SOLVED

SharePoint syncing, enable or disable and why?

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Occasional Contributor

As an end-user trainer I train at different kinds of companies, large and small. End-users adopt and enjoy working with Office 365 more if they can sync SharePoint libraries with ODFB. Sometimes SharePoint sync is enabled en sometimes it is not at same-size (large or small) companies. Can anybody give me reasons to disable SharePoint sync? Does it depend on the number of files in libraries? Security? I would like to be able to explain why syncing is on or off. 

4 Replies
My advise is to keep sync enabled unless there are very specific reasons for not doing it
Best Response confirmed by Vanessa Simons-Kelly (Occasional Contributor)
Solution
Reasons to not allow sync.
1. Potential size of library. Larger libraries can cause performance issues with the sync client. It's gotten better over the years, but I think it's still recommended to keep under 300k files. So this is a consideration.
2. Same as 1. But potential for one user to easily wipe out larger libraries, or accidently drag and drop folders around causing confusion :P.
3. Data leakage. You don't want someone's laptop to get stolen and have access to all your files. Obviously device encryption and other means can help here, but they may not have that, so they prevent mass leakage by preventing syncing.
4. Metadata. If they utilize metadata for files the sync client doesn't support it yet, so they may just not allow it to prevent problems / confusing. (you can still do read only when metadata is in use)
5. Network storms from someone uploading 5 gigs of files, and if everyone is synced, you now have a network spike for all clients to get this file updates. Obviously you could put sync client limits in, but depending on number of clients etc. this could be difficult. But it also assumes you have large libraries shared among everyone. Would be an architecture thing from company to company.

Anyway, these are 5 big things I can think of off the top of my head. Hope it helps!

Thank you for your reply @Chris Webb This is what I was looking for: a practical explanation (on an end-user level) why not to sync. Your answer really helps me understand the reasons why some companies decide to unable syncing.