1. mj0's Avatar
    So I finally figured out how I might be able to use OneDrive on my laptop at home. However, after toying around with it for a bit it went full retard on me... here's what happened.

    I have an ASUS TransformerBook T200TA convertible with detacheable display at home which I use as both laptop and tablet every now and then. Since the device itself only has 32GB builtin storage but I still had a 250GB Samsung SSD lying around I put it in the harddrive dock underneath the keyboard. So far so good, I know have Windows 10 installed on C: and was able to relocate most of my personal data to E:. This has been working great for months now - I lose access to my music, pictures, videos and documents when undocked and in tablet mode but since I only use it that way to browse the web or read something on the couch it's no big deal. The other day I started toying around with the idea of using OneDrive to save a few documents and pictures into the cloud so they would be accessible from other devices, namely my iPhone and iPad, as well. I started the OneDrive client software on Windows 10, logged in and told it to locate the OneDriver-folder on E: (aforementioned 250GB SSD) instead of C: (internal 32GB eMMC). I also disabled all previously existing OneDrive folders for synchronization (have already been using it occasionally through the web browser to upload/share stuff) except for the empty Pictures folder, meaning that I only had a single folder in my OneDrive directory on my laptop. And since I didn't feel like copying/moving data from my personal pictures/documents folder into the OneDrive folder I used a directory symbolic link using mklink:

    mklink /D E:\Users\username\OneDrive\folder_a E:\Users\username\Pictures\folder_a

    That worked remarkably well and the OneDrive client immediately started synchronizing folder_a into the cloud. Took a while to upload 15GB but it worked, that's the bottom line. That is until a few days later I undocked the device to use it in tablet mode. Since I've been doing this with Dropbox for a while now (my Dropbox folder is also located in E:\Users\username\Dropbox) and never had an issue - upon undocking the Dropbox client recognized its folder is missing and goes into some sort of hibernation until the folder is back - I figured this should work with OneDrive as well. I could not have been more wrong - here's where OneDrive went full retard on me:

    • A few seconds after undocking the OneDrive client running on my laptop noticed its folder was missing, popped up an error message and quit. Expected behavior and nothing to worry about.
    • Everything was working great, I was using the device in tablet mode and after a few hours put it back into its keyboard dock to resume normal operation. OneDrive did not notice anything since the application had terminated itself so I started it manually and went to bed.
    • Without further notice, warning or questions OneDrive now renamed the folder "Pictures" to "Pictures-<hostname>" and started synchronizing everything from the Cloud back onto my SSD. That obviously included the Pictures folder that it had previously synchronized into the Cloud and renamed locally as well as everything else - all the folders that I had deselected during initial setup were now downloading.

    Unfortunately I only noticed that the next morning after it had already downloaded 12GB over night and kept going.

    Lessons learned:

    1. OneDrive is not Dropbox, and the software is not as sophisticated - not by a long shot
    2. OneDrive cannot handle a missing OneDrive folder even for a second - it goes full retard, throws away its preferences and synchronizes everything once the local folder is back thereby creating a mess
    3. There was no way to convince OneDrive that the folder it itself had renamed was infact the very same as the folder in the Cloud. I would've had to redownload all my pictures (15GB in total) that I had uploaded a few days earlier. Renaming the folder back to "Pictures" after unticking every other folder in OneDrive settings again resulted in OneDrive complaining that a folder with the same name already exists (duh!).
    4. Thus it's pretty much completely pointless on systems like my TransformerBook

    I guess I'm just using it wrong ;)
    TechFreak1 and xandros9 like this.
    11-13-2015 08:29 AM
  2. TechFreak1's Avatar
    Interesting post and a lot of handy info there :).

    Looks like when they removed placeholder they downgraded it to the core as well .
    11-13-2015 08:42 AM
  3. onetwright's Avatar
    I have this exact same issue and it's driving me crazy. I FINALLY got ~80GB synced to my external hard drive, and have been closing OneDrive whenever I'm going to disconnect, and only open OneDrive again if the external drive has been connected to my computer. The other day I accidentally unplugged the external drive while OneDrive was open. Got the behavior you mention above. I closed OneDrive and reconnected the drive. Sure enough, to my horror, it's back to trying to sync over 11k files! Completely ridiculous. This in itself has led me to investigate Dropbox. MS is just ******* me off lately.
    12-03-2015 12:39 PM
  4. jeffchapik's Avatar
    What happens if you mark the OneDrive folders as being available "Online Only"? Do you need a local copy on your external drive.
    12-03-2015 01:54 PM
  5. xandros9's Avatar
    What happens if you mark the OneDrive folders as being available "Online Only"? Do you need a local copy on your external drive.
    The Online-Only/Available Offline placeholder feature was removed in the move to Windows 10.
    12-03-2015 04:33 PM
  6. onetwright's Avatar
    While the available online only option was awesome in 8.1 and is probably what got me hooked on OneDrive, that wouldn't help me. I'm actually trying to backup contents to the cloud, and backup cloud contents to a hard drive. I want to have 2 copies of whatever is auto uploaded to OneDrive, and I want to have 2 copies of whatever I drop in my OneDrive folder on the external hard drive.

    The Win8.1 implementation of OneDrive was excellent. It blurred the line between cloud and device, and you only knew which was which in the rare instances that you weren't connected to the internet. I miss that.
    12-03-2015 10:54 PM
  7. jeffchapik's Avatar
    The Online-Only/Available Offline placeholder feature was removed in the move to Windows 10.

    I did not know that. So how do you maintain more data on OneDrive than your local drive can mirror?
    12-04-2015 10:05 AM
  8. xandros9's Avatar
    I did not know that. So how do you maintain more data on OneDrive than your local drive can mirror?
    You can choose not to sync (and not see) selected folders.
    12-04-2015 10:23 AM
  9. onetwright's Avatar
    You can also create a shortcut to your online onedrive folder as a separate drive, but you have to login after every computer re-start (it will ask for credentials before allowing access to the drive), and it's insanely slow (~10s for 1 page worth of photo thumbnails to load, then you scroll to the next page and wait 10s longer, and on and on).
    12-04-2015 12:29 PM

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