Announcement: OneDrive Sync Updates

Stephen Rose

All of us here on the OneDrive Team have been hard at work delivering many of the OneDrive sync client updates we communicated at Ignite to further improve the user experience and administration of syncing files from Office 365. With the holidays rapidly approaching we wanted to give you an update on those enhancements.

The best part is the latest OneDrive sync client will automatically update with these new capabilities. If you aren’t running the latest OneDrive sync client, or aren’t sure, you can learn more here.


Activity center

The activity center is now available in the latest OneDrive sync client on Mac and PC giving you visibility to the most recent sync activity and status. Simply click on the OneDrive icon in your system tray (PC) or Finder (Mac) to see your file sync


ODB Activity Center.jpg






















Conditional access

You can now restrict OneDrive sync to only domain joined or workplace joined devices. You can even make access contingent on PC health if you like. All of this can be managed through the new OneDrive admin center preview and by configuring Azure Active Directory policies. Learn more here.


Syncing SharePoint sites

Making sure you have the information that is critical to you on every device no matter where you are is key to our customers. The ability to sync SharePoint sites directly to OneDrive is one of these features that makes doing this easier and simpler for end users. We’ve had great feedback on the public preview of syncing SharePoint Online document libraries in the latest OneDrive sync client. We remain committed to providing a reliable and performant sync experience for all your Office 365 files and continue to refine the public preview to meet our quality expectations. We’re on target to make this capability generally available in January.


Standalone Mac client

Ever since we added OneDrive for Business support to the latest sync client, we’ve seen an increase of adoption and interest from the Mac community. However, one of the largest blockers for enterprise deployments is that most admins do not want to utilize the Mac App Store to deploy and distribute software due to its limitations.

Today we’re releasing a standalone OneDrive sync client for Mac that you can deploy and manage outside of the Mac App Store. This standalone client also provides sync status visual overlays in Finder, a Finder shortcut for OneDrive, and the ability to set-up OneDrive sync to run at log in. This latest client also has built-in multi-language support. You can get the standalone client for Mac here.


Finder large tile.png

As we get ready for 2017, I want to take a moment to wish all of you a healthy and happy new year from the OneDrive/SharePoint teams here in Redmond. We look forward to continuing to bring all of you more great innovation while finding new ways to make you more productive no matter where and how you choose to work.


Thank you and happy holidays!


Stephen L Rose

Director, OneDrive Product Marketing

51 Replies

Great stuff Stephen, using the preview for SharePoint online and groups and works well. Is there any update on shared folder sync, will this be an automatic experience or behave just like a SharePoint folder sync as it does now with the preview.


Keep up the good work, almost ready to thinking about "dropping" the other file sync tool

The OneDrive team has been hard at work for a loooong time now, and delivered a long list of improvements over the course of this year. With all the major issues tackled now, hopefully you guys will enjoy a more relaxed 2017! :)

For SharePoint site sync to really work it would be great if you didn't have to add each SP site to each machine with onedrive you wanted it to sync to. e.g. add a site in one place and get it on all your machines. This is why Dropbox sync works well for folders shared by others, it all just goes in the one place on all your devices. I don't want to have to add my 10 sites i care about to my 5 different devices (laptop, phone, tablet, home pc, desktop).

That would indeed be a very nice option, but not as the default setting. I have a lot of clients that do not have huge drives in their machines (128 SSDs), and they don't want everything to sync to all devices.


Stephen, Do you have an estimation on when to expect this update?

The previews are all available today. We will go GA very soon. :)

Even a checkbox to optionally include each one you have added before would be nice, like it does for other onedrive/dropbox folders.  I just dont want to have to manually find each site on each device and set up sync for it .. again. 

Thanks for these awesome updates. IMHO is better to way some more time just to be sure everything is absolutely ready!!

And f$#! Linux users right? I have to switch to Windows just to sync my business client. More Linux users should cancel their 365 subscriptions, since MS doesn't give a **bleep** about us anyway, even with Satya and all of his lately Linux-love.

I didn't notice a mention of allowing syncing of special characters with OneDrive.  That has been on the roadmap for almost an entire year and there has been no news lately.  What is the status of that?


Also, hopefully more work will be done to bring together Office Groups, Sharepoint, and OneDrive mobile apps.  They are a confusing mess on what you can do in each one, so much so that I will not even introduce our users to them in their current state.

Thanks for your passionate message Adan.


