Use a screen reader to sync OneDrive for Business in Windows

You can use a screen reader and keyboard shortcuts to synchronize your OneDrive for Business files to your computer. Synchronizing enables you to work with your OneDrive for Business files directly in File Explorer and to access them even when you're offline. Whenever you're online, any changes that you or others have made will be synced.

If you're new to using OneDrive for Business, see Get started using a screen reader with OneDrive for Business in Windows.

Note: This topic assumes that JAWS users have turned off the Virtual Ribbon Menu feature.

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Sync OneDrive for Business files to your computer

To sync OneDrive for Business to your computer, you need the OneDrive for Business sync client. For information about using the OneDrive for Business sync client, see Which OneDrive sync client am I using.

  1. Sign in to Office 365 or your organization's SharePoint site with your work or school account.

    Note: If you need more information about signing in to Office 365, see Where to sign in to Office 365.

  2. Press the Tab key until you hear “App launcher,” and then press Enter.

  3. Press the Tab key until you hear “OneDrive,” and then press Enter.

  4. Press the Tab key until you hear “New.”

  5. Press the Right arrow key until you hear “Sync.” (In Narrator, you hear “Sync, Menu item.”) Then, press Enter. The Sync dialog box opens, and you hear “Sync this library to your device for easy access.”

  6. To start sync, press the Tab key until you hear “Sync now” and then press Enter. An Internet security dialog box opens, and you hear “Do you want to allow this website to open a program on your computer?”

  7. In the security dialog box, to grant permission, press Alt+A or tab until you hear “Allow,” and then press Enter.

  8. The OneDrive for Business dialog box opens with the Show my files button selected, and you hear “Microsoft OneDrive for Business, Show my files button.” The dialog box includes the web address of your OneDrive for Business and the location on your computer where the library will be saved.

    At this point, a security dialog box may open. If this dialog box requires that you enter the email address of your Office 365 account, do the following:

    1. Type in the email address of your account, press the Tab key to move to the Next button and then press Enter.

    2. The Sign in window opens with the Password edit field selected. Type your password.

    3. Press the Tab key to move to the Sign In button, and then press Enter. The Sign In window closes, and the OneDrive for Business dialog box reappears with the Show my files button selected.

  9. To display your files as they sync, press Spacebar. File Explorer opens with the focus on the list of documents in your OneDrive for Business folder, and you hear “OneDrive for Business, Items view” and the name of the first item in the list. (In Narrator, you hear “OneDrive for Business window, Table items view,” and the name of the first item.)

File Explorer lists your OneDrive for Businesss folder in the Navigation pane as either OneDrive – CompanyName or OneDrive @ CompanyName.

After your documents have been synced to your computer, you can save Microsoft Office files directly to your OneDrive for Business folder. In the file you want to save, press Alt+F, A, and then A. In the Save As list, press the Up arrow or Down arrow key to select your OneDrive for Business folder and then press Enter.

Stop syncing your OneDrive for Business folder

  1. With the focus on the desktop, press F6 to move to the Start button.

  2. Press the Tab key until you hear “Notification chevron button,” and then press Spacebar. The Notification overflow pane opens.

  3. Press the Up arrow key and then the arrow keys until you hear “Toolbar, OneDrive for Business.”

  4. To open the context menu, press Shift+F10. The context menu opens, and you hear “Context menu, Open your OneDrive for Business folder.”

  5. To stop syncing your OneDrive for Business folder, press T. The OneDrive for Business dialog box opens, with a OneDrive for Business folder selected and the focus on the Stop syncing button. To select a different folder, press the Down arrow key. After you have made your selection, press Enter.

Sync a folder manually

  1. With the focus on the desktop, press F6 to move to the Start button.

  2. Press the Tab key until you hear “Notification chevron button,” and then press Spacebar. The Notification overflow pane opens.

  3. Press the Up arrow key and then the arrow keys until you hear “Toolbar, OneDrive for Business.”

  4. To open the context menu, press Shift+F10. The context menu opens, and you hear “Context menu, Open your OneDrive for Business folder.”

  5. To manually sync a folder by using the Sync now button , press N. When you’re on your network, OneDrive for Business automatically syncs folders with their SharePoint libraries approximately every 10 minutes.

View and fix sync problems

If you encounter issues with syncing with OneDrive for Business, try the following steps to view and then fix the problems.

  1. With the focus on the desktop, press F6 to move to the Start button.

  2. Press the Tab key until you hear “Notification chevron button,” and then press Spacebar. The Notification overflow pane opens.

  3. Press the Up arrow key and then the arrow keys until you hear “Toolbar, OneDrive for Business.”

  4. To open the context menu, press Shift+F10. The context menu opens, and you hear “Context menu, Open your OneDrive for Business folder.”

  5. Select from the following options:

    • To view sync problems, press V. The OneDrive for Business dialog box opens, and you hear “Leaving menu, File Explorer, Items view, OneDrive for Business dialog, [X] items can’t be synced with OneDrive for Business” and the name of the first file.

      To move through the list of files, press the Down arrow key. Select the file you want to open, press the Tab key to move to the Open item button, and then press Enter. In the opened file, fix the problem that is causing the sync problem and save the file.

    • This option repairs libraries that are not in sync. It syncs the server versions of these libraries to your computer and backs up any local files that have unsynced changes.

      To run Repair, press E. A OneDrive for Business dialog box opens, with the focus on the Repair button. To repair, press Enter.

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