Sync the files in your Microsoft 365 or Microsoft SharePoint site libraries if you need to access them when you are offline.

Syncing libraries makes them always available on your computer and can help you to easily access and update files stored in SharePoint, but some libraries can be very large and cause bandwidth issues on your network and space issues on your computer.  

To save space on your computer it’s important to turn on the Files On-Demand feature in OneDrive. This also enables additional features for file management and syncing.

A brief video about using Files On-Demand is linked in the Actions menu. 

When to sync:

Syncing RecommendedSyncing Not Required
Accessed via OneDriveAccess directly in SharePoint
Frequently-used sitesOccasionally-used sites


  • OneDrive Files On-Demand
  • Mac OS 10.14 or newer
  • Download and Turn on OneDrive Files On-Demand

    • New Users on macOS 10.14 Mojave and above: For new OneDrive accounts, Files On-Demand is on by default when you set up OneDrive.
    • Existing users updating to macOS 12.1 Monterey: Existing users will have Files On-Demand turned on when updating to Monterey.
    • Apple File System (APFS) formatted volume: Required by OneDrive Files On-Demand for syncing files. If you've been using a previous file system, it will be automatically updated when you upgrade to Mac OS 10.14 Mojave.
    • Settings are unique to each device: Ensure Files On-Demand is turned on for each device where you want to use it.



    Download and install OneDrive Files On-Demand for Mac using the link in Actions.

    Turn on Files On-Demand in OneDrive

    Important: Files On-Demand requires Mac OS 10.14 or newer.

    1. On the top menu bar, select the OneDrive cloud icon. (If there is more than one cloud icon, select each in turn and read the title bar of the pop-up window that appears to find the icon that represents your work files labeled OneDrive -- Worcester Polytechnic Institute.)

    Menu bar with OneDrive cloud icon circled

    2. Select the gear icon for Help & Settings -> Preferences.

    3. Under Files on Demand, ensure that this feature is turned on. If the button there says Turn Off Files On-Demand, then it's already turned on. 

  • Use OneDrive Files On-Demand

    OneDrive Files On-Demand helps you access all your files in OneDrive without having to download all of them and use storage space on your device.

    With OneDrive Files On-Demand, you can:

    • Save space on your device by making files online-only. New files created online or on another device appear as online-only and don’t take up space on your device. When you’re connected to the internet you’ll be able to use online-only files like every other file on your device.
    • Set files and folders to be always available on your device.
    • Use Mac Finder to see all files along with important information about them, such as whether they are shared.
    • See thumbnails of over 300 different file types even if you don’t have the required application installed to open it.


    Mark a file or folder for offline use or as online-only

    Files On-Demand is enabled by default on macOS 12.1 Monterey. The latest updates will allow you to see all your files in Finder under the Location section on the Sidebar, and get new information about each file. Files and/or folders will have these statuses in Finder:


    Online-only files don’t take up space on your device, but they require that your device is connected to the internet to access. A cloud icon appears for each online-only file in Finder, but the file won’t download to your device until you open it.

    online only file icon with cloud and arrow

    Locally Available

    When you open an online-only file, it downloads to your device and becomes a locally available file. You can open a locally available file anytime, even without internet access. If you need more space, you can change the file back to online only by right-clicking the file and selecting Free up space.

    locally available file icon with document underlined

    Always keep on this device

    Only files that you select as Always keep on this device appear with the icon that includes a circle with a checkmark. These always available files download to your device and require storage space, but can be accessed when offline and do not require internet access.

    always keep file icon with checkmark

    With OneDrive Files On Demand, the following options should appear under Quick Actions when selecting files or folders in Finder:

    • Always Keep on This Device
    • Free Up Space
    • Share
    • Version History
    • View Online


    If these options do not appear, please relaunch Finder:

    1. Press and hold the Control and Option keys. 
    2.   Select Finder in the Dock, and press Relaunch.


    You can also relaunch Finder from the Force Quit dialog box:

    1. Launch Force Quit from the Apple menu (or press option + command + escape).
    2. Select Finder and press Relaunch.  



    Updates to Files On-Demand on macOS 12.1 Monterey are coming soon: 

    • Files in OneDrive will appear with new status icons
    • Your OneDrive folder will be visible under Locations in the Finder sidebar.
    Mac Finder sidebar with OneDrive selected
  • Overview of Key Parts in OneDrive Setup

    There are a few points of OneDrive Setup that are helpful to watch for.


    1. When setting up OneDrive, it has a default location set. This can be changed this during setup. On the This is your OneDrive folder screen click Change Location.

    OneDrive folder with Change Location button at bottom right

    2. Select a location where you would like to save your OneDrive files and click Choose this location.

    Choose a location for your OneDrive folder.

    3. On This is your OneDrive folder screen, there is now a path to the folder you selected. Click Next to continue.

    This is Your OneDrive Folder with Next button selected in bottom right.


    1. On the Sync Files from Your OneDrive screen, you can choose the folders you want to sync to your computer, and click Next. This conserves space on your computer, and reduces bandwidth needed for the sync processes.

    Sync Files from Your OneDrive

    2. Click Open my OneDrive folder to see your files sync to your folder.

    3. The menu bar displays OneDrive, and there will be a cloud icon for every account you’ve connected to OneDrive. So you’ll have one cloud if you’re only syncing a work or school account, one cloud if you’re syncing only a personal account, or two clouds if you’re syncing both.

    You’ll also see a folder in Finder called OneDrive -- Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

    OneDrive is up to date

    Turn on Finder Integration

    If you’re on OSX 10.10 or higher, get sync status directly from Finder by enabling Finder overlays in Settings.

    1. Click the Apple logo (upper left of Mac Desktop) and select System Preferences, then select Extensions (puzzle piece icon).

    2. Toggle on the OneDrive Finder Integration to enable Finder overlays.

    Extensions window with Finder checked under OneDrive

    3. In Finder, open your OneDrive folder to see overlays on your files and folders.

    OneDrive folders

    Admins can enable sync icon overlays on multiple computers, using this Terminal command:

    /usr/bin/pluginkit -e use -i

  • Sync SharePoint sites

    To sync libraries and folders

    1. Click the Microsoft 365 app launcher, and then click SharePoint.
    2. Click the site that you want to sync.  
    3. Click Documents or navigate to the subfolder that you want to sync.  
    4. Click Sync.  
    5. If your browser requests permission to use Microsoft OneDrive, confirm that this is okay. 
    6. Choose the folders that you want to sync, and then click Start sync.   


    SharePoint team sites sync under a folder named OneDrive -- Worcester Polytechnic Institute.  This folder is automatically added to the left navigation pane in Finder.

    Manage your syncing sites

    You can manage your syncing sites in the sync app settings.

    1. Click the OneDrive icon in the menu bar.
    2. Click Preferences, and then click the Account tab.  
    3. To change the folders that you're syncing, click Choose Folders for that location, and then select the folders that you want to sync.   
    4. To stop syncing a site, click Stop Sync next to the site. (Copies of the files remain on your computer. You can delete them if you want.)  


    Work with your files in your file system

    • Once synced, your SharePoint files appear in File Explorer under the name of your organization (or in Mac Finder if you're using a Mac).
    • Each location will appear in a separate subfolder.
    • Copy or move files from your computer to SharePoint right from your file system.
    • To check the status of your files, add an account, or manage other sync settings, select the blue OneDrive cloud icon in the Windows notification area.