Disable Files On demand by default
Files on demand would have been a great idea 10-15 years ago when disks were small. Now that 1TB and larger disks are commonplace even in lower end laptops, this is just a horrible option. I've found myself forgetting when moving from one device to another to turn this junk off and when I find myself in a place with terrible or non-existent Internet I don't have all my files despite having hundreds of GB free on my disks. At the very least, I should be able to disable this quack feature in 365 globally so when I login it's automatically set for me.
Rich Cocksedge commented
@Chase Roth Thus far I have only been able to find a means of enabling this feature on a Computer basis via the GPO. Ideally I'd like to create a targeted user-based GPO where I can even use an AD group to apply this setting. For example most of our users have desktops and the space on them is far greater then needed. Desktops are 1-to-1 so allowing local files is a help as it will speed up logins. Similarly un-ticking this feature for laptops would allow for these files to be available when traveling or without an internet connection. That said thee may be a scenario where I'd like to NOT maintain that local copy of data...
Has anyone seen or has anyone completed a user-targeted GPO for this?
mark ricker commented
File on Demand by default is the stupidest idea ever. There's nothing worse than thinking your files are on your laptop when you head to a non-internet location only to find out that some random update turned on FoD without notifying you and you DON'T have your critical files after all.
Who thought it would be a good idea to NOT sync files that I explicitly wanted synced... BY DFAULT!!!! C'mon Microsoft. THINK!!!!!
I should be clear about my previous comment, I don't actually think having "Files on Demand" enabled by default would be a bad thing if it was to work logically. On new machines, it makes sense not to download your entire OneDrive account by default. The problem is that this feature is apparently deciding to delete files from your machine (to save space?) even if that machine is the one that originally provided the file to OneDrive. This should never, ever happen. Maybe this needs to be separate feedback.
Somehow this feature became enabled on my laptop, I suspect after I got the update in which it was first released, and it has insidiously been deleting files from my computer until I realised just now. I'm holding back some serious anger here, because enabling this by default was a f**king outrageous thing to do. I intentionally had all of my files on my laptop, and all of a sudden I started noticing that my files weren't physically present anymore. I am paying money every year for OneDrive, and it decides that it knows better than I do what files I should have on my computer? OneDrive decides to delete my original copies of the files without telling me? I don't care if this took me months to notice, and I have been losing infrequently used files from my machine since the fall creator's update (though I don't think this is the case, I've only just noticed it in the past few days like Willem), this is not OneDrive's decision to make. If i have files on my PC, OneDrive should never delete them. Ever.
My company lost a lot of money due to field workers being unable to access essential files offline. Some Windows- or Office update had enabled Files On Demand without any advance notice. What Microsoft is doing essentially, is changing our tools while we are working. We are very impressed by the technical features of Windows and Office and "Software As A Service" is a great concept, but the people responsible at Microsoft have no idea about proper IT Change Management and Service Management. They seem to think that their applications and permanent avalanche of new features are a goal itself. But to us they are just tools, needed to run our own core business. They need to be 100% reliable. Don't treed then like a consumer-targeted smartphone app!
Chase Roth commented
It was off by default when I installed "Windows 10 Education x64 v1709". In any event, most people want SSD's nowadays as the days of clunky slow 5400rpm or 7200rpm drives is dying fast. Yes, you can get 1TB SSD, but schools don't buy 1TB SSD or 5400/7200rpm drives that often as they're oversized and additionally the latter is SLOW. If you do have a 1TB SSD then your paying through the nose for every employees/student. Not viable. Small SSD's are cost effective, provide speed needed and allow for important files to be saved locally with Files On-Demand. If you don't want it you can easily disable it with Group Policy, "Enabled OneDrive Files On-Demand" and setting it to Disabled, but I imagine you'll annoy more users disabling it then as they can't enable it if you turn it off in Group Policy.