You are hereRunning Dropbox as a Service on Windows Server
Running Dropbox as a Service on Windows Server
If you need to run Dropbox as a service, you need to convince Windows Server to run it as a service. That's easy enough using the old "srvany.exe" toolkit program that let's you run "any" program as a service.
Basically, you will install dropbox, grab srvany.exe, create a service entry, add a registry setting, start the service, then you're up and running.
Here are the details...
- Download and install the Windows Server 2003 Resource Toolkit, which was here when I wrote this.
- Download Dropbox for your system.
- Most of the time with a server, if you are syncing Dropbox, you're doing it as a backup for your shares. If you are doing that, you need to point the dropbox base folder to there. When you install dropbox, you can change the base location for the Dropbox files, so change it to point to your shares. Note that a "dropbox" folder will be created there, then your shared folders should be under that folder. So, let's say I want my quickbooks and files folders to be shared to users and to sync with dropbox. I would create a folder called c:\shares, then point dropbox there during install. It will create c:\shares\dropbox. After installation, move your shares under there so you end up with c:\shares\dropbox\quickbooks and c:\shares\dropbox\files. When you do, you'll have everything in those folders syncing to dropbox! Install dropbox, enter your user and password, point to the correct location, and finish the install. When you're ready to sync, move or make your shares under the dropbox folder and they will sync. Note: If you move shared folders under Windows Server, the share will break and you need to re-share it.
- Change Dropbox preferences by unchecking "Show desktop notifications" and "Start Dropbox on system startup". We do this because we don't want the user interface to start up.
- Exit all the way out of Dropbox. Click exit in the icon in the taskbar.
- Execute this on the command prompt as administrator:
sc create Dropbox binPath= "C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Resource Kits\Tools\srvany.exe" DisplayName= "Dropbox Service"
If the service was created successfully, you will receive message:
[SC] CreateService SUCCESS
- Run services.msc
- Click properties on Dropbox service.
- Click on "Log On".
- Click on "This account" and select Administrator. Set the appropriate password.
- Set startup type to Automatic.
- Click OK.
- Don't start the service, yet!
- Run regedit
- Navigate to:
(This was added when we ran the SC command above.)
- Create a new key: Parameters
- Add a new string value: Application of type REG_SZ and set the value to the path to the dropbox.exe binary, something like this:
- Close regedit.
- Run services.msc and start the Dropbox service.
That should do it. You can monitor the sync progress by opening the dropbox website and checking the Events option. It should show you regular updates as you change files.
Note that if you reboot the server, it is always a good idea to make sure the service restarted correctly and syncing is still happening. I've had times where it didn't start the service, but there was no error or notification.
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