How to Sync External Hard Drive to OneDrive: 3 Easy Ways Here

Learn how to sync external hard drive to OneDrive in this article, here are 3 ways, you could use the following steps to let OneDrive sync your external hard drive. The article also provides the easiest free method for backing up data to OneDrivede.


by Jonna Lasted Updated April 9, 2024

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How do I sync my external hard drive to OneDrive?


How do I sync OneDrive with an external hard drive so that when I add files to the external hard drive those files are automatically/periodically sent to the cloud?

- Question from

Microsoft OneDrive is applicable to all types of computers. You only need a OneDrive account to sync files on your device with the cloud. Many users use external hard drives to store more tools. Are you looking for a way to sync external hard drive to OneDrive?

Connect the external drive hard drive to the computer and sync with OneDrive, which means you can view and use the files in the external drive hard drive on any device that can use OneDrive, and you can make changes to the files on the hard drive through the network. Besides, the following key points may be the main reasons why you need to sync files from external hard drive to OneDrive:

  • Save storage space in the external drive.

  • Access files on external hard drives that have been synced to the cloud from multiple devices.

  • Provide a copy of the file on the external drive in the cloud to provide multiple protections for the file.

If you are looking for a way to sync external drives with OneDrive, please continue reading this article for all the solutions.

3 Ways to sync external hard drive to OneDrive

OneDrive's official platform provides two ways to sync files to the cloud, which you can do through the client and web. Also, you can use some third-party sync tools to more easily sync the external drive to OneDrive. Next, we will take you through the specific steps of all solutions.

Before starting the following methods, please connect your external hard drive to the computer via a data cable and make sure that the files in it can be accessed.

Way 1. Sync external hard drive to OneDrive manually

The OneDrive website allows you to manually upload files on your computer to the cloud. If you have connected an external drive to your computer, you can sync the external drive to OneDrive files through the website.

Step 1. Go to the OneDrive sign-in webpage from any browser and log in to your account.

Step 2. Click the Upload option on the main page of OneDrive and navigate to the external hard drive folder. You can select the entire file or the files in it, and click Open to confirm the sync files from the external drive to OneDrive.

OneDrive Upload

Way 2. OneDrive sync external drive with official app

OneDrive provides an official desktop application to help you sync local files to the cloud. The program has been built into Windows 10 and Windows 8.1 systems. You can use it to sync external hard drives with OneDrive immediately.

Step 1. If you are a Windows 10/8.1 user, open the OneDrive program directly from your computer (search for OneDrive in Start). If OneDrive is not installed on your computer, go to download it, and then log in with your Microsoft OneDrive account.

Set Up

Step 2. Now to set up your OneDrive, you can click Change location to select the folder storage location, or click Next to accept the default location of OneDrive files.

Folder Location

Step 3. Then choose to select the external hard drive folder to be synchronized with the cloud from local.

Step 4. After the setting is completed, a OneDrive folder will be automatically created on your computer. You only need to drag files or folders from the external drive hard disk connected to your computer to it, and you can let OneDrive sync the external drive to the cloud.

OneDrive Folder Windows

Way 3. Sync external drive to OneDrive with CBackup

There are also some free third-party tools that provide an easier way to sync external hard drive to OneDrive. For example, with CBackup,  a powerful free cloud backup service that can help you directly and automatically sync the files in the external hard disk to OneDrive, instead of manually uploading each time the file is updated.

Step 1. Download the CBackup desktop app, create a CBackup account for free and sign in to it.

Download CBackup Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

Step 2. Go to the Storage tab, then tap Authorize Now, and select OneDrive, click Add to confirm. Then sign in to your OneDrive account and authorize CBackup to access and manage your OneDrive files.

Add OneDrive

CBackup is based on OAuth and uses 256-bit AES encryption technology to ensure data security during data transmission.

Step 3. After adding, go to the Sync tab and click the Sync PC to Public Cloud button.

Sync PC to Public Cloud

Step 4. Then choose the folders from the external hard drive to be synchronized, and select a OneDrive folder as the sync destination on the right side of the interface.

Start Sync Files To Onedrive

Step 5. Click Settings on the bottom left, select the interval in the Scheduler tab, daily, weekly, or monthly, then hit OK to confirm the schedule OneDrive sync. Then click Start Sync to sync external drive to OneDrive automatically.

Schedule Sync

You’d better backup the external drive to OneDrive for safekeeping

If you want to provide an extra layer of protection for on-premises files, the cloud sync approach still has risks. Because when you sync your external drive to OneDrive again, this time it will overwrite the data from the previous sync. Also, if you're using OneDrive's free tier, you'll have a lot of unsynced data.

We strongly recommend that users use a professional cloud backup service to back up your external hard drive to the cloud. CBackup is a good choice. The powerful cloud backup feature ensures that each task does not overwrite the last saved data, and you can restore any version of the backup file.

Not only does CBackup offer local-to-cloud syncing, it also makes it easy to back up local files to multiple destinations, including cloud storage services such as OneDrive, and CBackup Cloud with large backup space. Its powerful technical support and backup function can provide professional protection and experience for your data backup.

Cbackup Main Page

Let's try to backup external hard drive to OneDrive with CBackup.

Step 1. Go to the Backup tab and click the Backup PC to Public Cloud button.

Create New Task In Cbackup App

You can select Backup Public Cloud to Public Cloud to create a cloud to cloud backup task to protect your OneDrive files to another cloud drive, and CBackup also supports Google Drive, Dropbox, and other major cloud storage services.

Step 2. Then you can choose files under the Source section, then choose OneDrive as the Destination. After confirming, click on Start Backup to back up external hard drive to OneDrive.

Start Backup Computer To Onedrive

Tip: CBackup Cloud provides 10GB of free storage and a more cost-effective large space subscription, you could also select CBackup Cloud as the backup destination to protect more data.

Final words

The above 3 methods can help you easily sync external hard drive to OneDrive to ensure that the files are stored in multiple places. If your primary purpose is to ensure the safety of the files on the drive, you can use CBackup to back up any local files to the cloud.

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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