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Mock Dropbox when developing your Dropbox app.
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fake_dropbox is a simple fake implementation of the Dropbox API written in Ruby using the Sinatra framework. It can be used to mock Dropbox when developing and testing applications that use Dropbox. There are no real authentication and users (you are always authenticated), files are stored on the local machine.

Can be used either as a standalone app listening on a port or intercept calls to the real Dropbox in Ruby apps.

It implements the following API calls from Dropbox API version 1 (some may be only partially implemented):

  • /files (GET)
  • /files_put
  • /files (POST)
  • /metadata
  • /media
  • /fileops/create_folder
  • /fileops/delete

/media returns working fake download URLs, though they don't actually expire. Also, fake_dropbox emulates a Dropbox account with Public folder access enabled, so requesting<uid>/path/file.ext will download /Public/path/file.ext without requiring authentication. (any string works as a UID, since /account/info is not implemented yet)

All the calls which are also present in Dropbox API version 0 should behave as they behave in the official Dropbox API when version is set to 0 (e.g. /files (POST) returns {"result": "winner!"} instead of file's metadata in version 0).

If you find it useful and want to add support for more features, go ahead ;)


Using RubyGems:

gem install fake_dropbox

To get the latest development version just clone the repository:

git clone git://
cd fake_dropbox
gem install bundler
bundle install

Then, if you want to install it as a gem:

rake install

How to use

Running the server

If you installed fake_dropbox as a gem, you should be able to run:

DROPBOX_DIR=/home/joe/somedir fake_dropbox [PORT]

You have to specify an environment variable DROPBOX_DIR which will point the server to the directory on which the fake API should operate. Additionally, you can specify a custom port (default is 4321).

If you cloned the repository and you don't want to install fake_dropbox as a gem, you can run it using rackup while in the fake_dropbox directory:

DROPBOX_DIR=/home/joe/somedir rackup

Intercepting requests in Ruby apps

You can also use this gem to intercept requests to Dropbox in your Ruby app, without modifying any of its code or specifying a custom host or port. This is achieved by using the WebMock library.

The class responsible for this is FakeDropbox::Glue. To intercept requests to the real Dropbox, just instantiate this class in your code:

fake_dropbox =

You can provide an optional argument to the constructor, pointing to the directory you want to use for your fake Dropbox:

fake_dropbox ='/home/joe/somedir')

If you don't provide it, a temporary directory will be created in the system's temporary path.


  • #dropbox_dir returns the fake Dropbox directory.
  • #empty! deletes everything in the dropbox_dir recursively. Even though it should work only if the dropbox_dir resides inside the system's temporary path, you should use it with caution.

A support file for Cucumber tests could look like this:

require 'fake_dropbox'

fake_dropbox =

After do


fake_dropbox supports a few configuration options that can be changed after initialization. They can be changed in two ways:

  • by setting FakeDropbox::Config.<option> when using inside a Ruby app,
  • by sending a POST request to /__config__ containing options and their values as parameters (use true and false strings as boolean equivalents).

The following options are available:

  • authorize_request_token, default: true
  • authorize_access_token, default: true
  • authorized, default: true, when set to false all API requests return 401 Unauthorized HTTP status
  • debug, default: DROPBOX_DEBUG environmental variable or false, if set to true reports all the API requests to STDIO (URL, HTTP headers and body).


Copyright © 2011 Juliusz Gonera. fake_dropbox is released under the MIT license, see LICENSE for details.

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