Deploy the new OneDrive sync client in an enterprise environment

Last updated: January 2018

This article is for IT administrators planning to deploy the new OneDrive sync client to their OneDrive for Business users in work or school environments. To install the OneDrive sync client for yourself, download it and read the Get started article.

In this article:

Software requirements

The OneDrive sync client (OneDrive.exe) is supported on:

The OneDrive sync client doesn't yet support on-premises instances of OneDrive for Business (when your organization doesn't subscribe to Office 365). For more information about the restrictions and limitations of the OneDrive sync client, see Restrictions and limitations when you sync files and folders using the new OneDrive sync client.


When users set up OneDrive sync client, it downloads everything in their OneDrive. Large numbers of file transfers can adversely impact your network performance. We recommend using a phased rollout to avoid performances issues when deploying to a large number of users.

Some additional things you might want to consider are:

  • Identify potential bottlenecks early – Consider making special considerations for groups of users who have a large number of large files. For example, video department users may have a large number of large video files that they will need to sync to OneDrive. You might consider asking them to sync their files at a time when network traffic is low.

  • Monitor performance – If you're doing a phased rollout, monitor network performance levels with your first rollout. You can use that information to help adjust the next set of rollouts accordingly.

  • Communicate the rollout to users – Make sure that your users clearly understand what is expected of them to keep your deployment plan on schedule. Before the rollout begins, you might want to communicate to them what is required when they see OneDrive Setup and how to get help if they encounter a problem.

Overview of the deployment process

There are three steps in the process:

  1. Install OneDrive.exe on your users' computers.

  2. Start OneDrive processes and optionally prompt users to sign in with their work or school account.

  3. Set your update ring (optional).

Important: If your users are currently using the OneDrive for Business sync client (Groove.exe), and you want to move them to the OneDrive sync client, see Transition from the previous OneDrive for Business sync client before proceeding.

Step 1: Install OneDrive.exe

For the most part, you can deploy the new OneDrive for Business sync client like you would traditionally install applications on devices in your organization. If you're deploying to a large number of users, having familiarity with enterprise deployment tools such as System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) to deploy .exe files and modify local system registries will be helpful.

Check if users already have the OneDrive sync client

If the computers in your organization are running Windows 10, they already have the new sync client installed. If the computers have Office 2016 or Office 2013 (Home & Student, Home & Business, Professional, Personal, Home, or University) installed, they might also have the new sync client. Office is installed per machine, whereas OneDrive needs to be installed per user. If you plan on deploying Office to your organization, you will need to deploy OneDrive.exe separately for additional users on individual machines.

Deploy any administrative settings

To set registry keys on computers in your domain, install OneDrive and copy the OneDrive.admx and OneDrive.adml files from %localappdata%\Microsoft\OneDrive\BuildNumber\adm\ to your Group Policy central store. For more info, see Use Group Policy to control OneDrive sync client settings

Use System Center Configuration Manager to deploy the OneDrive sync client

To deploy through System Center Configuration Manager, you can save the OneDriveSetup.exe installer for Windows to a local network share. Download the OneDriveSetup.exe installer for Windows. Learn more about application management in Configuration Manager.

Tip: Try the sample SCCM package. Just update the OneDrive.exe path and the application owner.

To install the OneDrive sync client on Windows, run the following command using System Center Configuration Manager:

Execute <pathToExecutable>\OneDriveSetup.exe /silent

(where pathToExecutable is a location on the local computer or an accessible network share).


  • This command must be run at user logon and using Administrator permissions. It must be run for each user on a machine.

  • If you run the command with no command line parameter, users will see the installation status. After installation, OneDriveSetup.exe will automatically execute OneDrive.exe and display OneDrive Setup to users. If you run the command with the /silent parameter, OneDrive.exe will be installed transparently and OneDrive Setup won't appear. You'll need to run OneDrive.exe with an additional command. If you want to control the launch of OneDrive across your organization, we recommend using the /silent parameter.

The installer will install the OneDrive executable file under %localappdata%\Microsoft\OneDrive.

Deploy the RMS client to enable syncing IRM-protected files

The new OneDrive sync client for Windows now supports syncing IRM-protected SharePoint document libraries and OneDrive locations. To create a seamless IRM sync experience for your users, deploy the latest Rights Management Service (RMS) client to your users' computers.

To silently install the client on computers, use the /qn switch as part of the command-line options of the Microsoft Windows Installer Tool (Msiexec.exe). For example, the following command shows the silent mode installation (assuming the RMS Client installer package is already downloaded to C:\Downloads)

msiexec /qn c:\downloads\setup.msi

You can have the setup file on a network share and use managed software deployment to run the msiexec command.

Note: The sync client does not support IRM policies that expire document access rights.

Step 2: Help users sign in

OneDrive doesn't support single sign in using existing Office or Windows credentials, but you can help users sign in to the sync client in these other ways:

  • Use the following URL to start OneDrive Setup on users' computers. When users click to begin Setup, a sign-in window will appear for users can enter email address.


  • Use the following URL with each user's email address to start Setup and prepopulate user email addresses in the sign-in window.


If you want to auto-configure a SharePoint site to be synced, you can use the URL below as a guide to build the path to the SharePoint site you want to sync automatically. Replace HERE with the correct values for each component of the URL.

Note: Replace special characters like the period (.), hyphen (-), and at sign (@) with the corresponding encoded values. For example, if the URL includes a hyphen, replace the hyphen with its encoded value, %2D. Additionally, you will need Client Side Object Model (CSOM) knowledge to query the team site to determine the appropriate SiteID, WebID and ListID to build the appropriate URL.


  • Run the following command using System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) script: %localappdata%\Microsoft\OneDrive\OneDrive.exe

    It starts the OneDrive process. If users haven't set up any accounts, it displays OneDrive Setup. To display OneDrive Setup specifically to users who haven't set up an account for your tenant, use the command line parameter /configure_business:<tenantId>


  • When you use System Center Configuration Manager, make sure you run OneDrive.exe with User permissions (not as an Administrator).

  • For help finding your tenant ID, see Find your Office 365 tenant ID.

Step 3: Set your update ring (Optional)

To delay updates to the OneDrive sync client, and control their deployment to your users, you can switch from the Production update ring to the Enterprise update ring. For more information about the update rings and how the sync client checks for updates, see The OneDrive sync client update process.

To set the update ring using Group Policy, enable the Delay updating OneDrive.exe until the second release wave setting. For more information about this setting, see Use Group Policy to control OneDrive sync client settings.

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See Also

Restrictions and limitations when you sync files and folders using the new OneDrive sync client

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