All local data removed by unlinking service

Unlinking an SFTP server from odrive removed all client data, without any kind of warning. I was working on the server in the meanwhile and lost a good deal of data before I noticed what happened. Anybody care to explain the logic behind this?

My apologies for running into this.

Did you unlink the service while still uploading data to it? When you unlink a service, it ceases to exist in the odrive realm. The client sees this and removes the now invalid link folder from its view.

The original thinking was that this was an intentional action from the user. The user no longer wants this link around. For example, you’ve lost control of a client machine and you unlink your sources to prevent someone else from accessing the data in those links.

In your case the end result was obviously not expected and detrimental. I will discuss this scenario with the team and see if we can identify ways to improve this flow. As a start, I can see where a notification during unlink at least calls attention to what the results, or potential results, of the action will be.


I was moving the server to another machine, and assumed that I would upload again from the client. Instead it was all gone… I ended trying to fish the deleted files from the disk.

I see your intention, but I think not warning the user about deletion is a big design flaw. Protecting the data should be your first concern. Please consider to review all your code for anything similar. I even suggest double confirmation!


What is the “correct” way in odrive to break a link between a cloud provider and local storage in a way that won’t delete the local data?

Since Amazon changed storage plan pricing I wan to just quit storing data on Amazon cloud drive. I don’t want any data deleted on any of my clients. How can I do this?


Hi @steve.davies.iphone,
You should close odrive and then move the Amazon Drive folder to another location, outside of odrive’s view. odrive will think you have deleted that folder at that point. You can then unlink the drive from your odrive account.

Thanks for the weekend reply.

Followup. It’s been a while since I set up this particular sync. I don’t remember exactly what I ddi. From the interface, I only see one folder that is set to “sync”. I vaguely remember I directly uploaded some content to the Amazon drive as well as setting up the sync folder.

Question: It is safe to unlink a folder that is just a placeholder? By safe, I mean data on the client disk won’t be deleted. Technically, there is no data in the placeholder directory but I’m worried there may be a link of some kind to the place on the disk where the data does reside and from which the data was uploaded.

Followup #2. I found the folder in question. I did not directly upload the files. I created a sync on a folder outside the odrive root directory.

How can I break the direct link to this directory without causing local client deletion?


Hi @steve.davies.iphone,
It sounds like it is a “sync to odrive” folder. In that case you can just right-click on that folder and select “Remove sync”. This will remove the sync relationship to that external folder and it will be a normal folder again.

Keep in mind that if you still have placeholders in that folder they will not be usable after you remove the sync relationship. If you want those files locally (they will still be in the cloud), you will want to download them before removing the sync relationship.


I really appreciate the exceptional support in this forum. Thanks.

Better documentation of sync functions would be a big help.

Prior to each question I searched the odrive documentation. For example, I wondered what remove sync would do. A search for “remove sync” turned up sync options with no mention of remove anywhere on the page. I still don’t know if the info is in the doc or not.

Some UI feedback on operations that will delete data would be very helpful.
A seemingly benign operation like “Unlink” will delete data. That’s not intuitive or obvious. Operations that delete data should provide a warning and confirmation.

Hi @steve.davies.iphone,
You are right. There was an image and a mention of a right-click menu option, but it didn’t call it out specifically, for some reason. I have added my notes above to the documentation for better clarity.

As for unlink, there is a warning that it will remove the link from odrive, but it could be more explicit on what the implications of that are on the local client. I will mention this to the product team again, and ask for an adjustment there.

I executed the “remove sync” and that worked just as you described. (this folder was not under the odrive directory)

When I tried to make a directory disappear behind odrive’s back as you suggested, odrive did detect the directory as missing and wants to sync the delete to the cloud. Clicking on the directory yields three options: cancel, sync, recover.

If I choose “recover” what will happen: leave the directory in the cloud and leave the client directory deleted OR download the cloud directory to my client to stay synced?

If I choose sync, I assume it will delete the cloud copy, which I want to keep. My mission is to break the syncing link and just leave all the data in place. (this folder was under the odrive directory)

Hi @steve.davies.iphone,
At this point you can unlink from the odrive web client, which will remove the linked folder from your odrive client and that trashed item should be cancelled out, keeping everything in the cloud as it is.


By the way, what does the recover option do? I searched the documentation earlier and found it mentioned as an option but no explanation of what it does.

Hi @steve.davies.iphone,
Recover will “recover” the file/folder by bringing it back as a placeholder and canceling the delete directive.