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How can we improve the OneDrive app on Android?

Folder sync

Why not make the mobile version just like the Desktop app?

You should be able to select a folder (or multiple folders) from your mobile device and OneDrive should upload all the files (not just photos or videos) in that folder automatically and every time you modify one of the files in that folder or add a new file, it should automatically sync it with the cloud.

Unbelievably, OneDrive, nor Dropbox nor Google Drive currently offer such feature. You can only get this feature with a third party app like FolderSync (paid app - Android).

This should be a native feature. Add it.


7,322 votes
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    R shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    closed  ·  AdminRyan Hoge (Group Program Manager, Microsoft) responded  · 

    There are several things being talked about in this suggestion and in the comments.

    1. Bring Camera upload to OneDrive for Business users. That is in progress and we have another item tracking this in the iOS category.
    2. Allow Camera upload to work for different local photo locations. This is supported now.
    3. Support taking OneDrive files and folders offline. This is supported today including saving to the SD card if the app is installed there.
    4. Allow arbitrary syncing of non photo local folders to OneDrive storage locations, We have no plans to bring this type of capability to Android devices.


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      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        It is unacceptable that you have less features in a paid service than the free. In addition, the camera upload is a very good standard feature that are already available for all competitors even in Business accounts.I work in a very large chemistry company , Employees can not automatically upload photo documentation of production equipment from a mobile device to onedrive. Should I tell the colleagues they have to create a private account ????

      • Josh commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        This feature is stopping me from deploying One drive currently. Due to this I will be deploying another option. I have no intentions on waiting for someone to "Think about it" and decide that it is needed. It has over 7300 votes and has been sitting here for over a year.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Why cant I just tell onedrive to ignore any files in a specific folder? I do a lot of video editing which takes up loads of space (far more than my limit) and I don't keep the entire video - I just edit them for the bits I want to keep then publish them to youtube or save them separately. Ive just put 3 files on my laptop which are about 12 gb (4K res, approx. 45 minutes worth) and its trying to back them up even though that is way over my limit and will mostly end up being deleted, just keeping maybe 5 minutes of the total video!

      • Metali commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        It has been almost a year, the votes are overwhelming, the requirement is a basic one and you are still "THINKING ABOUT IT"??!!


      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Don't "THINK ABOUT IT" Douglas; your app did LITERALLY THIS a month ago. Additional folders went to...drumroll...ADDITIONAL FOLDERS. Now you just dump them in the "Camera" folder. Sort your ish out guys and fix this bug

      • Russell commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Please add this feature asap. I was ready to start using Onedrive for all my documents (business and personal), and really need this feature to use on my phone. I have a Office 365 Business Premium account and want to start using Onedrive on my phone. But the lack of picture sync is preventing this. I can't understand you're not supported this. Every major file sync service supports this. Why not Microsoft?

      • Sergio Enriquez commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        This is one of the 2 most important feature we need...

        The second one is that currently, the photo roll sinc is a mess, it syncs al pictures from the selected folder to a one single folder on my onedrive named "album de camara" but it doesn't split into the same folder structure, it puts ALL photos and videos from all of the included sources onto same root folder..
        It is a very big mess, I Wish to have it splitted on folders named as the source is named, because I sync all availabe and suggested folder on onedrive app, but the information on each synced source is different!!
        Yes, all are photos or graphics like meme's, jokes, charts, etc., and yes sometimes I receive family phtos over whatsapp, but these are the less times, so it would be easier for me to clean my onedrive if the source is splitted.

      • Stephen Day commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Sounds like something I've been wishing to happen for a while. I'd like, maybe Android OneDrive app for O365 to have the option to automatically default to selecting :

        \Internal shared storage\DCIM
        \Internal shared storage\Documents
        \Internal shared storage\Download
        \Internal shared storage\Movies
        \Internal shared storage\Music
        \Internal shared storage\Pictures

        And then the user have the option to unselect, or select additional folders/subfolders as they desire. I would like an "android" folder, with a nice "android" icon. And how about an iphone for iphone users.

        The data should always be in sync with both, both ways. Even when the phone has been wiped, and O365 one drive setup again ... it should sync back down to the phone.

