How to setup selective-sync with insync-headless?


I’m using insync headless (my box doesn’t have window manager), but can’t figure out how to select a subset of folders to sync. When I first set it up, it started syncing dumping GB’s from my gdrive onto the NFS sync folder I setup. I want to sync just one folder from my gdrive.

I tried without success:
nsync-headless manage_selective_sync help (says no help available)
insync-headless manage_selective_sync

Insync-portable selective sync, but tries to download everything

@Yaroslav_Bulatov: I think there was a typo in your command somewhere which caused the help message to not appear. Running insync-headless manage_selective_sync -h should show

$ insync-headless manage_selective_sync -h
insync-headless manage_selective_sync EMAIL

Manage selective sync settings of account through a curses interface

This is also available through Insync’s man page: man insync-headless.

In your case please try running the command while passing the email address of the account you added to Insync as an argument.


That help string just says “Manage selective sync settings of account through a curses interface” and doesn’t specify how to use the command.

IE I tried
insync-headless manage_selective_sync

And it gives
Invalid number of arguments for manage_selective_sync

Where are the arguments documented?


if I add some random string in place of arguments, it starts, but the window is empty, ie

, so I can’t figure out how to select the folders to exclude from syncing

Meanwhile, if I look at the folder I setup for syncing, I see a bunch of directories in there that insync put there


@Yaroslav_Bulatov: The EMAIL part after “insync-headless manage_selective_sync” means that you need to pass the email address of the account you added to Insync as an argument. So if for example your email address is, the form of the command should be insync-headless manage_selective_sync Apologies if this was unclear.


This is still unclear.

Insync please start to post clear info to us noobs, we are having to read between the lines all of the time.

In this case post clear instructions on how to use manage_selective_sync

Above are you talking about my synchronised account email address or the shared persons email address. It is ambiguous.


YES, where are the arguments documented?
OK so we use an email address, who’s email.
and if I use the email of the person sharing with me, it does nothing!

This subject needs to be better documented.
Getting very frustrated with insync

For example lets say my email is
and the sharers email is

This is the command as I understand it, based on the aweful documentation:
$ insync-headless accept_all_new_shares

And I get a return within terminal of: has not been added to Insync.

Which fills me with no joy.


Hi @Jamie_Browning!

For the arguments, you may take a look at the docs shown when running man insync-headless.

As for the second, you need to run insync-headless accept_all_new_shares [your email], not the sharer’s.

Thank you for your honest feedback; we appreciate it and it helps us determine how we can improve on our product and support. :slight_smile: Please let me know if you have any other questions!


So You never improved on this documentation.
It is still poor.

Why do we, as your customer, continue to help you realise your faults when you are not willing to improve.

We just need reasonable documentation!