How to Stop Onedrive Sync

As a cloud storage service, OneDrive is one of the best. This is especially true because of the Files-on Demand feature. However, if you already use another cloud service like Google Drive, you might not want to use OneDrive. In those cases, here’s how to stop OneDrive sync in Windows.

The best thing is, when you stop OneDrive sync, you don’t have to uninstall OneDrive. That way, you get the best of both worlds.

If you are wondering, it is relatively easy to stop OneDrive sync. There are several ways you can prevent OneDrive sync. For example, you can use the group policy editor, pause OneDrive sync, unsync specific folders, unlink the OneDrive account, and uninstall OneDrive. I will show all these methods. Follow the one you like.

Let me show you how to stop OneDrive sync in the Windows operating system without further ado.

Table of contents:

Stop OneDrive sync temporarily

You can stop the OneDrive sync temporarily, i.e., for 2, 8, and 24 hours. This method is beneficial if you are actively using OneDrive but want to stop the sync temporarily for whatever reason. Once the set time is over, OneDrive starts the sync automatically. Here is how to do it.

  1. Right-click on the OneDrive icon on the taskbar.
  2. Click on the “Pause syncing” dropdown menu.
  3. Choose the pause time.
  4. With that, you stopped OneDrive sync temporarily.

To un-pause, wait for the pause time to end or right-click on the OneDrive icon on the taskbar and click on the “Resume syncing” option.

Fully stop OneDrive sync from Group Policy

To stop OneDrive sync, we can use the group policy editor. All you have to do is change a specific OneDrive policy.

Important note: Group Policy Editor is only available on Pro, Education, and Enterprise editions. It is not available on the Home edition.

  1. Press the “Start key + R” shortcut.
  2. Type “gpedit.msc” and click “Ok.”
  3. Go to the “Computer Configurations -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> OneDrive” folder.
  4. Double-click the “Prevent the usage of OneDrive for file storage” policy
  5. Choose the “Enabled” radio option.
  6. Press the “Apply” button.
  7. Close the policy editor.
  8. Reboot the computer.
  9. With that, OneDrive sync is stopped.

Open the Run dialog box (Win + R) from the Start menu. Next, type gpedit.msc in the empty field and click the Ok button to open the Group Policy Editor.

Stop onedrive sync 01

You will see a bunch of folders on the left panel. Go to the following folder.

Computer Configurations -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> OneDrive

In the OneDrive folder, you will find policies related to OneDrive management. Find and double-click on the “Prevent the usage of OneDrive for file storage” policy.

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Select the Enabled radio option from the properties window.

Click on the Apply and Ok buttons to save the policy changes.

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Even though the policy has been changed, it is not yet applied. For that, restart Windows.

That is it. You’ve successfully stopped OneDrive sync.

Unsync specific OneDrive folders

OneDrive lets you selectively sync a few specific folders. For instance, you can do that if you just want to sync your documents folder. This option enables you to unsync unnecessary folders. Let me show you how to do it.

  1. Right-click on the OneDrive icon on the taskbar.
  2. Choose the “Settings” option.
  3. Go to the “Account” tab.
  4. Click the “Choose folders” button.
  5. Uncheck the folder you don’t want to sync.
  6. Click the “Ok” button.
  7. With that, you have stopped OneDrive sync for unnecessary folders.

Right-click on the OneDrive icon on the taskbar and select the Settings option. If there is no OneDrive icon, launch the application by searching for it in the start menu.

Stop onedrive sync 04

Go to the Account tab in the Settings window and click the Choose folders button.

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In the proceeding window, uncheck the folders you don’t want to sync and click the Ok button to save changes. For instance, I don’t want to sync my Books and Ebooks folder. So, I unchecked those folders.

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That’s it. OneDrive now stops syncing unnecessary folders. You will not see these folders in the OneDrive folder.

You can also stop OneDrive sync by unlinking your user account in the OneDrive application. It takes a couple of clicks, and the procedure is simple.

  1. Right-click on the OneDrive icon on the taskbar.
  2. Choose the “Settings” option.
  3. Go to the “Account” tab.
  4. Click the “Unlink this PC” link.
  5. Click the “Unlink Account” button in the confirmation window.
  6. With that, you stopped the OneDrive sync.

Right-click on the OneDrive icon on the taskbar and select the Settings option. If there is no OneDrive icon, launch the application by searching for it in the start menu.

Stop onedrive sync 04

In the Settings window, go to the Account tab and click the Unlink this PC link under the OneDrive section.

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You will immediately see a confirmation window. Click on the Unlink Account button to continue.

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That is it. You’ve successfully unlinked the account and stopped the OneDrive sync. You’ve also stopped OneDrive sync.

Uninstall to stop OneDrive sync

Finally, if you want nothing to do with OneDrive, you can fully uninstall OneDrive. Unlike other options, there are multiple ways to uninstall OneDrive. You can also reinstall OneDrive as and when needed with just a few clicks. I’ve already written a step-by-step guide on both these topics. Follow them, and you should be good.

That is all. It is that simple to stop OneDrive sync in Windows.

I hope this simple Windows how-to guide helped you.

If you are stuck or need some help, comment below, and I will try to help as much as possible.

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