We have a CartoDB Coronelli account with 300MB of spare space.

I need to get a shapefile loaded that is 85MB in its .zip package. The file is sitting in a publicly accessible dropbox.

1: When I try to connect via Dropbox, the .zip file is simply not shown. I can't locate it via the little file browser modal window that CartoDB provides.

2: When I feed the Dropbox share/download link to the File Upload>URL field element, CartoDB thinks about it for 10secs and then reports that there was an error decompressing the archive.

How do I get my shapefile into CartoDB?

  • How big are the files uncompressed? Also, it might be a good question for CartoDB help!
    – djq
    Dec 19, 2014 at 23:13
  • The files are bigger uncompressed (eg, 85MB goes to 135MB). That's a pretty normal thing: what are you thinking in terms of an angle here? AFAIK, thisis CartoDB help, right? Dec 20, 2014 at 13:00

1 Answer 1


Dropbox doesn't assume .zip files are documents, and CartoDB uses the Documents API from Dropbox, so you'd need to use Google Drive instead or a direct link.

The issue you're having with the direct link is probably being caused because the link is not really a direct link to the file but a link to an HTML page. CartoDB therefore downloads this HTML file with the name of your zip (i.e. file.zip) and it raises an error when it tries to decompress an HTML file.

  • Thanks for the clues as to how CartoDB is looking at Dropbox. I'm not entirely sure why you are having trouble with Dropbox zip files: CartoDB requires ESRI shapefiles to be packed into their .zip format, and the Dropbox link is certianly not a link to an HTML page. I can use a Dropbox link in a command shell to wget, for example...no trouble at all. Dec 22, 2014 at 1:05

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