About Box Sync

The Sync feature for Box allows you to keep files synchronized between your desktop and your Box account. This is especially useful if you use an application that needs direct access to the files locally (i.e., linked files, or collections of data files), or if you have files that you work on frequently or wish to access offline. You can also use Box Sync as a migration tool to transfer data to Box.

If you use Box to work with sensitive data, see the warnings in Protecting sensitive data in Box before using Box Sync.

On this page:

Installing Box Sync

To install Box Sync:

  1. Log into your IU Box account.
  2. Click your name in the upper right, and select Get Box Sync from the drop-down list. (If you don't see the Box Sync option, contact your campus Support Center.)
  3. Follow the prompts to download and install Box Sync.
    Box Sync will create a folder on your computer called Box Sync. Don't rename this folder; if you do, Box will re-create it and duplicate the synced files. You can select an alternate location for your Box Sync folder, but only immediately after installing Sync. For instructions, see Can A User Select the Box Sync Folder Location?
  4. After installing Box Sync, log into the Box Sync client.
  5. In the "Email" box, enter your IU email address. Click Use Single Sign-on (SSO).

Using Box Sync to sync files

Box Sync is best suited for quick local or offline access to frequently used files, or situations where an application needs simultaneous access to multiple files in a folder. To sync folders to your computer:

  1. Open Box in a browser, and navigate to the folder or subfolder you want to sync.
  2. Right-click the folder, or click the ellipsis (...) to the right of its name.
  3. Navigate to Properties and select Sync to Computer.

In Box, it's best to keep files in folders. If you put any individual files in your computer's Box Sync folder, Box will sync those files at the top level of your Box account. For ease of file management, either create a private folder in the top level of your Box account, sync it, and then put the files there, or move the loose files into folders after syncing them.

  • Do not sync all folders within your Box account. Your Box account has an unlimited quota, and your computer has finite resources. Syncing all folders may lead to reduced computer performance.
  • Box does not sync files by default; you'll need to log into Box on the web and indicate which folders or subfolders you wish to sync.
  • You must have Editor permissions or above on a collaboration folder in Box to sync its contents to your desktop.
  • While the act of syncing a folder is logged, the act of accessing content within the folder through Box Sync without making changes is not logged. If you need to log each time a file in your folder is accessed by a collaborator, set the access level for each collaborator to no higher than Viewer Uploader; for more, see Permission levels in Sharing files on Box.

Migrating files with Box Sync

You can use Box Sync to migrate content on your computer to Box. Because Box Sync keeps a local copy of the data while it syncs, it will take up space on your computer. If you have a large amount of data to move, or if you have limited space on your computer, UITS recommends uploading the content in manageable chunks by following the steps below. If you have less data, you only need to follow steps 1 through 3.

  1. Move the content to be migrated into your Box Sync folder. Wait for the content to finish syncing to Box.
  2. Confirm that all the files and folders are in Box. In Box's web client, visually check the files or look for the file count listed by each folder to ensure it matches the source.
  3. Unsync the content. In Box's web client, next to the content, click the ellipsis (...), select Properties, and choose Unsync. This keeps the copy in Box while removing it from your computer's Box Sync folder.
    If you delete content from your computer's Box Sync folder, it will also be deleted from Box.

    Unsyncing content also frees up space on your computer. Once the content disappears from your computer's Box Sync folder, you can use the freed space to migrate additional files and folders.

  4. Repeat until all content chunks have been uploaded.

For details about Box Sync, including information on unsupported file types, see the Box Sync menu in the Box Community site; also, see Get Started with Box Sync and the Box Sync training video.

This is document bcbk in the Knowledge Base.
Last modified on 2016-05-05 00:00:00.

  • Fill out this form to submit your issue to the UITS Support Center.
  • Please note that you must be affiliated with Indiana University to receive support.
  • All fields are required.

Please provide your IU email address. If you currently have a problem receiving email at your IU account, enter an alternate email address.

  • Fill out this form to submit your comment to the IU Knowledge Base.
  • If you are affiliated with Indiana University and need help with a computing problem, please use the I need help with a computing problem section above, or contact your campus Support Center.

Please provide your IU email address. If you currently have a problem receiving email at your IU account, enter an alternate email address.