I didn't want to talk about this on Wednesday because I was so upset about it, but the night before I defended my dissertation, I spent all night editing my PowerPoint slides. I've been using Dropbox for 4 years - I don't want to make the switch to Google Drive because I've acquired a lot of free Dropbox storage over the years...also, I'm lazy...
I have never had any issues with my Dropbox folder on my hard drive syncing with my Dropbox online folder. Once I was done editing my presentation, I saved it for the grillionth time and took it for granted that I'd be able to open the file once I arrived on campus for my defense...I was wrong...
About half an hour before my defense, I decided to look over my slides one more time, only to find that the latest copy of the presentation was nowhere to be found...I clicked the "show deleted files" option in Dropbox and it still didn't show up. I searched other folders for the file in case I accidentally saved it in another folder and couldn't find it.
Needless to say, I was really upset and I started sobbing and pounding the floor with my fists. Of course Dropbox had to fail on the most important day of my life. Rather than using the version of the presentation that I spent hours editing, I had to use the previous version :-/
Later that night, I checked my Dropbox folder on my home computer and the file was there, but it didn't have the green checkmark symbol next to the file name, indicated that the file did not indeed sync. I created a new PowerPoint file and a Word file to see if there was something wrong with that specific file causing it to not sync, but these new files didn't sync, either...I gave up and started drinking...
The next day, I decided to try restarting my computer (I have a Mac) to see if that would solve the problem. When my computer restarted, my presentation and the new files I created the night before synced up.
If you use Dropbox and you're working on a file that you know you'll need to open elsewhere, double check that the file name has the green checkmark next to it so you don't wind up freaking the fuck out before that presentation.