How to Set Up Google Drive One-Way Sync in Windows PC

One-way sync is possible with Google Drive. You will learn how to achieve Google Drive one-way sync in this article with 3 different tools. Please read on and learn the detailed steps.


by Jonna Lasted Updated April 11, 2024

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One-way sync vs two-way sync

As you may know, file synchronization is the process of making sure that two or more locations contain the same, current files. Actually, file synchronization also has different types. The most common types are one-way sync and two-way sync.

To put it simply, one-way sync means that files are copied only from source to a target in one direction, but no files are ever copied back to the primary location. In a two-way type of sync, files get copied in both directions. Both locations get synchronized with each other. This way, in the event of a failure, you can still access your documents via another machine.

One Way Sync

Can I set up Google Drive one-way sync?

As one of the most popular cloud storage around the world, most users should all be familiar with Google Drive. To help users back up files to its cloud, Google Drive offers many uploading tools such as web app, desktop app, mobile app and so on.

Generally, the web app only allows users to select and upload files manually. If you want to sync files to OneDrive automatically, you should set up Google Drive desktop app – Google Backup and Sync (replaced by Drive for desktop)on your computer to sync your local files or folders.

As the name suggests, Google Drive for desktop is an automatic file sync and backup tool for Google Drive. The sync mode of it is two-way sync. After setting, Drive for desktop will sync the folders that you selected to Google Drive cloud automatically, and the files in Google Drive folder also will be synced to local.

If you want Google Drive sync files just in one-way mode, you can learn how to set up Google Drive one-way sync from local to cloud with different sync tools in the following contents. Please read on to learn the detailed information.

Part 1. Set up Google Drive one-way sync from local to cloud

As mentioned above, you can rely on an automatic file sync tool to set up Google Drive sync in one-way mode. Here, we will take the official sync tool of Google Drive - Drive for desktop (the original Backup and Sync) and a free third-party tool – CBackup as an example to show you how to set up Google Drive one-way sync from local to the cloud.

Way 1. Set up one-way sync via Google Drive desktop app

Google Drive for desktop is replacing Backup and Sync, the program has been upgraded in functionality and you can still easily one-way sync your local data with Google Drive in one way.

1. Download and install Google Drive for desktop from Microsoft's official website to your computer and install it.

2. Sign in to your Google Account. Then, you will be given a general introduction to this application.

Sign In With Browser

3. On the My computer screen, click the Add folder button and the app will prompt you to choose which folders you want to sync to Google Drive. And select the folders or files in the pop-up window.  

Add Folder

4. Make your selection and hit Save and let Google Drive sync one-way only (local to cloud).

Click Save

5. On the Google Drive screen, if you check the Stream files, you would enable the cloud to local files one-way sync.

Google Drive Stream Files

Way 2. Set up Google Drive one-way sync via CBackup

CBackup is a professional cloud backup and sync freeware for Windows PC and laptops. With its Sync feature, you can set up one-way sync to Google Drive automatically and easily. Besides Google Drive, it also supports many other mainstream cloud drives including OneDrive, Dropbox, etc.

1. Download and install CBackup desktop app on your computer. Create a CBackup account and log in.

Download CBackupWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

2. Head to Storage, select Google Drive, tap the Authorize Now button and follow the guide to allow CBackup to access your cloud storage.

Add Cloud

3. Click “Sync” and “Sync PC to Public Cloud” subsequently.

Basic Sync

4. Edit the task name if necessary. Select the folders you’d like to sync to Google Drive.

Sync Add Folder

5. Click the right-pointed arrow to open get all folders in Google Drive, and choose the one you want to save synced files. Then, click “Start Sync” to perform Google Drive one-way sync.

Sync to Google Drive

Part 2. Set up Google Drive one-way sync between clouds

How to make Google Drive only syncing one way from cloud to cloud? You can also set up one-way sync to sync files from other cloud storage to Google Drive. Since Google doesn't offer such a tool to help your sync files between Google Drive accounts or different cloud storage directly, you can rely on a third-party tool like CBackup to achieve that easily. Let’s see how to do it with the reliable cloud to cloud sync tool - CBackup.

1. According to the above steps add other Google Drive accounts to CBackup.

Note: If you need to perform cloud to cloud sync tasks between Google Drive and other types of cloud drives, you can add multiple cloud storage service accounts in the same way, such as Google Drive, OneDrive, Dropbox, etc. 

2. After adding, click "Sync" and then click the "Sync Public Cloud to Public Cloud" button.

Sync Public Cloud to Public Cloud

3. Hit New Task in the web app, name your backup task, and click the "Add Source" button to add one Google Drive account as the sync source. You can choose individual folders on Google Drive as the backup source.

Add Source And Destination

5. Click "Add Destination" to add another Google Drive account and then click "Start Sync" to execute your sync task. 

Sync Google Drive to Another Account

Bonus tips: what if Google Drive storage space is insufficient?

If users sync their files to Google Drive for safekeeping with the free Google Drive account, the 15 GB of free storage space would run out quickly. If you are not interested in the benefits provided by Google one but need more storage for Drive, you can merge Google Drive accounts to get more free Google Drive cloud space with CBackup. 

Let's see how to combine Google Drive accounts easily to get more even unlimited Google Drive storage for free with CBackup:

1. Run the CBackup desktop app and sign in. Ensure you have added enough Google Drive accounts and other cloud drives.

2. Click on the "Storage" tab and click on the "+ Add Combined Cloud" button.

Add Combined Cloud

3. Check all the boxes before clouds, and hit Next, then choose backup order for these clouds, and press Combine.

Tick All Cloud Accounts

Then, you could backup files to Google Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, CBackup Cloud (10Gb free, and you could upgrade to 5TB), and the combined cloud using the PC cloud backup service of CBackup. And it allows you to restore the backups from Cloud at any time. 

Final words

You can follow the steps to set up Google Drive one-way sync with different tools. No matter you need to sync files from local to Google Drive in one-way sync mode or from another cloud to Google Drive in one-way sync mode, you can find useful tools in the contents above. 

Jonna · Editor
Jonna becomes a professional in the areas of cloud backup and restoration, data protection, etc. after years of learning and researching. She maintains a keen eye for the latest technology trends, ensuring that the information provided is always in step with industry developments.

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