Monday, November 1, 2010

Install Dropbox on KDE desktops

Dropbox is a popular and great cloud based application, which allows you to synchronize files across different computers. I use it extensively, not only because it allows me to work with a single version of each file, but also because those files are always available, secure and they are virtually impossible to lose in a potential computer crash

As you may imagine, I spend quite some time installing new distros for my own tests or reviews. I have learnt that Dropbox is extremely handy for such activity. I use it to store my scripts, icon themes, wallpapers, emerald themes, etc., so I just need to synch the computer with Dropbox, as opposed to searching for files, downloading them, etc.


Unfortunately for KDE users, Dropbox is only available for Ubuntu and Fedora (GNOME), with a somewhat heavy Nautilus dependency. As a result, installing the application on KDE may prove tricky and frustrating. After researching a bit on the matter (and overcoming a few challenges), I decided to put together a brief article about it.


Let's start by downloading and extracting files. First, pick your architecture and click on the corresponding link below.

If you are using one of the popular browsers available, chances are the file will be downloaded under ~/Downloads/. Once the download is complete, double click on the tar file and extract all files to your home folder. (Note that the folder extracted is hidden by default, so don't worry if you don't see right away!)


To start Dropbox, open Dolphin and browse to the ~/.dropbox-dist folder (use alt + '.' without the quotes to view hidden files and folders). Right click on the file dropbox and change its properties so that it becomes executable. Double click on it and the application will start .

Now, that's all cool, but it's only good for one use. In order to get Dropbox to start every time we start a new session, open KDE system settings > System Administration > Startup and Shutdown and then enter the Autostart section. Click on Add Program and select ~/.dropbox-dist/dropbox.

You should now get dropbox running every time you start a new session.

Dropbox on Kubuntu 10.10!

Happy Dropboxing!


  1. You should have a look at the kfilebox project:

    1. While this is ok for users of current Kubuntu (and other .deb based) systems, users of .rpm based distros (such as my awesome Fedora Scientific KDE spin) have been relegated to the "old" folder since at least the time of this article in 2010. Worse even, the author of the app has now quit the project, citing a threatening, unfriendly type territorial-marking cease-and-desist email sent by the Dropbox corporate person as the reason. Looks like he's taking his volunteer-donation-marbles and going home. Nice job Dropbox!

      I wonder if they are running that service on linux racks?

  2. Thanks for that reference!

    I see that the page requirements mention KDE 4.4.x. My understanding is that it meant KDE 4.4.x OR HIGHER?

    Can you clarify and confirm if that is the case?

  3. Yes, that's the case. It works perfectly on KDE 4.5.2 also.

  4. There's also a Dropbox Service Menu at

  5. Thanks a lot for all the information.
    I accidentally stumble Dropbox while testing Linux Live CDs.
    I was wondering what is it?

    Yes it is there in Ubuntu and Fedora (new versions) and PClinux new versions too.

    Unfortunately, PClinux (in the same computer) does not synchronize well with Dropbox.

    With little bit of hassle I got it running on SuSe too.

    I use Dropbox for depositing Linux Images.

    It saves download time.Painfully slow here.

    I download the iso image and Dropbox synchronizes it for me.

    This is clod computing at its best!

    We have not even started the Journey!

  6. Thanks for sharing the solution.

  7. Copy is a new cloud service that is amazing! Dropbox conventionally only offers 2gb of storage, to say the least is hardly nothing for your videos / mp3 files. Copy provides 15 gb free on registration, and you can get an additional 5GB by registering through this link!

    Total of 20gb registering through this link: