Microsoft OneDrive (macOS)

Microsoft OneDrive will sync all files in the OneDrive - SUNY Geneseo folder on a macOS computer.

The Windows 10 feature that automatically syncs your Desktop and Documents folders is also available to enable on macOS. Unlike the Windows features, syncing the Pictures folder is not supported in the macOS version of OneDrive.

Before You Start

  • These instructions are specific to the macOS operating system

  • Microsoft OneDrive is available to all current students, faculty, and staff

  • OneDrive is pre-installed on faculty and staff computers, and is available to students via the App Store

  • You can access your files on iOS or Android using the OneDrive mobile app or via the web

  • Watch this helpful video from CIT Tech Days.

Signing in to OneDrive

If your computer is not signed into OneDrive already, you will need to sign in first.

  1. Double-click on the OneDrive application in your Applications folder:

  2. Enter your full Geneseo email address, then click Sign in

  3. Enter your Geneseo password on the next screen, click Sign in, then pass an MFA prompt to complete the sign-in process

  4. Accept the default file location settings by selecting the Next button

  5. On the "Finish Setting Up" screen, click Next, then click OK on the macOS prompt to allow OneDrive to begin syncing

  6. Proceed with “quick tutorial” of OneDrive tips by continuing to select the Next buttons in the following screens

  7. Choose Later when given the option to download the mobile version onto a smart phone or mobile device

  8. Open the OneDrive folder when asked to do so at the end of this tutorial

Keeping Files on your Computer

By default, OneDrive will upload your files to the cloud and download them to your computer when you need them. This feature is referred to as Files On Demand, and is enabled by default for macOS. If you would prefer to also keep copies of your documents on your local machine at all times, follow these steps to make sure your files are always available on your computer:

  1. Open a Finder window, then click "OneDrive" under locations in the left-hand navigation bar

  2. For any folders or files that you want to permanently have on hand, right-click and select ”Always keep on this device”

  3. You may also enable automatic syncing from your Desktop and Documents folders on macOS. To do so, click the OneDrive cloud icon in the top right-hand corner of your desktop (near your wireless icon), click the gear icon, click Preferences, click Backup, and then click Manage Backup. You can then enable sync from Desktop and Documents, and perform the same process above for any files or folders that you want to be always available on your machine:

  4. If you log into any other computers that are NOT your main/primary computer, you do NOT need to select the option to always keep on this device. This option for using OneDrive on secondary computers will still allow you to access those files as long as you have an internet connection, but will not take or fill up the hard drive space on a secondary computer. 

  5. From now on, when signing into your computer, OneDrive should automatically sign you in and the OneDrive icon should show that it is backing up. Occasionally you may be prompted to log into OneDrive again. Make sure you do this to keep your files syncing correctly.

  6. Each of the files or folders that are saved in OneDrive can have one of two icons:

    1. A cloud download icon indicates a file or folder that is available in OneDrive, but not currently downloaded to your computer

    2. A checkmark icon indicates a file or folder that has been selected to "Always keep on this device"

    3. Any file or folder without an icon indicates that it has been downloaded to your computer, but has not been selected to "Always keep on this device"

Accessing your OneDrive data from anywhere

One convenient benefit of using Microsoft OneDrive is that you can view any of your backed up documents from any computer via the web at Log in with your Geneseo account and continue where you left off! You can even save the files back to Microsoft OneDrive to be updated when you get back to your main computer. You also can access all your files at

You can find your content on any phone or tablet using the Microsoft OneDrive app:

  1. OneDrive on Apple's App Store

  2. OneDrive on the Google Play store

How to tell if your files are syncing

By default, you will automatically be logged into OneDrive as long as you have signed into it previously on any college-provided computer. Click on the OneDrive cloud icon in the top right-hand corner of your desktop (near your wireless icon) and OneDrive will report its sign-in and sync status to you.

Need more storage space? 

By default all students, faculty, and staff are allocated 2.5 TB of space in OneDrive. If you require additional storage up to 5TB, please submit a request in our service portal. See this article for more information on storage limits in OneDrive.

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