Let OneDrive save the files to your hard drive

There are a ton of great features in Windows 8.1 that make it worth using, and the recently leaked Update 1 sounds promising too. But for traditional PC users with a large hard drive, the way Windows 8.1 works with OneDrive may be less pleasant.

To make the deep SkyDrive integration in Windows 8.1 more usable on a tablet, Microsoft has decided to store most of your SkyDrive documents in the cloud and only download them locally when you need them.

That seems sensible if you only have 32 or 64 GB of storage space on a tablet, but with a 500 GB hard drive in your laptop or PC that is not an issue. It also makes more sense to always have a local copy if you regularly back up to an external hard drive at home.

Files available offline

If you want to make sure that all your OneDrive files are always available locally and sync back to the cloud, there are two ways to do that.

The first is File Explorer and right-click the OneDrive icon in the left sidebar. Select from the context menu Make available offline. Then OneDrive will be forced to download all your cloud-stored files to the local machine. (Warning: This can take a while if you store a lot on your OneDrive.)

If you only want to have a specific collection of files or folders available offline, you can also right-click on them individually to make them available offline. To see which files are already available offline, go to the column Availability search in the main window of File Explorer when you go through your OneDrive data.

The second way to get your documents from the cloud is to open the modern OneDrive app and click on the Windows key + I to press the Settings- to bring out the charm. Then select Options and click or press the scroll bar to move it to on to resist. There should only be one scroll bar, but it's labeled for clarity Access all files offline.

Whichever way you choose, all your OneDrive files are now available on your local drive.

This is a freely translated article from our American sister site PCWorld.com. Described terms, operations and settings may be region specific.

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