OneDrive taking a long time to find and sync changes




Our company's OneDrive seem to take way too long to sync files back and forth to our Sharepoint Document Library. E.g. when creating a new file or folder it just sits at "Looking for changes" for about 30-60 seconds or more before anything happens. The upload/download speeds seems ok though, it's just very slow to identify changes made to the document library.


The full library consists of about 40.000 files at a size of 40 GB. However, we have the same problem for the personal OneDrive folders as well, which often contains close to nothing. The default setting for all our employees is to access files through the cloud (not enabling a local sync of the entire library). Except for automatically cached docs and perhaps a very few selected folders.

The slow sync is in turn often creating worse sync issues when opening and starting to edit, before the first copy has been created in the cloud.


Is this just what I should expect from Microsoft, or does anyone know how to improve this?

9 Replies

@Tormod Solem Slupphaug 


This is unusual for such a small set of files. To compare I run sync of multiple OneDrive accounts, plus sync to SharePoint, plus DropBox and other services with a total of at least 5TB of files and have no perf issues.


Also, if your employees are accessing the files exclusively through the cloud, it's not really a normal sync scenario - they're basically just opening and closing files from a remote server.


Look for other factors that may be common to your company's setup.


1. Does this problem arise when your device is on another network (e.g. at home)

2. Are you running anti-virus software or system services that may be adding additional layers

@Deleted Thanks for the feedback. Let me clarify a few details I forgot: all employees are using the OneDrive desktop sync client to access files, so I just meant that the files and folders aren't normally tagged as "Always keep on this device".


If I access the files and folders through OneDrive on the web, it looks like changes happen instantaneously. 


  1. Problem seem to be the same regardless of location (home vs the office).
  2. Yes, we are running Trend Micro OfficeScan Antivirus. Don't know if that slows down anything, but could be checked.

@Tormod Solem Slupphaug I would check the A/V situation first. When I was an Office MVP many moons ago, at least 90% of Office performance issues were due to AntiVirus software, especially Office plugins. I don't think that has changed much over the years. 


Best to isolate the problem and see how access is from a different environment.

I have now tried running the sync (OneDrive desktop client) again, without any third-party antivirus enabled. The results are still the same. E.g. if creating a new folder in OneDrive (using file explorer), OneDrive starts "Looking for changes" and takes about 40 seconds before uploading the folder. 


What to do? :thinking_face:

best response confirmed by Tormod Solem Slupphaug (Contributor)

Created a support ticket with Microsoft today. We were unable to locate any errors, and support eventually confirmed that the sync times can vary a lot from customer to customer. This all comes down to connectivity issues within the OneDrive desktop client itself.


Unfortunately 30-60 seconds wait before uploading local changes to the cloud, isn't out of the ordinary for many customers, and there was nothing support could do about this situation.



The sync issues are still here! Some changes take more than 5 Minutes, or even they are not synced until the sync client is paused and resumed. We lost a bunch of document-Edits, have people working on the wrong files or working on previously renamed files.
So the issue is still there and MS should contiue investigating it.
As long as the sync client shows no error message, the customer must have a total guarantee that it is perfectly working.
I could not find a list from Microsoft for AV-Software or firewalls that causes trouble with OneDrive, so i assume all AV are compatible and will not investigate on that.

@PeterV385 I have the same issue.  I'm not sure if this has anything to do with it, but we also run Trend Micro Worry-Free Business Antivirus.  I plan to run some tests with some Windows Defender subscriptions to see if the performance is any better.  In the meantime, if you find a solution, please post it back here.

Same issue for me as well
"Is this just what I should expect from Microsoft"
Yes. OneDrive has lots of sync issues and support will always try to spin it like it's your fault. There are better solutions out there as far as actual syncing is concerned, but the advantage OneDrive has over all the others is the seamless integration with other Microsoft apps. This integration is possibly the source of the issues, because perhaps they're trying to do too much and introducing bugs. Microsoft has a long history of releasing horribly buggy software.