Dropbox is one of my favorite cloud apps because of its incredible features and web interface.
But what if you want to take your Dropbox files with you on a flash drive? Or you’re using a computer where you don’t have administrator priviledges? That’s where DropboxPortableAHK comes in. Is it worth your time? Let’s find out!
Visit the DropboxPortableAHK website to download your portable installation.
Once you’ve extracted the zip file, run the DropboxPortableAHK.exe file to install the portable app. The wizard will walk you through configuring all necessary settings.
If you plan to put your portable Dropbox on a flash drive or other external drive, it’s best to install it locally first. Once your files have been downloaded from Dropbox’s server, then you can move your Dropbox folder to the external drive.
After making sure you have a valid internet connection, the next screen lets you configure your Dropbox folder location. This is where you choose the location to store your Dropbox folder.
If you want to put it on a flash drive or other external hard drive, you can choose that location now. However, it’s better to install it locally if you have a lot of files to download and then move the whole folder later.
Your entire installation is inside the DropboxPortableAHK folder. Inside that is where your configuration files and actual Dropbox folder are held.
Moving Dropbox Content
If you are moving from a standard Dropbox installation to a portable one, and your Dropbox files are already downloaded to your computer, you can choose the previous location so you don’t have to resync all your files. On the next screen, choose your previous location and it will take care of moving or copying your files for you.
You can also choose to use a previous Dropbox configuration, or just use the previous folder. If you are unsure, choose the previous folder.
Updates and Addons
On the next screen, you are given options for how you want to update DropboxPortableAHK. Once you’ve set up your update preferences, the next screen is addons.
There are extra features you can enable to configure your installation the way you want. This really comes in handy when you have multiple instances of DropboxPortableAHK and you want them to behave differently.
SyncAndGo allows you to run and sync Dropbox and then close the app afterwards. You can even encrypt your Dropbox configuration settings with a password.
DropboxPortableAHK lets you configure user applications that run before and after starting Dropbox. For example, you can encrypt your Dropbox files inside a TrueCrypt container and set the app to run TrueCrypt before and after running Dropbox.
Another example would be if you want to scan your files with a malware program, or if you have an automated organizer for media files.
After configuring all the settings, you most likely need to download the Dropbox application files. The wizard will tell you if you do, and they download for you with a click of the button.
You can also choose a custom Dropbox icon with the newest version of DropboxPortableAHK, allowing you to easily tell installations apart.
Then you start the Dropbox setup. The script configures everything and after a few seconds, you’re asked to login or create a Dropbox account. You’ll go through the standard Dropbox wizard. Configure the location of the Dropbox to point to your portable folder. In my case, it would be C:\Users\Sydney\DropboxPortableAHK\Dropbox.
After you’ve installed everything, you can start and exit your DropboxPortableAHK app whenever you like. Simply run the DropboxPortableAHK.exe file and it will load your Dropbox installation.
When you want to exit, you right-click on your specific Dropbox installation in the taskbar and choose Exit. Your installation closes, and if it’s on a flash drive, you can take your drive and portable Dropbox with you.
Moving Your Installation
If you want to move your installation to an external drive, simply move your entire DropboxPortableAHK folder to a different location. As long as you take that whole folder, your configuration files and your Dropbox folder will be intact. You can run the application from your new location without a hiccup.
One of the best things about DropboxPortableAHK is that you can install multiple instances of this app to connect to different Dropbox accounts. On my work computer, I have a work Dropbox that I share with my colleagues, and I also have two portable Dropbox folders setup for my personal use. This way I still have access to all my files, but I can keep things separate.
Here I’ve got three different installations of DropboxPortableAHK running: one for work, and two for personal use.
The developer, Nick, is active in maintaining and upgrading this free app, and there is a support forum for any issues you may have. I’ve been successfully using this program for a few months without any issues. I typically run three instances at a time and everything has worked properly.
Dropbox is an incredible app allowing you easy access to your files on multiple computers.
DropboxPortableAHK takes it a step further and allows you to run multiple instances of Dropbox and take them with you on external drives. This app is free and well supported, and easy to use.