Getting started with OneDrive

In my last post I outlined some of the online storage solutions, I will now follow up with a series of articles on each of these solutions, going into a little more detail. In today’s post I will take you through how to download,install, setup and start using OneDrive.

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So you’ve decided that OneDrive is the online storage solution for you, but what next?

I’ve been using OneDrive for a long while now, way back in the days when it was called SkyDrive. In this time there have been many changes and improvements to get it to where it is today.

It is applications such as OneDrive are what make it possible to enjoy the freedom of “Working From Anywhere” because we now more than ever before,

“Work is no longer a place”tweet this

Download and Install

First things first, you need to download and install it on your devices:

  • Windows 10 and 8.1: Good news it’s already on your device.
  • Windows 8, Windows 7, or Vista: Download OneDrive for Windows 8, 7 or Vista
  • Mac: Download OneDrive for Mac
  • Mobile Devices: OneDrive is already built in to the latest version of Windows tablets and phones. Go to the App Store or Google Play Store to download to your Iphone or Android device.

Copying or moving your files to OneDrive

There are a few different ways to put your existing files on OneDrive. First, decide if you want to keep the original files on your PC and put copies of them on OneDrive, or if you want to cut and move them from your PC to OneDrive.

You will need to use the File Explorer method if you have Windows 10 as OneDrive as Microsoft decided to build it into Windows 10 retire the app. Alternately you can go to

To copy files to OneDrive using the OneDrive app (Windows 8.1 and Windows RT 8.1)Onedrive app

  1. On the Start screen, tap or click OneDrive to open the OneDrive app.
  2. Tap or click folders to browse to the location on OneDrive where you want to add the files.
  3. Swipe in from the top or bottom edge of the screen or right-click to open the app commands, and then tap or click Add files.
  4. Browse to the files you want to upload, tap or click to select them, and then tap or click Copy to OneDrive.

To move files to OneDrive using the OneDrive app (Windows 8.1 and Windows RT 8.1)

When you move files, you’re removing them from your PC and adding them to OneDrive.

TIP: This is useful if you would like to free up space on your device and store the files online in OneDrive. You can change this at anytime, ,more on that later.

  1. Tap or click the arrow next to OneDrive and choose This PC.
  2. Browse to the files you want to move, and then swipe down on them or right-click them to select them.
  3. Tap or click Cut.
  4. Tap or click the arrow next to This PC and choose OneDrive to browse to a folder in your OneDrive.
  5. Swipe in from the top or bottom edge of the screen or right-click to open the app commands, and then tap or click Paste.

Copy or move files to OneDrive using Explorer (All versions or Windows)

Using File Explorer is by far the easiest way to copy or move files to OneDrive. A OneDrive file directory is added to you local PC when you install OneDrive, this shows as another location on your hard drive as below.


To move or copy files to your OneDrive is the same process that you use for moving/copying files as you do on your hard drive.

Simply right click and select copy or move, then select the destination folder in your OneDrive.

You are also able to use the drag and drop method between windows, please be aware that this moves rather than copies the file or folder.



To save files to OneDrive from a desktop appfile explorer

When you’re using a desktop app like Word, Excel, Powerpoint or any other app or program, you can also save files directly to OneDrive. Click Save in the app you’re using, and then browse to the folder within OneDrive in the Explorer pane, enter a name for the file, and then tap or click Save.

Choose files to be available offline

If space on your PC isn’t a concern, you can make your entire OneDrive available offline, alternately you can choose to have some folders/files available online only (saves space on your local drive)

To choose which files to make available offline/online or online only:onedrive-screen-2

  1. Right click on any folder in OneDrive in File Explorer
  2. Select “choose OneDrive folders to sync”
  3. Check any folders you would like to be available offline
  4. Any unchecked folders will be available online only

TIP: To restore online only files to be available offline, simply repeat the above procedure and check the required folders to be available offline and they will be restored to show on your local drive.


Other useful actions from File Explorer

Here are some other useful actions that can be accessed by right clicking on folders or files in File Explorer:OneDrive-screen-1

Share a OneDrive link – provides a link to share, this link will give access to the folder or file. This is very useful as an alternative for sending large files by email.

More OneDrive sharing options – this will take you to Onedrive online where you can choose to invite people to share selected folders/files. You have the option of allowing people to view only or view/edit.

View online – view the selected folder or file online at OneDrive.

Are you looking for time saving money saving FREE online tools to use?

Download our FREE guide…..


This topic will also be covered in a workshop at the WFA Conference 2016.

Any questions, any comments, please let us know by adding a comment. I will personally respond to all comments.

Andy Willis
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Andy Willis

Andy is the founder of WFA.Life, he has a passion for unlocking freedom in peoples lives by finding, testing and sharing the tips, tools and advice to allow people to live the "Working from Anywhere" Lifestyle.
Andy spends his time away from the computer cycling or hiking up mountains or catching a wave on his SUP.
Andy Willis
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  1. […] The Ultimate Quick Start Guide to OneDrive […]

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  3. […] Check out this post for a more detailed guide to OneDrive The Ultimate Quick Start Guide to OneDrive […]

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