I have a 27" iMac (Snow Leopard) that has four accounts. Two admins (my wife and I) and two kids. With one of the kids being a restricted account (locked down for 8 year old).

Anyway, I also have a MBP that I use for development. 100% of my code is in my DropBox folder. That folder is also on the iMac. So when I update my code, the changes get synced to the iMac.

However, there are many problems. First, the DropBox location on the iMac is in the Shared folder. But I STILL get permission problems with the other accounts. Even the other admin account. I have gone in and told the OS to give read/write permissions (and all sub folders) to all accounts in the DropBox folder. Still doesn't work.

I constantly get access denied on the other accounts accessing that folder. My guess is because I am creating the file on my MBP and sending over with MY account.

Should I create the same users on my MBP and give them access? That seems ridiculous.

Any other suggestions?

EDIT By DropBox, I mean the SERVICE DropBox. I want the DropBox folder to be read/write for all users because we also use it for photos, etc.

  • Are you talking about the service Dropbox or about the "Drop Box" folder in the user folder?
    – bot47
    Jul 13, 2012 at 21:07
  • The service. DropBox the company.
    – cbmeeks
    Jul 25, 2012 at 14:18
  • OK, next time please don't write it CamelCase but Titlecase as it's the official spelling.
    – bot47
    Jul 25, 2012 at 15:35
  • Figure this one out yet? I'm having a similar issue...
    – radven
    Nov 4, 2012 at 5:55

3 Answers 3


The concept behind having a drop box is write Only for others and read only for the owner of the Dropbox (the user in this case). So If you are looking to have a shared folder then try creating a new folder in your user's public folder or on your Macintosh HD and share it. Let us know if you find problems with this approach.

My understanding of the question is you are looking for a common folder between your MBP and iMac and not about applying proper share permissions on the DropBox folder.


I would want to know if you are logged in with multiple accounts at the same time and using the fast user switching? If so, one login may be 'holding' onto permissions of the dropbox folder. It would do this so the changes that are made by one account can't effect the changes in progress on another account. This would be what the dropbox agent that runs in the background is doing. Try logging into only one account and make sure the others are not running.


It is not likely a permissions problem, its a file locking problem. Another user on your Mac may have a finder window looking at your Dropbox folder, which locks the files. OS X incorrectly reports this error as inadequate permissions, but it really a lock file. See this article for more on this error: Odd Permissions Issues on Windows Share

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