It's a pretty low marketshare running Linux desktop but it is growing. Perhaps it is time to look at Linux especially since none of our competitors support it. Also, now that we have a Bash running native in Windows 10 (link on how to set it up here ) it may be time to revisit.


Thanks for the feedback.

No chance. We are just getting warmed up. Lots of cool stuff coming in 2017!

Has Microsoft worked with any of the 3rd party vendors like Centrify or such to assist on determining if a Mac is "domain" joined or not with the AD environment?

Great improvements are in the Sync client this year and promising. Congrats team for your hardwork.


Let's hope OneDrive for business works better than standard OneDrive. It's been three days and I am still unable to use OneDrive app in my Mac since the last update, which actually doesn't update. So many people upset out there and Microsoft doesn't reply to any queries.. Terrible customer service for a company such as Microsoft.

The interface pictuure that is attached seems to be the OneDrive personal and not the OneDrive for Business client based on what I'm seeing, should the Business client be getting the same visual?

Are you running the new standalone Mac client?

No, I'm referencing the Windows client.  I've looked at the version number and it is listed as

The latest version is 17.3.6743.1212. Try uninstalling and reinstalling the latest version. See if that helps.

Now we need the ability to sync Shared folders on OneDrive.

Thanks for the ability to better sync SharePoint to OneDrive.

Point of clarification: is the App Store client deprecated?   Where should we point our users to?  I was hoping there would be a nice landing page for the app, with a download link off of it (rather than a direct download to the pkg file like you did in this post.

Point users to the download links in the article since this is not in GA yet.

@Stephen Rose Is installing this client enough, or do we still need to do the registry setting like described in this article https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Get-started-syncing-SharePoint-sites-with-the-new-OneDrive-...

You will have to follow the article steps for preview. This will not be necessary at GA

Hi Stephen,


Great to hear that GA is ETA next month, we're awating this for our Win10/EMS/O365 deployment to a target group of 25 000-30 000 users in total.


A key question for us though is - will you be bringing back the context menu in the GA release? Currently there seem to be different versions distributed to different customers out there, some have the context menu and some don't.


The whole point of syncing SPO libraries locally is to be able to work and collaborate on files using File Explorer. Without the context menu users cannot right-click the file and copy link to easily paste and share the URL wherever/however they like. Instead they have to struggle to find out what the URL is in order to copy and share it.


Therefore the lack of the context menu is really a usability issue for us.




I'd like to see an update on this as well.

Hi @Stephen Rose, I like Sharepoint sync for files onboarding, but I'd like to generally disable Sharepoint Sync but still allow OneDrive for Business Sync. Will this be possible?

The main reason is fear of Ransomware.  Or are there any other suggestions on how to tackle this?

If you customer is running Windows 10 Anniversary Edition they have Windows ATP and Microsoft Edge which would eliminate this issue. What your asking can be done but creates a subpar experience for the customer.


Happy to jump on a call to discuss.

@Ivan Unger wrote:

Hi @Stephen Rose, I like Sharepoint sync for files onboarding, but I'd like to generally disable Sharepoint Sync but still allow OneDrive for Business Sync. Will this be possible?

The main reason is fear of Ransomware.  Or are there any other suggestions on how to tackle this?


Hi, thanks for the response. Would you care to fruther elaborate on both points?


I know Windows Defender ATP is supposed to further help with post breach attacks, and Edge is getting some (not sure which is relevant here) security hardening. But are they combined really able to prevent 100% of new emerging ransomware attacks? 


Also, how is preventing SharePoint sync a subpar UX? If anything I'd argue that syncing the files offline is getting my users a subpar Sharepoint experience since they are missing out on additional document library features and views?


Nothing can prevent a user from being not smart and clicking something, but, if they do it through Edge, they have a 82% less chance of getting infected over other browsers due to the fact that Edge runs in it's own VM. Second, ATP can make you proactivly aware of key viruses and attacks so you can filter for them via your caching server, firewalls and antivirus software.


As for a subpar expereience, the goal is for users to be able to access any files critical to them through a single view. Microsoft Graph brings intellegence to that view. Siloing those views removes access and insite that can help users to be more productive.


Hope this helps clarifiy. :)

How do we get that version, every machine I have seens is running 6720.1207?

This is the OneDrive personal. I have run the standalone, the mac store and none of them works .. I am now at the point that I will have to move all my file to an external hard drive and forget about the imcopetence of Microsoft. I am still unable to get OneDrive personal to work. I hope it goes better for the Business side.

