While the Dropbox client fully supports uploading and downloading symlinks, the public API does not allow creating symlinks on the server, only getting information about existing symlinks. Maestral is therefore limited to downloading symlinks from the server but cannot upload them. You will see a sync issue when trying to upload a newly created symlink from your local Dropbox folder.

Some background about why we do not simply follow symlinks:

In mid-2019 Dropbox changed how its client handles symlinks: It will no longer sync the symlink’s destination but rather upload the symlink file itself together with the information of where it points to. Symlinks are therefore now synced as what they actually are: files with metadata pointing to a destination.

This means that symlinks pointing to another file or folder outside of your Dropbox may be broken when synced to a different machine if the destination does not exist there.

Treating symlinks this way has the advantages of preserving folder structures with internal relative symlinks, for example some macOS app bundles.