Files save to OneDrive by default in Windows 10

Files save to OneDrive by default in Windows 10

While you can always choose where to save files that you create, your computer settings include default save locations for your Desktop, Documents, and Pictures files.

During Windows 10 setup, you should have seen a “Protect your files with OneDrive” screen telling you about the benefits of saving your files to OneDrive. If you clicked Next, you set up OneDrive as your default save location. If you clicked the “Only save files to this PC” option, you set up your PC as the default save location. You can change this default save location any time.

Screenshot of Protect your files with OneDrive in Windows 10 setup

Whether you save by default to your computer or to OneDrive, all your files are available on your PC. The OneDrive app built in to Windows 10 synchronizes your files between OneDrive and your computer, so they're backed up, protected, and available on any device. You can use Files On-Demand to free up space or to make sure files or folders are always available on your device, even when you're offline.

Tip: To move a file between a folder in your PC and a folder in OneDrive, use File Explorer or the OneDrive app to drag the files where you want them.

Set where your files are saved

You can change your default save setting any time. Use the OneDrive app settings to change where your files are saved by default.

  1. Select the OneDrive cloud icon in the notification area, at the far right of the taskbar.

    OneDrive icon in notification area

    Note: You might need to click the Show hidden icons arrow The Show hidden icons button. 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. Select Start, type OneDrive in the search box, and then select OneDrive in the search results.

  2. Select More > Settings.

    Screenshot of getting to OneDrive Settings

  3. On the Auto Save tab, under Protect your important folders, select Update folders and follow the instructions to protect your files by saving them to OneDrive.

No matter which default setting you choose, you still can select the save location you want each time you save a file. When you click Save for new files or Save As for existing files, click OneDrive or This PC and then pick a folder to save your file to.

Important: If you stop protecting a folder, that folder on your PC may suddenly look empty. This is because the Desktop, Documents, and Pictures folders exist both under This PC and OneDrive, which might make them easy to mix up. When you stop protecting a folder, existing files stay in OneDrive and new files save to your PC.

Need more help?

To learn more about moving OneDrive folders, read how to sync your Documents, Pictures, and Desktop folders with OneDrive.

Learn how to sync OneDrive files without taking up disk space on your PC with Files On-Demand.

Online

Get online help
See more support pages for OneDrive and OneDrive for Business.
For the OneDrive mobile app, see Troubleshoot OneDrive mobile app problems.

Email Support icon

Email support
If you still need help, shake your mobile device while you're in the OneDrive app or email the OneDrive support team. To contact One Drive for Business support from your PC or Mac, select the OneDrive icon in the notification area or menu bar, then select More > Send feedback > I don't like something.

One Drive for Business Admins can also view the OneDrive for Business Tech Community, Help for OneDrive for Business Admins, or contact Office 365 for business support.

Office 365 community forums

Got feedback?
OneDrive UserVoice is your place to suggest the features you’d like to see us add to OneDrive. While we can’t guarantee any specific features or timelines, we will respond to every suggestion that gets at least 500 votes.

Go to the OneDrive UserVoice.

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