Reassess the possibility to ignore or exclude selected OneDrive folders and files from the sync process.
It would be great to be able to ignore or exclude selected files and folders within the OneDrive folder from syncing. It has been requested a few times before and solves user problems in a variety of areas: from software developers having problems with temporary build files and node_modules folders, through users who want to ignore sync problems (or issues like waiting days for a file to upload on a slow connection) by ignoring files in sync, to users who want to ignore files and folders created by applications, especially photo applications. There are many use cases where this feature would be a solution.
It might also be the case that a feature would reduce the number of support requests and user dissatisfaction, since users would have a way to fix various issues themselves (there is probably more applicable scenarios than described above) by desyncing a file or folder causing problems.
I know this feature has been requested before, and has received the status 'not right now', therefore I have termed this request 'reassess', to determine if the 'not right now' status is still the state of this feature request. I have collected the IDs of the uservoice requests for which this feature would be a solution (listed at the end of the request), summing the votes on these requests, this feature has a total of 549 votes, which would place at about the 35th position, among other requests which have status of 'working on it' or 'thinking about it'.
Thanks for your consideration!
The IDs of the related uservoice issues are: 6988070,10720758,10932591,10778649,10954851,11301837,11344905,11654178,13452462,15748891,17236724,8026992,15017205,17169314,18429295,7290507,11625105,12915153,13541754,16044514,7927728
This feature has rolled out for files (https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/onedrive/use-group-policy#exclude-specific-kinds-of-files-from-being-uploaded) and we are looking to expanding it to folders in the future.
Donald Hawthorn commented
I would like to exclude a whole Disc. The disc is being used to store File History. I don't want to back up to the Cloud something I've already backed up to a hard disc. with an upload speed of about 1Mb/, the Cloud back up has already taken a month!
Just let me do it from the OneDrive Task Bar menu please. Also, final implementation should be the right click context menu of a file or folder.
Some games cache directly to my Documents folder, so constant uploading using my bandwidth. Game screenshots and assets files appear in "My Photos" on my Phone. Exactly what I don't want.
Just hurry up already.
I'm using Onedrive on my personal PC, backing up my documents, photos, etc, folders, and I've encountered an issue where some games are saving image files to the Documents folder. These resultant images are ending up the "Photos" view with no way to exclude folders from being added to this view, and thus rendering the Photos view useless.
If I wanted to include every single sprite, icon and bacground image on my PC in the Photos view, I'd tell Onedrive to backup my entire C: drive and be done with it.
Shadetree Sam commented
Because backing up files to OneDrive cloud servers is an effective way to recover from a ransomware attack, the explosive growth in those attacks has made the real-time file syncing feature in OneDrive much more significant.
This kind of information is normally included in the business case for implementing a new feature, because it speaks to the added value, cybersecurity impact, and priority of the update. The feature suggestion was made a long time ago (someone said four years ago), and the business case for implementation was probably made before ransomware was as rampant as it is today. My suggestion is that the business case be reexamined and, if needed, updated, and that the project's priority be adjusted as appropriate.
Shadetree Sam commented
The last update from Microsoft about this feature was six months ago, and it was to announce that the feature was partially rolled out. If I understood the update correctly, it allows Active Directory administrators to exclude files, but not folders, from syncing with OneDrive cloud storage. The AD requirement also means that Microsoft 365 Home Edition users cannot make any use of the feature yet.
As partial implementations go, this is quite partial indeed. Has there been any progress since the last update?
In my opinion the current implementation is very limited. I would like to see a .gitignore style implementation where a user could add a ".oneignore" file at any level and then ignore files / folders which meet the relative path patterns specified in that file
I would really like to ignore .git folders, node_module folders, vendor folder, temporary and cache files in my development environments.
That's a lot of stuff just for one project. I have lots of projects. The amount of unnecessary files and folders synced by OneDrive is insane.
I'm using OneDrive with Microsoft 365 on Windows 10 Home. As far as I can see, I do not have access to the admin bits required to tell OneDrive not to sync certain files.
So no, this feature has _not_ rolled out for files, it's available to a limited set of users but most people do not have this Admin Center available.
I have tried this feature and would like to use it but it has an annoying bug. If some files are deselected to not be synched, the OneDrive places a big red cross on the cloud icon to say that it is not synched.
How about changing the colour to warn me that I am not synching all files in a folder but dont flag it as a fault
Jeremiah van Oosten commented
As a teacher and software developer, I would also really appreciate the ability to be able to ignore specific folders from syncing.
The files and folder patterns to ignore should be saved (online) so that I don't have to configure them again for every different computer I install OneDrive on.
@Gaia, you said "... allow *admins* to exclude files ...". Do you mean company admins, computer admins? Why would I need "admin" privileges to configure which files & folders I want to ignore for my own OneDrive folders?
Excluding user-selectable directories would solve problems I have with large engineering simulation results directories (> 150 GB). Moving the directories elsewhere creates issues with some of the software packages. Typically, the directories can be moved, but it often creates annoying side effects like having to manually select the results directory path every time you start the software.
Its been 4.5 years and still Microsoft is working on this simple feature. OneDrive is mainly about Backup, Sync, and Collaboration. Some important features which are mainly enhance user experience are neglected by Microsoft. While other companies have gone way ahead with excellent features
Jakub Homola commented
I need to share this here: https://onedrive.uservoice.com/forums/913522-onedrive-on-windows/suggestions/38614564-my-proposal-for-exactly-how-a-gitignore-like-sy
it suggests the perfect way to implement this feature - .OneDriveIgnore files.
OneDrive team at Microsoft, you have the solution already served on the plate, you just have to write the code. Is it really that difficult?
If there are some big problems with implementing this much-needed feature, please tell us what it is. This way you would show that it is really hard to implement and we would (maybe) understand why it takes so long. Now it seems like you just dont care about us.
Needs to be end user controllable, support both files and folders, and have better than DOS filemask capabilities. In short, think ".gitignore".
The feature being available to Domain Admins is nice, But what about users not being part of a domain. How do they exclude certain files or folders on their own?
Lucas Reis commented
For those who want to backup their codes ignoring dev folders like node_modules, vendor, builds etc, I am now using https://www.seafile.com/en/home/
It does a really good job, a cheap VPS with 1GB RAM should be enough.
Chris Glass commented
Just adding my voice to this. Certain applications have major issues with syncing, (Like the Rockstar Game Launcher) and other documents, I just want to avoid entirely, like my GitHub directory. That changes too much for syncing to be worthwhile. Especially when I'm downloading excessive amounts of data to it.
Being able to manually exclude folders would make my day.
I don't want or need at least 75% of my PC files backed up to OneDrive. I literally don't want it to happen. I only want to save specific photos and documents. It's unusable as it is, always completely full of stuff I don't even want there. It blows my mind that deleting a file from OneDrive deletes it from my actual PC. My internet upload speed is the fastest I can get, but if I'm working with large audio files and OneDrive sees fit to upload them, I can't actually use the internet for browsing or streaming at the same time. Bear in mind I live in a fairly large city in the the UK. Pausing the upload is only a temporary fix for an unnecessary, repeating problem as it can't be paused indefinitely. Please, please add a reliable and user-friendly way to deselect files or folders for upload to the cloud. It's 2021.
I can't understand how difficult it is for Microsoft to implement functions like .gitignore. Several years after this requirement was put forward, most people are obviously not satisfied with the solution given by Microsoft now.