When did OneDrive last sync your files? How to force OneDrive to sync (all Windows versions)

Although we like the OneDrive service and we use it on our Windows devices, there are a few quirks that we have trouble with. One of it is the fact that it is difficult to figure out how to convince OneDrive to manually synchronize your files right now, without waiting for it to discover your newly added files in a couple of minutes. Another quirk is that sometimes you need to know when it performed the last synchronization so that you have an idea whether it has synchronized the latest files you have added or not. Here is how to do both these things, regardless of whether you use Windows 10, Windows 8.1 or Windows 7:

NOTE: This tutorial covers the use of OneDrive in Windows 10, Windows 7 and Windows 8.1. Most things are the same in Windows 10 and Windows 7, so we are using mostly screenshots taken in Windows 10 to illustrate the instructions for these two operating systems. Windows 8.1 works differently, so it gets its special section, at the end of this article.

How to learn when your OneDrive files were last synced, in Windows 10 and Windows 7

If you are using Windows 10 or Windows 7 and you want to check when your files last synchronized, click or tap once on the OneDrive icon from the taskbar notification area.

This action opens a window in which OneDrive shows which were the last actions that it performed. For each of the files that were synced, you can see how far back in time that happened.

In Windows 7, the OneDrive app looks similar to the one in Windows 10, as you can see in the screenshot below.

Note that this is the only way we know of for finding when OneDrive last synchronized your files both in Windows 10 and Windows 7.

In Windows 10, there is also a OneDrive app in the Microsoft Store, that is different from the desktop application. However, the app from the Microsoft Store does not offer any information regarding the last sync time.

How to manually synchronize your OneDrive files in Windows 10 and Windows 7 (The fast and easy way)

If you are using Windows 10 or Windows 7, triggering a manual sync for you OneDrive files is easy, although it is not intuitive. All you have to do is stop the OneDrive app and then start it again. To stop it, right-click (or tap and hold) on its icon from the taskbar notification area and then press “Quit OneDrive.”

Then, start OneDrive again. Both in Windows 10 and Windows 7, a quick way to do this is to look for the OneDrive shortcut in the Start Menu.

Once you find it, click or tap on it, and OneDrive starts to synchronize your files immediately.

How to force OneDrive to sync your files in Windows 10 and Windows 7 (The hard way)

If for whatever reason, you cannot follow the steps we described in the previous section, there is also another way to sync your OneDrive files in Windows 10 and Windows 7. It is a bit more complicated, but it involves similar actions: stop and restart the OneDrive.

Open the Task Manager and go to the Processes tab. Then, find the OneDrive process, right-click on it and select “End Task,” to stop its process.

In the same Task Manager window, open the File menu and click or tap on “Run new task.”

Task Manager now launches a new window, called “Create new task.” In the Open field, type this command: %localappdata%\Microsoft\OneDrive\OneDrive.exe. Then, press Enter on your keyboard or click or tap OK.

OneDrive's process should now start again. Once it is launched, it automatically triggers a file check and, if any change is detected, it also starts syncing your files.

How to learn when your OneDrive files were last synced, in Windows 8.1

In Windows 8.1, a quick way to find out when your files last synchronized by OneDrive is to use its icon from the taskbar notifications area. Click or tap on it and, in the small flyout that opens up, you should see a message like this one: “Last updated 2 minutes ago”.

Another way to find the same information is to use the OneDrive app. Open it with a click or a tap on its tile on the Start screen.

On OneDrive’s start page, look for a link that says “All files are up to date.” You should find it in the upper-right corner of the window.

Click or tap on the link. It should take you to an app page called Progress. This is where you can see whether there are any pending actions and whether all actions are complete. If there are no pending actions, OneDrive informs you when it was last updated.

How to force OneDrive to sync your files in Windows 8.1

If you want to force OneDrive to manually start the synchronization of your files without waiting for it to trigger this process automatically, click or tap on its icon from the taskbar notifications area, and then press the Sync link.

You can also force a sync from inside the OneDrive app. Follow the steps from the previous section of this tutorial and, on the Progress page, press the Sync button.

This makes OneDrive check for changes, and it automatically uploads and downloads the changed files.

When the update process is over, you get a notification that “All actions are complete” and you are shown how long ago the update process was finished.

Have you encountered other issues using OneDrive in Windows?

We hope that you have found this guide useful. If you know of other ways to learn when OneDrive synced your files, or if there are any quirks related to OneDrive that you need help with, let us know in the comments section below. We will do our best to help.