OneDrive – Getting the latest Insider updates – Files On-Demand

Note: that this is an insider installer therefore if you hit any problems you might have to rebuild you PC!

In this post I’m going through:

  • How not to get the Insider build for OneDrive
  • How to get the latest awesome OneDrive stuff
  • My conclusions of the new On-Demand features

Getting the right build (the wrong way)

Today I had a play with the new features that will arrive in OneDrive soon, starting by installing the insiders version of OneDrive. All started by downloading the new client and then when I tried to install I got a message saying that a later version of the client was already installed. So I uninstalled OneDrive first before going through the installer.

After the sign in … There is a dialog where you might want to select the location of your OneDrive files. You could consider not putting the files on you system drive here.

In my case I now got a warning as I already had OneDrive installed before.

In the following dialog  you can select the folders which you want to synchronize.  This is where I would be careful and deselect the box “Sync all files and folders in OneDrive


Then I looked for the options but my settings in OneDrive still don’t show the options that I’m looking for.

Getting the right build (the right way)

Then now the right way of testing insider updates.

Last week I used a PC with the insider buiuld already installed. This time aroudn I wa less lucky. If you want to install the insider builds you will have to install build 16215 (or later) of your windows 10.  You can only do this when you are receiving insiders builds. Ok, this is getting a bit risky so please don’t do this with your production PCs. Or at least be happy if you have to rebuild your PC if things go wrong.

So I was already on the Insider program but I switched it to Fast.



Quite soon after seelcting Fast my updates appeared:



So time to wait for the update to be installed, which should include the latest OneDrive options.

Well this took quite a while. There seems to be an issue with the install of the windows update. Within windows update I noticed that the progress percentage was stuck on 99% for a couple of hours. Then when I looked at my update history I noticed that a reboot was pending. No sign of this in my start menu though? I decided to take a bit of a risk and rebooted my PC anyway.

So after a reboot things started to look better:

I quickly checked the version of my windows:


So we’re still not there. I I went for another cycle of updates and restart … and after a while I got build 16232.1000



Now that the latest updates have been installed it is time to look for the On-Demand options in One-Drive.

Getting started with On-Demand

First things first, to start with the On-Demand features within OneDrive you will have to enable it. The On-Demandoptionsare availableboth in OneDrive and OneDrive for Business. After cliking on the Turn on button. OneDrivewill now restart and the Turn on button has been replaced with Show all files.

After clicking on the Show all files, all the files will be available without all the files having been downloaded. Initially OneDrive will go into Sync mode.

When looking at my files within OneDrive there is also a status of the files. there are 3 available statusses:

Files are either available offline, available in the cloud only, or currently syncing.

In my case I would like to free up as much as possible space. So I right click on the folders in OneDrive as the guidelines mention. but my free up space is not available as an option.

After a few minutes waiting the options seem to change. So it is quite important to remain patient.

So, my aim is to free up as much space as possible while I have access to all files within OneDrive or OneDrive for Business. So at my top level OneDrive folder I’m selecting the free up space option.

All my files within Onedrive now go either in Sync or cloud only mode.


So what happens when you click on a cloud only file?

As soon as I click on a field that is marked as cloud only I get a download dialog and my file is available locally…

… well at least sometimes.

Every now and then I got :

An unexpected error is keepting you form copying the file. If you continue to receive this error you can use the error code to search for help with this problem.

Error 0x80070079: The semaphore timeout period has expired.


I found that the try again doesn’t really solve this problem. Skip seems to be the better options and then try again by right-cliking on the file.



But the nice thing about the OneDrive on Demand feature is that little thumbnails of photos are available while the  files are not fully downloaded on my system.

Can I still exclude folders?

Yes, you can! The choose folder option is still available within the OneDrive Settings.

When folders are deselected they will not be available for the on-demand functionality of OneDrive on your device, but these files/folders are still kept within the cloud.

I did notice however that while OneDrive was still trying to sync all the folders I wasn’t able to deselect any of the folders.

The Sorry, your changes couldn’t be saved dialog would appear during this stage.






Ok, so what is the difference?

To test the difference between in the cloud and local files I created a folder within my OneDrive that I synced to my PC.

I checked the space used by this folder:

I then made the files only available for download by freeing up space for this folder. Then I checked again how much disk pace was consumed by this folder:

Looking at the size on disk this really is a major improvement, the cloud only files don’t take any space. I’m sure that there will be some storage used to keep the names of the folders and files, but at least the content of the documents isn’t keeping hold of my diskspace.


Taking into consideration that this is still prerelease. The On-Demand features in OneDrive and OneDrive for Business are a nice new feature that allows me to leave some documents available in the cloud only and therefore saving my disk space. Many times in the past I have struggled to reduce the amount taken by my many documents that I don’t really need to have available at any time. Now with on-demand  I can free up space as I need.












2 thoughts on “OneDrive – Getting the latest Insider updates – Files On-Demand

  1. Experienced file sync issues between device and online. MS Office upload centre reports cache error. Repair tool fails to resolve issue. Time for a break before attempting to resolve this nasty.

    1. In general, waiting resolves a lot of the sync issues. It looks like OneDrive struggles to keep up while it hasn’t finished synchronizing files. Once all is in sync things work a lot better.

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