you are unable to upload files to Dropbox, here are the solutions you can use:
- Make sure Dropbox servers are not down and your network connection is stable.
- Make sure Dropbox is up-to-date.
- Check the size, name, and type of the file you are uploading to Dropbox.
- Check if the file is opened in another program.
- Change Dropbox’s bandwidth settings.
- Disable proxy.
- Clear the Dropbox cache.
- Ensure that you have enough free space to upload new files.
1] Make sure Dropbox servers are not down and your network connection is stable
First and foremost, you need to ensure that the Dropbox services are running currently and not facing any server outage or issue. Besides that, you also need to make sure that your internet connection is active and there is no connectivity issue.
2] Make sure Dropbox is up-to-date
Having an up-to-date version of Dropbox is recommended to avoid issues like this. So, update your Dropbox app and check if the problem is resolved.
3] Check the size, name, and type of the file you are uploading to Dropbox
If the file you are trying to upload contains invalid characters in its filename that are not supported by Dropbox, you will not be able to upload the file. In addition to that, if you are uploading a file greater than the size supported by Dropbox or the file type is not supported by Dropbox, you will experience upload errors. Hence, check the size, name, and type of the file and make sure it is supported by Dropbox.
The filename in Dropbox has restrictions like the filename should not exceed 260 characters, it can’t contain special symbols (/, \, <, >, etc.), and you can’t add space after the name of the file, like TWC .jpg. So, make sure you follow these restrictions before uploading your files.
The next thing to check is the size of the file. The maximum file size supported by the desktop app is 2TB. Although, your file should be smaller than the storage space you own.
Dropbox supports most of the common documents, images, and other types of files. However, if you are trying to upload an uncommon file format, export it to a generic format and then upload it to Dropbox.
4] Check if the file is opened in another program
If you are trying to upload a file that is already opened in some other application on your PC, you might get an error. So, close that application and then upload the file on Dropbox.
5] Change Dropbox’s bandwidth settings
The upload errors are likely to be caused due to bandwidth limitations on Dropbox. Hence, if the scenario is applicable, you can adjust your Dropbox’s bandwidth settings and see if the error is resolved. Here’s how:
- First, open your Dropbox app and right-click on its icon from the system tray.
- Now, click on your profile icon and choose the Preferences option.
- Next, move to the Bandwidth tab and make sure you have selected the Don’t limit option under the Upload rate section.
- Once done, press the Apply > OK button to save changes.
6] Disable proxy
If you are using a proxy on Dropbox, it might cause this error. So, disable the proxy and then see if the error is resolved. Here’s how:
- First, right-click on Dropbox’s icon from the system tray and choose the profile icon> Preferences option.
- Next, go to the Proxies tab and choose the No proxy option.
- Once done, press the Apply > OK button and see if the error is fixed.
7] Clear the Dropbox cache
If there is large cached data accumulated in Dropbox, you might face errors and issues while uploading your files. Hence, you can try clearing the Dropbox cache and see if the error is fixed. Here’s how:
- First, close Dropbox and make sure it is not running in the background.
- Now, open the Run command box using Win+R and enter the below command in it:
- Next, in the opened dropbox.cache folder, delete all the files present.
- Once done, reopen Dropbox and see if you are able to upload your files or not.
8] Ensure that you have enough free space to upload new files
If you are still unable to upload files to Dropbox, it is likely that you are running out of free storage space. Hence, free up some space on Dropbox by deleting non-essential files.
In case you use Dropbox online, open your account in a web browser and select the All Files tab from the left-side panel.
After that, tick all the files that you want to delete and then click on the Delete button. Next, confirm the deletion of the files, and when done, try uploading new files to your Dropbox. Additionally, you can also clear your Deleted files section (trash bin).
You can also upgrade your plan to add more storage space to your Dropbox account. After upgrading your storage space, you should be able to upload new files without any issues.
If you want to add more storage space without paying for it, there are some free ways to expand your storage. Here are those methods:
- Finish Dropbox’s Get Started checklist tasks like downloading the Dropbox app, sharing a folder with colleagues, etc.
- Refer Dropbox to your friends to earn free storage space on Dropbox.
- Send your feedback as to why you love Dropbox and it will add extra space to your account.
You can open the dropbox.com/getspace page in your browser, select one of the available options, and follow the prompted instructions to add more storage to your Dropbox account.
I hope this helps.
Now read: Dropbox is not syncing or working on Windows.