I have a soft symlink between the Documents folder on my main computer and a folder in Dropbox, say dbDocs. If I now edit a document, say thesis.tex, in dbDocs from another computer, will the symlink on my main computer see that thesis.tex has changed and sync this file back to Documents? Or will the symlink just overwrite the newly edited file in dbDocs with the corresponding file from Documents?

  • I'm not sure I got the question. Where is the actual folder and where's the symlink? May 8, 2013 at 14:41
  • symlinks do not sync - they are a pointer to another file, you need to make the question clearer
    – mmmmmm
    May 8, 2013 at 16:39

1 Answer 1


The quick answer is that if you open Documents/thesis.tex after editing it in your Dropbox folder on another computer, you will see the changes. As @Mark said in a comment, a symlink is simply a pointer to another location on your computer. If that other location has its contents changed, those changes will be visible when using the symlink in Documents, just as they would if you examined the file directly in the Dropbox folder.

  • Ok. So as the files in Documents are just pointers to dbDocs I'm just confusing myself with thinking about "the file on my main computer". This clarifies.
    – Holene
    May 8, 2013 at 17:21

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