Top 10 Ways to Stop OneDrive from Syncing

This article will show you 10 free ways to stop OneDrive from syncing files on Windows 10, 11, 8, 7 and introduce a free OneDrive alternative to you to backup and protect your files.

By @Kelsey
Last Updated October 19, 2021

Quick Guide

Can I stop OneDrive from syncing files on Windows 10?

β€œPreviously, OneDrive worked perfectly on my Windows 10 computer. But now, there is something wrong with its sync feature. It has kept syncing for a week and I can't stop it. The OneDrive Support Team said it was stuck and told me how to restart it. But this method doesn’t work. Do you know how to stop OneDrive from syncing on Windows 10? Please give me some suggestions. Thanks.”

Why need to stop OneDrive sync files?

If you are using OneDrive to backup and sync your files including photos, pictures, images, docs, sheets, excels, videos, etc. on Windows 10 computer or other devices, chances are that you need to disable OneDrive sync sometimes. For example, OneDrive keeps syncing your files but with little progress or the sync process seems never to finish.

In some cases, you may put the wrong items at syncing. Or, OneDrive has been automatically syncing files that you don’t want it to. If you are facing the same or similar situation, you may wonder if you can stop OneDrive from syncing on Windows 11, 10, 8, 7. The answer is yes. The following contents will show you how to stop syncing OneDrive.

How to stop OneDrive sync on Windows 10

There are 10 ways to help you stop OneDrive from syncing. No matter what devices you are using and which system you running, you can try the following ways to solve your OneDrive sync problem. If you have no time or patience to handle this kind of issue or avoid the issues in the feature, you can turn to the last part to use a OneDrive alternative - CBackup directly.

✎Note: The following will take the personal OneDrive free App in Windows 10 for example.

Let's learn how to disable OneDrive sync with detailed steps.

Way 1. Pause OneDrive app

If you just want to stop OneDrive synchronization temporarily, you can use the β€œPause syncing” function of the OneDrive app. It allows you to choose to pause for 2 hours, 8 hours, or 24 hours. Just click the OneDrive icon in the system tray. If the OneDrive icon is not visible, click the β€œShow hidden icons” button in the notification tray. Then, click β€œMore (three dots)” in the pop-up windows and click β€œPause Syncing”

✎Note: No matter how long you choose to pause OneDrive, you can resume its syncing at any time you want. It will start working immediately after resuming.

Way 2. Quit OneDrive app

Simply closing OneDrive app is also a way to stop it from syncing. To quit the OneDrive app, you can just click OneDrive icon in the system tray and select β€œQuit OneDrive” in above more pop-up menu. Then, OneDrive will be closed and all running tasks will be stopped.

Way 3. Unlink computer from OneDrive account

You can also turn off OneDrive sync by disconnecting computer from OneDrive account. Click β€œSettings” in pop-up menu as shown above. In the β€œAccount” tab of the pop-up window, click β€œUnlink this PC” and then unlink the account from the PC.

Way 4. Disable network connection

Cutting off network connection is an indirect way to stop syncing. You can cut off network supply for your computer or disable cellular data and Wi-Fi connection for your mobile phone. Turn the phone into β€œAirplane Mode” will also cut off its network connection. Or, just set application upload and download speed to zero.

Way 5. Change automatically sync settings

OneDrive may automatically sync your files because of some settings. Therefore, you can disable some automatic sync settings in your OneDrive. Usually, you should uncheck β€œAutomatically save photos and videos to OneDrive whenever I connect a camera, phone, or other devices to my PC” and β€œAutomatically save screenshots I capture to OneDrive” in "Auto Save" tab to discontinue auto-sync.

✎Note: If you have chosen to protect a folder, you can click β€œUpdate folders” > β€œStop protecting” to cancel automatic protection.

Way 6. Remove source files in OneDrive Folder

How to stop OneDrive from syncing everything? Choosing no source folder makes OneDrive have no file to operate and this will actually stop the sync task. As we all known, all files in the local OneDrive folder will be synced to the online cloud. Thus, if you don’t want certain or any of the files been synced to OneDrive, you can click OneDrive icon on the system tray and click β€œOpen folder” to OneDrive local folder and clear the files in it.

Way 7. Uninstall OneDrive

If the methods above can’t solve your problem and make OneDrive stop syncing, you can search for and open β€œControl Panel” from the β€œStart” menu and go to β€œUninstall a program” to uninstall OneDrive. Uninstall OneDrive won’t delete your files anywhere. Neither in the cloud nor on your computer, so don't worry.

Way 8. Hide OneDrive

In some versions of Windows operating systems, OneDrive is built-in and can’t be uninstalled. If you cannot uninstall OneDrive successfully, you can hide it to stop OneDrive from syncing. Just go to the Windows file explorer, right-click on OneDrive and select β€œProperties”. Then, in the pop-up OneDrive β€œProperties” window, under the β€œGeneral” tab, check β€œHidden”. Click β€œOK” to save and exit. Finally, quit OneDrive from its system tray icon to stop OneDrive from syncing.

Way 9. Stop OneDrive from automatic startup

If you stop OneDrive from automatic startup, it cannot start work and sync your files automatically. You can just uncheck β€œStart OneDrive automatically when I sign in to Windows” in β€œSettings” tab.

Way 10. Use the OneDrive Troubleshooter

Run the OneDrive troubleshooter and see if it helps you.

Bonus tip: Use a OneDrive alternative to protect your files

In fact, many users claimed that they are having trouble when syncing files with OneDrive. Sometimes, OneDrive keeps syncing files that you don’t want to sync. And sometimes, OneDrive is not syncing for unknown reasons. Therefore, no matter you can’t solve these issues or you want to get rid of these issues in the feature, you can use a third-party cloud service like CBackup to replace OneDrive.

CBackup is a professional Windows cloud backup service that allows you to backup Windows PC files to its CBackup Cloud and multiple cloud drives (OneDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox, etc,), and restores the backups at any time. It offers huge backup space and offers paid plans at a reasonable price. Let’s follow the steps below to execute OneDrive with CBackup.

1. Download and install the CBackup PC client on your Windows PC.

2. Run the software. Then, sign up for a CBackup account and sign in.

3. Click on the My Storage tab and tap the Add Cloud icon, select OneDrive to add, and then follow the on-screen guide to connect your OneDrive account to CBackup.

4. Click on the Backup Task tab and click on the New Task button.

5. Click on Add Source and find the files or folders on your computer that you want to back up, click on Add Destination to choose Single Cloud > OneDrive as the backup destination.

6. After selecting, click Start Backup.


That’s all about how to stop OneDrive from syncing, you can try to solve your problems. However, chances are that you will fail to handle this issue and meet other sync or uploading issues with OneDrive in the feature. Therefore, you are recommended to use CBackup as the best alternative to OneDrive. What's more, CBackup also offers free many other powerful features and has a clear interface and user-friendly design. Why not give it a try.