If you are a Mac user, and you happen to have looked at local folders using the terminal, you might have noticed, that a file foo.txt is there BUT also ._foo.txt. That is considered a "ghost file", something that Spotlight uses for indexing, as far as I know - just like .DS_Store.

I work across platforms - Windows, Mac, Ubuntu - and I want to get rid of these ghost files, since they pollute the explorer window on the other platforms quite a lot.

In order to delete these ghost files, I'd use:

$ find $DROPBOX_PATH -name "._*" -delete

...but of course, as soon as I re-visit the folder, a flood of these ghost files pop up once again...

So, how can I prevent these ghost files to be uploaded?

  • ._ files shouldn't exist under a HFS volume. If they do, your file system may be corrupt. – At0mic Oct 20 '15 at 13:51
  • @IronCraftMan My Dropbox folder is put on a separate partition, FAT32, 20GB of total size. – Ingwie Phoenix Oct 20 '15 at 14:14
  • that's your problem. Finder will place those on any drive, since they contain the Resource Fork of the file, which FAT doesn't support. – At0mic Oct 20 '15 at 17:01
  • @IronCraftMan I see. So you say, that as long as my Dropbox folder is hosted on Fat32, I won't be able to get rid of the ghost files - i mean, Resource Forks? I just do not want Dropbox to upload all of them - is there no way to tell it to globally ignore ._* files? – Ingwie Phoenix Oct 20 '15 at 21:08
  • Correct. I don't believe there is a way to block certain files on Dropbox, but you can suggest it to Dropbox – At0mic Oct 20 '15 at 21:23

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