Keep a local copy of files on my Mac?

I use Cryptomator on my MacBook to keep files on iCloud encrypted. What I am looking for is a way to keep an exact local copy of all the files on my Mac at all times for when I don’t have internet access.

Hoping that way when ever I add a file to the local drive it syncs right up thru the app and is now in both locations?


Im not sure if I understand your question right. But the iCloud syn is exactly what you are looking for. So if you place your vault inside an iCloud synced folder, you can always open the vault (no matter if you are connected to the internet), and if you have an Internet connection and your iCloud client running, the encrypted vault files will be synced to you iCloud storage.
Please note that Cryptomator does not sync anything. It does the encryption.

I am syncing the Cryptomator files on iCloud. But that is the only place I see them. When I drop a file on the virtual drive that Cryptomator creates, the file goes to iCloud but that file is only in the cloud now. If I open it on another device and make a change to it that change does not sync back to the original file on the laptop. So I’m forced to maintain a local copy of all files that I must manually update by dragging the updated file from iCloud to the laptop. My hope was to have a local folder that syncs to the Cryptomator drive so any changes I make on any device always syncs back to the laptop and the files live on the laptop as well as in the cloud.

It should work this way, though.

If you change a file in the vault, the corresponding ciphertext file in iCloud will update as well. iCloud should see the new modification date and start syncing.

You can create a vault that only contains one single ~ 2MB file (like a screenshot). In the ciphertext dir you should then be able to recognize this file by its size. Keep an eye on the modification date and see if it syncs correctly. Maybe iCloud just needs some time.

If I open a file and change it Or create a file on my iPhone It changes on the cloud but the original file on my Mac is not changed because the only place that file lives is in the cloud, there is no local version that ends up on my Macs internal HD. Cloud files are cloud files as far as I can get it working. No actual local files live on my Mac. Disconnect from the internet or close Cryptomator and all files vanish on my Mac.

I’m playing around with r/sync to see if I can create a watch folder that monitors iCloud and copies any changed file to my local drive.

Im using iCloud as well and this ist not how it works for me. All iCloud files are synced via the iCloud client to all my devices. If I change a file on device A (no matter if the file is in a Cryptomator vault or not), then it will be updated on all other devices, as soon as the iCloud sync on the other devices is finished. If I a offline, the files are still available locally (of course they do not sync then with the online stored file version). This is how all the online storages that I use work (OneDrive, iCloud, googledrive, Dropbox)

That screenshot looks suspicious. Why isn’t there a logo on the Cryptomator directory…?

@tobihagemann any idea? Is it possible this is not the correct dir, created by our apps?

If you’re using Cryptomator for iOS and access vaults via iCloud Drive, you should have a “special” Cryptomator folder in iCloud Drive that indeed should have the Cryptomator app icon.


The reason is that the iOS app (unlike to macOS app) is unable to access the “complete” iCloud Drive due to restrictions by Apple. If you’d like to sync between macOS und iOS via iCloud Drive, you should use this “special” Cryptomator folder.

I’m not sure what is going on then. That is the folder that the app created on iCloud. The files on iCloud are always in sync I just don’t have a local copy. The Cryptomator “drive” on my desktop is the only place I see the files. So no internet then no drive so no files.

This is how iCloud Drive looks. Photos in order of drilling down.

That looks good to me.
So the question is: why are your iCloud files only available on you Mac when you are online.
Is it possible that you have the option „ Optimise storage“ enabled in iCloud client preferences?
This will enable a files on demand function.
If you have enabled it, disable it please if you want have your iCloud files always local as well.

Nope it is set to download all files. Now I do have use iCloud for desktop and documents folder turned off since I don’t store anything in there, only in the Cryptomator folder. Could that be the issue. I really was not a fan of my documents and desktop being in the cloud. The goal was to never have any unencrypted files go to the cloud.

OK, I have everything working properly now. I deleted and recreated the vault on iCloud and now everything syncs properly between my Mac and the cloud. I have had all kinds of issues with iCloud ever since I went to Catalina. I had 1000’s of pictures vanish and music not uploading. The fix for each issue was to start that service over from scratch. I will chalk this up to another bug from the OS upgrade.