Sync files with the OneDrive sync client in Windows

Sync files with the OneDrive sync client in Windows

With OneDrive, you can sync files between your computer and the cloud, so you can get to your files from anywhere. You can work with your synced files directly in File Explorer and access your files even when you’re offline. Whenever you’re online, any changes that you or others make will sync automatically.

This article describes how to download the new OneDrive sync client and sign in with your personal account, or work or school account, to get started syncing. If you use Office 365 Business, you can also sync files from your SharePoint sites. If you're not using Office 365 Business, see Sync SharePoint files with the OneDrive for Business sync client (Groove.exe).

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Note: For more information about how to use OneDrive, see OneDrive video training.

Install and set up

  1. If you don't have Windows 10 or Office 2016, install the Windows version of the new OneDrive sync client.

  2. Start OneDrive Setup.

If you have no accounts signed in to OneDrive

If you don’t currently have an account signed in to OneDrive, use these instructions to start OneDrive.

  1. Select the Start button, search for “OneDrive”, and then open it:

    • In Windows 10, select the OneDrive desktop app.

      Screenshot of searching for the OneDrive desktop app in Windows 10

    • In Windows 7, under Programs, select Microsoft OneDrive.

      Screenshot of searching for the OneDrive desktop app in Windows 7

    • In Windows 8.1, search for OneDrive for Business, and then select the OneDrive for Business app.

  2. When OneDrive Setup starts, enter your personal account, or your work or school account, and then select Sign in.

    Screenshot of the first screen of OneDrive Setup

If you already have an account signed in to OneDrive

If you already have an account signed in to OneDrive and you want to add another account, you’ll do that in OneDrive Settings.

  1. Select the white or blue OneDrive cloud icon in the Windows taskbar notification area.

    OneDrive SyncClient with blue cloud and white cloud icons

  2. In the activity center, select More > Settings.

    Screenshot of getting to OneDrive Settings

    (You might need to click the Show hidden icons arrow next to the notification area to see the OneDrive icon. If the icon doesn't appear in the notification area, OneDrive might not be running. Click Start, type OneDrive in the search box, and then click OneDrive in the search results.)

  3. In Settings, select Account, and then select Add an account.

    OneDrive add account dialog

    When OneDrive Setup starts, enter your new account, and then select Sign in.

    Screenshot of the first screen of OneDrive Setup

Key points in OneDrive Setup

There are two screens in OneDrive Setup that are helpful to watch for:

  • On the This is your OneDrive folder screen, select Next to accept the default folder location for your OneDrive files. If you want to change the folder location, select Change location - this is the best time to make this change.

    Screenshot of the This is Your OneDrive Folder screen in the Welcome to OneDrive wizard

  • On the Sync files from your OneDrive screen, choose the folders you want to sync, and select Next. This helps control the amount of space OneDrive files take on your computer and conserves bandwidth during sync processes. You can change this later in Settings, but this is a good opportunity as well.

    Screenshot of the Sync files from your OneDrive screen in the Welcome to OneDrive wizard

Note: If you were already syncing OneDrive for Business to your computer (using the previous sync client) and you've just installed the OneDrive desktop app, you won't see the This is your OneDrive folder or the Sync files from your OneDrive screen during OneDrive Setup. The OneDrive desktop app automatically takes over syncing in the same folder location you were using before. To choose which folders you're syncing, right-click the blue cloud icon in the taskbar notification area, and select Settings > Account > Choose folders.

See and manage your OneDrive files

You're all set. Your OneDrive files will appear in File Explorer in the OneDrive folder. If you use more than one account, your personal files appear under OneDrive – Personal and your work or school files appear under OneDrive - CompanyName.

Screenshot of OneDrive for Business files in File Explorer

You now have a new white or blue cloud icon (or both) in your notification area and your files are synced to your computer. Your blue cloud icon will appear as OneDrive – [YourTenantName] when you hover over the icon.

OneDrive for Business sync client

Any time you want to change the folders you sync on your computer, right-click that cloud icon in the taskbar notification area, and select Settings > Account > Choose folders. Find other information about your account and change other OneDrive settings from here.

OneDrive choose folders dialog

Need more help?

Fix OneDrive sync problems

Learn about OneDrive Files On-Demand

Sync your Documents, Pictures, and Desktop folders with OneDrive

Check the OneDrive help center.

Get help by emailing the OneDrive support team. In a OneDrive mobile app, shake the device to get help or share feedback on OneDrive.

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