Opening files from the Dropbox app seems to always result in a 'Permanent Failure' message. I see that some of the progress bar fills before the error appears. In the past I used Dropbox to view many file types, including JPG, TXT and PDF.

I am googling the problem but I don't see anything specific in the results. I'm wondering if it is due to having too full of an SD card. I will test that shortly.

Device: HTC Incredible (Android 2.3.4), App version: 2.0.1

  • 2
    Have you done the obvious: cleared cache, cleared data, force stop the app?
    – ale
    Feb 2, 2012 at 2:00
  • I have not tried those. Menu | Settings shows that the cache is 0.
    – gary
    Feb 2, 2012 at 2:18
  • 1
    Embarrassingly enough, 1GB of hidden files on the SD card was part of the problem. I had seen low space messages recently, so that's why the SD card was on my mind as a possible cause...
    – gary
    Feb 2, 2012 at 2:22

6 Answers 6


I fixed this by removing data from the SD card. It was nearly full. Freeing up ~1GB of the card solved the problem. It's likely that the application uses some SD card space to open files.


I had the same problem (after the latest update to Dropbox 2.3.8, the other day), however I had 8gb memory left (and some 600mb internal).

I had to uninstall the whole app to make Dropbox work again. With the following steps:

  1. Clear cache and remove data
  2. Uninstall the app
  3. Restart the phone
  4. Reinstall the app
  5. Files can be opened again...

I also tried to locate the "com.dropbox.android"-folder per the information at the following page (http://www.reddit.com/r/Nexus7/comments/19i7bs/dropbox_permanent_failure/), but that was after I had uninstalled the application and I couldn't find the folder (which seems logic).

I am running a HTC Desire Z with Android OS 2.3.3.

Hope this helps!


I resolved this issue by reinstalling the app, but now that I think about it, this might have been caused by the fact that I had changed my password (using the web interface) but never told by phone app the new password.


I had the same problem. It was solved after I unlinked my device from Dropbox (in Dropbox Settings) and then re-linked it.


I had the same message but discovered it was because I was connected to a secure wifi network which didn't like me accessing files from the dropbox app on my HTC one.


Disconnected from the wifi and used my 3G on my phone.


I had the same problem and I just cleared the cache and it worked. You can do this in Settings → Apps → Clear cache

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