Microsoft introduces OneDrive offline mode for web users with work and school accounts

Microsoft has taken another step towards improving the productivity of OneDrive users by introducing a new offline mode for the web version. This feature is designed specifically for work and school accounts and provides continuous access to files even when an internet connection is not available. Let’s dive into the details:

What is OneDrive offline mode?

OneDrive’s offline mode allows users to perform various tasks without relying on an active internet connection. Whether you’re in a remote location or dealing with intermittent connectivity, this feature ensures you can keep working efficiently. Here’s what it offers you: 

  1. Access key views and file information:
    • When you’re offline, you can open and interact with the following views in OneDrive:
      1. House
      2. My files
      3. Shared
      4. Saves
      5. People
      6. Meeting
    • View folder names, file metadata (such as owner, size, recent activity, and date of last opening), and other relevant information.
    • Rename, sort, move, or copy files in the My Files view. These changes will sync to OneDrive once you reconnect to the internet.
    • Open locally stored Office and non-Office files (files marked as “available offline”) in their native apps and make changes.
  2. Performance improvements even with an Internet connection:
    • Offline mode also enhances your experience when you have an internet connection:
      1. Designate files or folders as available for offline access directly from OneDrive for the web.
      2. Free up local storage space by making local files or folders online-only from OneDrive for the web.
      3. Experience up to 3x faster load times when viewing and interacting with your files in OneDrive through your browser or the OneDrive app in Microsoft Teams and Outlook.
      4. Previously, some of these actions were only possible in File Explorer (on PC) or Finder (on Mac), but now you can do them directly in OneDrive for the web.
  3. Local Cache and Performance Optimization:
    • Offline mode takes advantage of a local cache stored on your device:
      1. The OneDrive Sync app intelligently stores metadata (file names, size, authors, last accessed dates) locally.
      2. This cache greatly speeds up OneDrive load times in your browser and improves viewing and interaction with your files.

How to set OneDrive to offline mode:

  1. Make sure you have the latest OneDrive sync app installed on your Windows or macOS device.
  2. Go to OneDrive on the web using Chrome or Edge.
  3. The first visit will automatically trigger a one-time setup of offline mode.

On-demand file integration:

OneDrive’s offline mode complements the existing Files On-Demand feature, which allows you to control the availability of files in your browser. You can now select specific files to always be available on your computer, even when you’re working online.


While offline mode is currently available for work and school accounts, Microsoft plans to expand it to consumers in the future.

In summary, Microsoft’s OneDrive offline mode allows users to stay productive regardless of the state of their internet connection. Whether you’re organizing files, collaborating with colleagues, or accessing critical documents, OneDrive has you covered, even when the Wi-Fi signal drops. Try it out and experience the convenience for yourself!

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