        Thanks to the user who submitted this request.

      • Pawel commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        This is my use case:
        - Using android mobile phone with 64 GB of internal storage (i do not consider adding SD card as 64 GB storage for me is more than enough)
        - Syncing photos from my phone (Camera backup) to my OneDrive Personal (live account).
        - I want to sync archival photos that I keep on my PC/Laptop to the same OneDrive account (over 250 GB of photos and videos)
        - I also want the 250 GB of sync photos to happen only between PC and OneDrive, but I do not have enough storage on my android to sync it there,
        - I am not able to exclude the folder with 250 GB of photos on my android device. It keeps syncing until crashes with no more storage available.

        I am looking for OneDrive solution that will allow me to control which folders to sync to which device, especially android.

        I recently got enterprise OneDrive just to learn that it does not support Camera Roll sync on my Android. So I purchased yesterday O365 license to have 1 TB of storage in OneDrive.
        Just to learn I cannot use it with this configuration because:
        - if I enable Camera Roll sync on my phone - it syncs all folders from OneDrive to my phone,
        - and I sync over 250 GB of data from my PC to OneDrive - I do not have that much space on my Android device to sync and I cannot exclude these folders.

        Request to Microsoft:
        1. Can you start respecting your users money? I just wasted my money on annual O365 subscription which is useless in very general case scenario.
        2. Can you hire people who think about users and their case scenarios?

        I just learned hard lesson how bad is OneDrive if it comes to simple things.
        I wasted money on O365 Enterprise subscription just to learn I need personal subscription for Camera Roll backup. Then I wasted money on O365 personal subscription just to learn I cannot use it because I cannot select which folders to sync.

        Completely useless solution.

      • Bradavon commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Phones and Tablets are different from PCs. It's a nice idea but if you're not careful users will easily starting filling up their device storage and crashing their devices.

      • ATimmons commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Pt. 2. See pt 1 below. They didn't tell me there was a length limit until I finished writing. So pt 2 posted after pt 1.

        But this is "Why this won't work like you might think"
        or A quick crash course in Mobile vs. Traditional PC architecture - your phone is not a computer (and vise versa)

        The last reason is stability. If you're still reading, I'm impressed. Kudos. Let me know you made it this far. Imagine our same office layout. The walls are steel or concrete. If an office catches on fire, the rest are probably fine. You gut the office and rebuild it, (close the app and reopen, or worse, reinstall when an app crashes) but the rest carries on as normal. The open office, if your desk catches on fire, well mine might too if we share some of the office resources. The fire might spread. So a phone is stable when an app crashes. Windows and Mac have both moved in this direction, Linux as well (though they've sort of always been there) from the early days. You might remember the early Win95 or 3.1 days when if explorer crashed, the whole computer crashed and had to be restarted. Now things are much better compartmentalized, and total system crashes are rare, a big difference from the days when Windows got its reputation for instability. Browsers do this now too. Each tab is compartmentalized from the other. This means Chrome takes up **Massive** amounts of RAM, but it so much cheaper and abundant now anyway. If a website crashes, the rest carry on. At the same time, the mobile space has started to open up some. There's probably a happy medium there somewhere. And as our mobile devices become more powerful like computers, and our computers become more mobile like Phones (like we are /already/ seeing) then we will eventually reach that space. There's still a pretty big gulf.

        Soooooo. All that to say, you can't just put a file sharing app on top of a file system on a mobile device because strictly speaking that file system doesn't exist. Especially on iOS. It might exist within an app- where folder x is inside folder y and holds these docs. But that's a creation of that app. Really they exist in a pile in the back end. And you wouldn't really want this either. As you start linking things up like you've suggested, you damage all three. So now, if your photo sharing app has a fault and does something screwy, then it might feed weird info to the one drive app. The one drive app would become unstable and unreliable, and your kitten photo editing software that also connects to one drive to grab photos might start getting unexpected data and calls from the one drive app which it also plugs into. Now all three are becoming unstable. And maybe more besides- and all of a sudden you have your 4 compartments full of water in the titanic and your phone starts to sink, right in the middle of you snapping a photo down your shorts in the bathroom at work, causing it to send the photo to all your coworkers. Next thing you know you are out of a job and living by the side of the river out of a van.

