Announcing Support for OneDrive Files On-Demand

For the past 5 years, H Tech Solutions has been advising customers to move corporate files from local hard drives and file servers to cloud based storage.   Cloud storage is cheap and widely available.  Moreover, it is more resiliant against failure compared to a single local hard drive.  Microsoft has been one of the leading companies in this space by offering businesses unlimited file storage with OneDrive for Business.  This is a great feature of Office 365.  However, there were a number of challenges in taking full advantage fo this platform:

1) Most users are not comfortable manipulating files in a web browser.  They prefer to manage their files in Windows Explorer.  This means that users needed to sync a copy of their files form the cloud to a local hard drive.

2) All local hard drives have a finite amount of space.   So the amount of local hard drive space available for synchng files to the cloud would limit your ability to use the unlimited storage available in OneDrive for Business.

3) Synching files used to be an all or nothing proposition.  You either synched your files or you chose not to sync them.  There was no in between option for files that you use occassionally.

These issues used to be a major obstacle for enterprse customers to fully adopt  OneDrive  for  Business in order to eliminate the need for local file shares.


To help customers overcome these challenges, Microsoft introduced a new feature called OneDrive Files On-Demand.  It is available when you install the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update.  You can use this feature in OneDrive (for consumers) and OneDrive for Business.


Pre-Requisites for OneDrive Files On-Demand

  • Windows 10 Fall Creators Update version 16299.15 or later
  • OneDrive build 17.3.7064.1005 or later


Benefits of OneDrive Files On-Demand

When you enable OneDrive Files On-Demand, Microsoft provides you with three options for your files:

1) Online only files

These files are never downloaded to the local hard drive.  They are visible in Wndows Explorer just like local files.  However, they can only be accessed with the PC is connected to the Internet.

2) Locally available files

These files are downloaded locally the first time they are opened.  Once the file has been downloaded, it can be accessed offline. 

3) Always available files

These files are always available locally on the hard drive.

Users can eaily switch between these options by right clicking on either the folder or file and selecting the preferred option.  This means that users have far greater control over how their files are stored using OneDrive Files On-Demand.



•What happens when I delete a file?

The file is deleted from OneDrive and all devices.  Files are available in the recycle bin for 30 days.

•What happens when I change a file to online only?

The file is removed from your hard drive.  But it is still available in OneDrive.

•What happens when I move online only files in Explorer?

The file is moved to the new folder.  The file is removed from OneDrive.

•How does Files On-Demand interact with Win 10 desktop search?

Online only files can be searched by name.  File contents are not indexed.

•How can I find more information on Files On Demand?


If you are interested in setting up OneDrive for your organization, please contact H Tech Solutions using the information below.


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