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How to move the Microsoft OneDrive folder location in Windows 7

Often folks add secondary hard drives to their computers to free up storage space on their primary hard drives.  As part of this process one would typically move various “data” folders from their primary system drive to a secondary hard drive with a larger capacity.  One such example of this could be moving your Microsoft OneDrive folder and all of its contents from your primary system drive, which is the default install location, to your larger secondary hard drive.  Unfortunately, Microsoft did not make it possible to change the storage location of OneDrive on Windows 7 after you have already installed and are using the application.

Fortunately you can still accomplish this by following a few easy steps that I’ve laid out here:

Step 1:

Locate and right click the OneDrive icon in your Windows 7 system tray.

01-One-Cloud-icon

Step 2:

Choose the Settings option to bring up the OneDrive Settings.

02-OneCloud-Settings

Step 3:

On the main OneDrive Settings tab, click the Unlink OneDrive button.  This, as the option indicates, it will remove the link between your local Windows 7 system and the OneDrive service.  Don’t worry; the local files on your computer won’t be removed by going forward with this process.  They will simply, as the dialog states, be disconnected and no longer kept in sync with the OneDrive service.  When we complete the steps below your local OneDrive folder will re-sync with the OneDrive service.

03-Unlink-OneDrive-settings

After you successfully unlink your local folder from OneDrive, you will be presented with the OneDrive Getting Started dialog.  Keep this dialog open for now until you move the local OneDrive folder on your Windows 7 system, as described in Step 4.

03a-After-OneDrive-unlink

Step 4:

Move the OneDrive folder from the old location on your system to the new drive or desired folder.  The default location is typically C:\Users\<username>\OneDrive.  Move that folder to the desired new location by cutting and pasting.  My folder was moved to D:\Data\OneDrive.

04-Move-OneDrive-Folder
04a-New-OneDrive-Folder-Location

Step 5:

Once you have moved the OneDrive folder to the new destination, return to the OneDrive Getting Started dialog that popped up back in Step 3.

05-Begin-OneDrive-Setup

If you somehow closed or can’t get back to this dialog, you can simply launch the OneDrive setup by finding OneDrive in your Windows 7 Start Menu.  To do this, click the Start icon and type OneDrive into the Start Menu search dialog, and click Microsoft OneDrive once you see it in the search results.

05a-Find-OneDrive-Start-Menu

Sign in to your Microsoft account to get started with your Microsoft OneDrive setup.

05b-OneDrive-login

Step 6:

After signing in, you will be presented with the Introducing your OneDrive folder dialog. From here, click Change to modify the default installation location.

06-Default-OneDrive-location

Step 7:

Select the desired location for your OneDrive folder by browsing with the File Browse dialog.  Find the folder that we relocated in Step 4 and click OK.

07-Choose-OneDrive-folder

Step 8:

Review and confirm that the selected OneDrive folder location that was selected in the previous step and click Next to proceed with the setup.

08-Confirm-OneDrive-folder

Step 9:

Because we moved the old folder and all of the folder contents, the Microsoft OneDrive setup process will present a confirmation dialog indicating that files already exist in this OneDrive folder.  Click the Use this location button to proceed with the installation since we’re aware of this and fine with the fact that these files will be merged with our OneDrive.

09-Merge-OneDrive-files

Step 10:

Finally, choose if you want to sync all of the files in your OneDrive on the local Windows 7 system, or if you want to pick and choose the folders that you wish to sync.  Personally, I opted to sync All files and folders on my OneDrive.  Once you have made your decision, click Next to complete the installation.

10-Confirm-OneDrive-folder-sync

All Done!

At this point you will have successfully moved your local Microsoft OneDrive folder from its original location to a new location of your choice.  Since we moved the original folder rather than creating a new empty folder on the new drive, the sync process between Microsoft OneDrive and your local folder should be minimal.

Enjoy!

17 thoughts on “How to move the Microsoft OneDrive folder location in Windows 7

  1. Thanks for the update! This was very useful information presented in a clear way, just when I needed it too.

  2. Thank you! Your instructions were very helpful. I just moved my OneDrive folder to another partition because my Data partition was getting full. You saved me from having to do a disk partition any time soon. I kicked that can down the road for a bit longer.

    Thanks again for the clear instructions! 🙂

  3. Awesome, thanks a lot for this very useful tutorial and clear explanations!
    worked 100%
    🙂
    Matt

  4. Hi,
    I’ve followed all the steps, but unfortunately @ step 7 I’ve the following message : “Your OneDrive folder can’ be created in the location you selected”… please could you give some info?