      • ATimmons commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Pt 1/2 -note: these might post in reverse order...

        Why this won't work like you think.

        The file system in mobile is vastly different than a PC that you are used to. Things are encapsulated, for security reasons, within each app.

        So, one app cannot access another Apps data unless there is an explicit portal to transfer some specific data through. Photos app has lots of portals. But you can tell this when say you have a document saved in program X and want to open it in Y. Y can't get the file. Try and get at your saved files for Game Z or your saved Instagram photos. You can't do it.

        Its gotten a little better with Documents on iPhone. Android has a more traditional file structure, but that file structure you can navigate is separate from the back end file structure where the apps are stores.

        Its a design paradigm. One that Microsoft really spear headed. On a PC / Mac (to a slightly lesser extent), definitely Linux, you have files. You open applications to use on that file. So, an application is a tool. You want to crop a picture you open snipping tool or something. Then you want to color balance it- open Photoshop, and then close the file. Then you want to send it, open a browser, then use the browser to open a web app, then send it. Etc.

        On mobile, the 'Apps' and the files are one and the same. They don't communicate the same way. They aren't meant to. PC/Mac/Windows have defined file types. In the mobile space, each app is free to build their own file types, just reverting back to the standards when they want to share.

        Depending on your age, you may remember this. Remember when 'Apps' were a big deal with the 1st iPhone (or 3rd I think actually). You got your apps. Your friends told you about cool apps. You collected your apps. Each App takes up one square. That's it. They all run in their bubble. When multi-tasking on the phone was invented- they didn't do a "desktop" or workspace- they did a home screen (a bubble in and of itself) and then the app bubbles that you can swap through.

        As phones have matured, we've gotten more multi-tasking and background tasks (background operation was a big deal when it came out- iPhone 5 and Gingerbread maybe- I don't recall.) The newest iPad Pros and Chromebooks can run two apps or more simultaneously, but that is literally brand new.

        There are some good reasons for this. 3 main ones, performance, security and stability.

        Performance. Early mobile devices, and really still all of them are pretty dinky machines. It seems like they do a lot, but its not as much as you might think. Your desktop pc might have thousands of threads on it at the same time all being shuffled around and vying for resources. Even playing a videogame, things are going on in the background. A lot of things. On mobile, only what you are looking at is working. There's a handful of system and other app threads running in the background. Power management, email, other apps (now-a-days), location tracking, and NSA/Russia browsing your pics for nudes (for "national security"). And then there's the application you are using, which is another handful of threads. So total, by focusing on one main application, and the rest running in the spare time, we get high efficiency and the appearance of high performance while using a processor/chipset/ram that uses a small fraction of the power. ARM cores are coming up, but they still don't hold a candle to a desktop or even laptop processor. But a mobile battery would power one of those for mere minutes. No good.

        2. Security- with everything, by design, encapsulated and encrypted, you can't have (or less often you have) rouge programs, viruses, websites, stealing your data. If you design it from the ground up to not allow access outside of its compartment, then its hard to hack your way out. As opposed to Windows/Linux where everything is wide open (relatively speaking). They've become more compartmentalized over the years for security (and stability- the last one). Imagine a bunch of people in an open office with a bunch of desks. It'd be pretty easy for you to sneak over and steal Dwight's stapler and encase it in Jell-O. But if everyone had their own closed office, badge access only, with only certain sized holes (where only a 6" round shape poster tube opening -imagine an app sharing photos) then only certain things can get in and out. The OS has the master key, but your app doesn't. You can always kill the groundskeeper and steal his keys by rooting the device, but its not as easy to steal a stapler that way, let alone something sensitive.

        Continued. in pt 2.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        please add picture sync to Onedrive for Business. In Today's world pictures are a large part of business for planning, sharing, social media etc. Pictures are an essential part of running a business and sharing our business story with customers. Please add this capability ASAP!

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        This is probably the most imp chage that can be brought about by onedrive... folder to folder sync is what makes sense.

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