OneDrive's file placeholders will return to Windows 10 as On-Demand Sync

OneDrive's file placeholders will return to Windows 10 as On-Demand Sync

It’s official: OneDrive placeholders are coming back to Windows, but with a new name. Microsoft made the announcement on Monday during Ignite, the company’s conference for IT professionals. The new feature will be called On-Demand Sync when it comes to Windows 10.

If you aren’t familiar with the concept behind OneDrive placeholders (or On-Demand Sync), it’s a feature that allows you to see all your OneDrive-stored files in the Windows File Explorer. Even if a file isn’t stashed on your device's local hard drive it will still be visible when you open the OneDrive folder in File Explorer. If you open a file that isn't saved locally, OneDrive immediately downloads it from the cloud—at least in Windows 8.1.

There’s no word on when the feature will roll out, but the likeliest candidate at this point appears to be the Redstone 2 update expected to roll out in spring 2017.

Based on an image snapped by MSPoweruser, On-Demand Sync will work similarly to what Dropbox showed off in April with Dropbox Infinite. When you open your OneDrive folder there will be several possible icons next to each file.

The most common icon right now is a green check mark that confirms the file is synced to OneDrive. A set of blue circular arrows, meanwhile, indicates the file is uploading to OneDrive.

When On-Demand Sync rolls out there will also be a gray OneDrive cloud, which tells you that the file is in OneDrive but not yet downloaded to your PC—you might call this last option a “placeholder.” Right-clicking a file will present you with an option to store it offline or enable online syncing, according to WinBeta.

Why this matters: Microsoft’s previous iteration of placeholders was somewhat confusing for users, but for those who figured it out it was a great advantage. On-Demand Sync will hopefully make it easier for users to understand what’s going on. For power users, the upcoming feature is a far better solution than the current situation in Windows 10, where you can only see items in File Explorer that have been synced to your PC. Everything you've stashed in OneDrive but declined to sync locally can only be seen on OneDrive.com or the OneDrive Windows Store app.

IDG Insider

PREVIOUS ARTICLE

«Power BI gets robust mapping with ArcGIS

NEXT ARTICLE

Google Pixel image leaked, revealing new home screen and rounded icons»
author_image
IDG Connect

IDG Connect tackles the tech stories that matter to you

Add Your Comment

Most Recent Comments

Our Case Studies

IDG Connect delivers full creative solutions to meet all your demand generatlon needs. These cover the full scope of options, from customized content and lead delivery through to fully integrated campaigns.

images

Our Marketing Research

Our in-house analyst and editorial team create a range of insights for the global marketing community. These look at IT buying preferences, the latest soclal media trends and other zeitgeist topics.

images

Poll

Will Kotlin overtake Java as the most popular Android programming language in 2018?