Actually, I can see plenty of use cases where I wouldn't want that. I might want to sync 10 SharePoint sites + entire OneDrive library on my laptop, but on my mobile device I might want only one or two SP sites.

Hello Peter,


You can get even the current latest version (v17.3.6743.1212) from https://hansbrender.com/2016/11/28/onedrive-for-business-next-generation-sync-client-all-versions/ who dived deep into the NextGen Sync client.


Also don't forget to set:


To use all latest functionalities.

See detailed instructions here (sorry seems in Dutch only): https://support.office.com/nl-nl/article/Ga-aan-de-slag-met-het-synchroniseren-van-SharePoint-sites-...


I also got some error messages that I was not able to sync shared OneDrive or SP TeamSites but after remove the current sync relation and re-set it up it worked, however not completely good but at least there is a start.

Also use Edge instead of IE11 when clicking the Sync Now button in your browser under your SP TeamSite or Shared with Me docs (in my case IE11 does nothing, while Edge opens the NG Sync Client).


Thanks I managed to find the latest previerw version now.

Sure. It should give you the choice of what to sync on each device then.  Having to manually find each one again and set up sync with it seems terrible to me.

Is there an official article in which I can find limitations using the new client, like the number of items per site and in total I can sync?

We will look to release technical documention when we GA the product in a few weeks that will cover all of those aspects.

We aren't able to get this to work.

  • We have a supported version of office  - latest from our Office 365 account which is set to First Release (i.e. slow ring)
  • downloaded and installed the client. .1212 is installed and running.
  • Set the registry key. Looked in registry and validated it was set.
  • Closed the OneDrive client.
  • Restarted it.
  • It asked for login. It then said I was already syncing with that user ID (and I was on the OneDrive for Business side, not the sharepoint side)
  • Groove still running and in control of our Sharepoint sites.
  • Have this on Windows 7.
  • Rebooted for good measure.


I got this to work on my Win10 machine back in Sept, but there was no Sharepoint takeover then, it was a manual setup.


How do we force the takeover from Groove? We have 3 machines now with .1212 running and all it is doing is the ODB side. Groove still doing the SHarepoint sides.

Great! Are there any plans to allow syncing libraries from other companies? E.g. a library from another tenant is shared with me and I want to sync it with NGSC... Thanks Christian

If I'd move to Linux I'd be prepared to write some utilities for myself. In OneDrive you can use https://dev.onedrive.com.
Now, on a realistic note - the number of users on that platform is quite low and the focus is rather on the other ones.
Until something like this will appear in OneDrive Admin Center, maybe something like this can be used: https://gallery.technet.microsoft.com/How-to-enabledisable-sync-8ad53996
I banged my head into the wall with this one for a while. In the end switching browsers fixed it for me. For some PCs switching from Chrome to IE was the fix, for others it was switching from IE to Chrome!

@Paul Youngberg wrote:
I banged my head into the wall with this one for a while. In the end switching browsers fixed it for me. For some PCs switching from Chrome to IE was the fix, for others it was switching from IE to Chrome!

What do you mean "switch." I am unclear how the browser fits in to this scenario. Temporarily change the default browser? Simply open up the other browser?

I'm also interested in the future of the Mac desktop sync client updates... any clue as to when the ability to sync shared folders will be rolled out?

Yes this. @Stephen Rose the context menu "Get a Link" is absolutely must and is sorely missed. In absence of this, users have to go online and go through a convoluted process of getting a link via web interface!

@Peter Liang wrote:

I'm also interested in the future of the Mac desktop sync client updates... any clue as to when the ability to sync shared folders will be rolled out?

+1 Peter

Missing this feature as well. Our org has started to open up for Outlook Groups, for projects and smaller teams but unfortunately thouse on Mac's (several 1000'sn) cant use the sharepoint sync feature.

ODfB work great with in the st.alone client (thanks of that btw) and there is a "hack" (not so great) but it does not work in my case.

In Safari, When you hit the sync button -> sync now, in SP Documents folder it asks you for permison to open ODfB client, but you dont get the option to select the folder and sync it to you Mac.

in Chrome it does not open the ODfB client.

Just noticed an announcement in our admin message center (dated 5/8/17) about upcoming improvements to the "sharing experience" for OneDrive for Business (specifically mentioning the sync clients).  Does anyone from the community know if this might have anything to do with the/my eagerly-awaited Mac desktop sync client shared folder functionality?

Tune into the SharePoint Virtual Summit tomorrow where we will be demoing this feature and annoucing the rollout dates!