Software applications Tips and Tricks

Quick Tip – Restoring The Dropbox Indicator


In recent updates the Dropbox indicator has quit working. Dropbox still works fine, and you can check the status from terminal. It’s just not as convenient as using the indicator, so a lot of elementary users are asking how to get the indicator back.  Most advice I’ve seen on the net says to either downgrade Dropbox or wait. The next  update is a big one with a new QT based interface and a fix for the missing indicator, but waiting sucks. The guys over on entornsgnulinux didn’t want to wait or downgrade, so they figured out how to make it work now.  Unfortunately, the instructions aren’t in English, so here’s a quick translation.


  • Open up Files and go to your home folder.
  • Right click and choose show hidden files.
  • Look for a file named .xsessionrc
  • If you have it the open it in Scratch.
  • If you don’t have it then right click and choose create new file > empty file, and name it .xsessionrc then open it in Scratch


  • Paste in


  • Close .xsessionrc
  • Open the terminal and run the following commands one at a time.
dropbox stop
rm .dropbox-dist
rm -R .dropbox-dist
sudo rm -R /usr/bin/.dropbox-dist/
sudo rm -R /var/lib/dropbox/.dropbox-dist
dropbox start -i

Don’t worry if it fails to remove something that didn’t exists. There are a couple of ways you could have installed Dropbox and I included commands to address the most common install locations. Once you run the last command Dropbox will reinstall the indicator. It’s not affecting any of the content in your Dropbox. Just let it finish then log out. When you log back in you should see the indicator.




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  • Hi, thank you so much for your post.
    I’ve installed dropbox using .deb from:
    -> I didn’t have .xsessionrc so i created it and writed down: export DROPBOX_USE_LIBAPPINDICATOR=1
    -> I did:
    dropbox stop
    rm -R .dropbox-dist
    (i have no more folders thand .dropbox-dist and .drobox)
    dropbox start
    -> It downloaded dropbox.
    -> Logout and Login
    And nothing appear in the super-wingpanel, not even applications launcher. Just the name of the app windows is focused (i have indicator-appmenu)
    Solution: Remove .xsessionrc and dropbox. Reinstall dropbox.
    Still without dropbox indicator.


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