    Many thanks

  5. Do you know what happens when merging, that is, which files have priority, those already in the cloud or those from the hard drive? I’m asking because I stopped for a few days syncing a big folder (10gb) I’m actively working in, and I want to reconnect it now, and since most of the files are already online, I was thinking just to merge – but I don’t want to lose the updates in the files I made in the meantime.

  6. I did step 7:
    Select the desired location for your OneDrive folder by browsing with the File Browse dialog. Find the folder that we relocated in Step 4 and click OK.

    But i my case, it created a SECOND OneDrive folder in the same directory.

    In your example, your new OneDrive folder is in the DataDisk (D:) directory. So in Step 7, would you have selected the DataDisk (D:) directory (because THAT is the LOCATION of the OneDrive folder, which is what’s being asked for in this step), OR do you actually select the OneDrive folder?

    Those are 2 very different things. Based on the way the setup question is worded in the wizard, if you actually selected the OneDrive folder, then a new OneDrive folder would be created INSIDE the OneDrive folder you already created. The wizard appears to be asking for the LOCATION (directory) where your existing OneDrive folder currently resides. But when I did that (I pointed the wizard to my “DataDrive (J:)” where I already had a OneDrive folder, it created a NEW OneDrive folder!! I don’t even know how Windows can have 2 folders with the exact same name existing in the same directory, but that’s what it did.

    I’d greatly appreciate any help you can offer. At this moment, OneDrive is downloading from the cloud, into the new OneDrive folder 25GB and 15,000 files worth of content – even though it’s already on my machine, in my original, existing OneDrive folder.

    What do I do now? I can’t wait for 25GB to download and my ISP is going to throttle me for it anyway.

    Thanks.

  7. <>

    I decided to go through the whole process again. I unlinked OneDrive per step 3. Then in Explorer I renamed the newly (and erroneously) created OneDrive folder OneDriveWrong.

    Then in step 7 I actually selected my existing OneDrive folder which, according to the instructions in the wizard and this tutorial is NOT what I should be doing since I’m being asked to select the LOCATION of my folder. But in fact, by selecting the actual OneDrive folder itself, I got the dialog box shown in step 9 above.

    It went through the rest of the wizard and in the final step, I was logged out and disconnected AGAIN! So I had to go through the wizard all over again. This time, it “stuck” and I was left with OneDrive once again pointed to the correct, existing folder and though the icon in the tray indicated there was syncing going on, that didn’t in fact happen since my local folder already matched the cloud folder. But at least the 25GB transfer was halted.

    Incidentally, this process renamed my existing OneDrive folder to “SkyDrive”!!! How’s that for stupid? After rebooting, I also got a notice on the tray icon that said that I needed to “upgrade” OneDrive. I declined since I have no idea what that’s about. Would very much appreciate any info you have on that. My current version according to the settings window is: Version 2015 (Build 17.3.5951.0827) as of today, Oct 8, 2015.

    After rebooting again, I deleted the OneDriveWrong folder since it was no longer needed.

    I hope this helps someone since I couldn’t really find anything to help me besides this article and as stated above, Step 7 here needs clarification.

  8. So the install UI always requires that the sync directory end in /OneDrive What if i already have a directory that i want to be the synced top folder. For example, i have a directory where i put my mane work. C:\stuff\important I want that directory path and every sub folder to be synced so that i always have my “important” files on my computer AND on onedrive for remote access. Is there any way to hack it to use that directory instead of having to create a \OneDrive directory?

  9. Just wanted to say thanks. This is about 7th page “http://www.donkitchen.com/2015/02/12/how-to-change-onedrive-folder-windows7/” about how to change onedrive save location on windows 7 i have visited, all the others were incorrect or outdated. You saved my sanity! 😀

  10. Thank you Don for your kind and easy to follow instructions. My external high capacity hard drive volume letter changed from E: to G:. I am not clear why, but it happened while the drive was connected and I plugged in a USB memory stick. Anyway, I was not sure how to get the external high capacity drive to sync again without changing the drive volume letter back to E:, which I was afraid to do on my own. The drive appears to be syncing again.

  11. This is great however it’s only for a Personal Account (am I right), I’m having a problem with the OneDrive Business account. I mistakenly unlinked it and now I get the message “A folder named “OneDrive -…” already exists in D:. Please choose a different location”. Any ideas how to relink it without having to download all the files again from the cloud?

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