Worth Switching from DropBox to OneDrive for Everything Yet?


Is it worth switching, if you are an O365 Home user, to using OneDrive for everything? I know one of the issues is I use OneDrive (Personal) and for Work so that complicates my setup on my work laptop. It always seems like the sync engine to upload photos on my family’s phones never works with OneDrive so I’m hesitant as I want fire and forget photo backups, etc.





Comments (24)

24 responses to “Worth Switching from DropBox to OneDrive for Everything Yet?”

  1. 2

    My experiences with OneDrive for the past many months, certainly all this year, have been very positive. I will need to keep my Dropbox account for work related reasons, and I still find OneDrive first-time sync to be slow. But beyond that, I think it's pretty much there. In other words, you can trust it to work.

    • 6852

      In reply to paul-thurrott:

      Paul, or anyone else with knowledge of this specific issue - have they fixed the problem(s) that would result in numerous sync errors with Office documents that were being edited frequently? Not just occasional photo backups or whatever?

      I gave up on OneDrive because documents would often show red x's in File Explorer and multiple versions of the file would be created. At one point I lost work and decided I had to move to something else. But I'm paying Google (which has other issues of its own, though at least works without losing data) when I already have Office 365 so would prefer to move back to OneDrive if these problems have been sorted out.

  2. wright_is

    I never really used DropBox. I set up an account way-back-when, but I think I only ever shared 1 file on it.

    I have used OneDrive as my only cloud storage (well, my Android phone does use some GDrive, but photos, documents etc. automatically sync over OneDrive. It has been 100% reliable on Android so far - and I've swapped out 4 phones so far and not lost any images.

  3. robinwilson16

    For me these days OneDrive works reliably with everything except Office documents as the Office Upload cache always seems to conflict with OneDrive where they both try to upload the file at the same time then it thinks two different people are working on the document and you end up with multiple versions of the same file and confusing (almost trick) questions you have to answer to try and ensure the correct file is salvaged or risk losing all your work.

    The issue started for me when placeholders were first removed (to make things more reliable) and working with Office documents has never been reliable since.

    Exactly the same issues always occur no matter which Microsoft account or which computer I am using and it's hard to believe it couldn't be resolved in all these years.

  4. Matthias Götzke

    I certainly would not. It is cheaper, but the number of issues with e.g the different native apps not showing folders (not even after a refresh, only after a complete reinstall when possible) on iOS / WindowsPhone / Android / XBox) and general sluggishness put quite a damper on my enthusiasm.

  5. Lauren Glenn

    I haven't had too many bad experiences with OneDrive myself since they got rid of the bad implementation of placeholders in Win8 and replaced it with what we have now. Although with that turned on, I remember pausing syncing and having it be unable to reconcile the difference when turning it back on. I moved a lot of files off and it just started downloading them all again (like it used to do with Win8 placeholders a lot). With Win8 placeholders, I constantly had files that would duplicate or would suddenly reappear after I tried to delete or update them.

    To be honest, Dropbox has been the only one that has never given me a sync problem. I keep two PCs in perfect sync with it. I only use OneDrive because Selective Sync is only available in Pro on Dropbox which make you buy 3 $15 licenses to get it and 2TB.... which I won't spend that much money to get an extra 1TB of online storage.

    • Lauren Glenn

      In reply to alissa914:

      And to add to this, I was in the middle of moving my iTunes library (750GB of videos and music) over to OneDrive just because I got a GPD Pocket and wanted to be able to stream an occasional video from OneDrive without having to pay extra for Selective Sync in Dropbox.

      Basically, what happened was about 450GB in, OneDrive turns red with an X saying "Unable to sync. Try again later." The help option takes you to a forum where the forum is locked and you can't ask a question in the forum. The other one tells you to view a log where you're taken to a folder with a bunch of binary files you can't read. So, I waited 6 hours to see if it would clear itself up. It didn't. I ended up having to uninstall and reinstall in the end as unlinking the account did not solve the problem.

      I had this happen a while ago when I got FIOS because the upload speeds were very high (they switched to match the upload speed with the download, so my 100Mb connection was giving 100Mb upstream).

      Back then, in the logs, it actually said that I was uploading too fast. Now, it gives me garbage and won't sync anymore. That's where the reinstall came in. Now, I'm just downloading all my videos off it to put on Dropbox.

      I found that Dropbox Professional (not Business) gives you 1TB of storage with selective sync and 120 days of file recovery for $20/mo. I didn't want to pay the extra $10/mo for it but if I turn off OneDrive, I get what I want and get a backup solution that actually is reliable with Dropbox. I just can't trust OneDrive with my files. Way too many issues.... and that lack of a Help option to take you somewhere that you can actually use is just sloppy.

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  7. Winner

    I would not trust them.

  8. jimchamplin

    Dropbox has versioning which allows for simple one-stop ransomware protection. Also, the Dropbox client isn't as CPU intensive as the OneDrive client which doubles my boot time on an SSD.

    And that's unacceptable! I won't settle for spinning rust boot times anymore. I'd rather kill startup processes than extend my boot time.

  9. offTheRecord

    What phone OS are you using? If it's Android or iOS, you can also set Google Photos to backup the photos on your phone. That'll offer a bit of redundancy. That's what I do. I have photos backed up automatically to both Google and OneDrive.

  10. 5314

    I've found that OneDrive seems to have up'd it's game this year as well, however the fact that it doesn't provide versioning for non office documents is a big problem when using it as a back up service because it prevents you rolling back if you get hit by ransomware etc.


    As an aside there is a work around for that awful (and I've literally lost hours of work to it) office upload manager rubbish. If you make the relevant OneDrive folder a network share and then always access the files through that it'll trick the upload manager into ignoring it and let the background engine just do it's job.

  11. 6750

    I wouldn't.

    Key issue for me is OneDrive does not provide versioning support for general (non-MS Office) file types.

  12. 1043

    I only use OneDrive for syncing files between devices and have both a personal and work account. At work, we move our Documents and Desktop folders to OneDrive and have very few problems. The only things to be careful of are files/folders with special characters in their name ([email protected]#$%, etc...) and database files that are constantly updated, including Outlook .pst files. We have experienced errors in Outlook with Archives being synced. For programs that use special characters in their file and folder names which cannot be changed without breaking the program, we simply move the location of their respective folders outside of Documents, we have not run into a program yet that did not offer this functionality.

    As for photo syncing, I use my personal OneDrive account to automatically sync all photos I take with my iPhone. It takes an average of 2 minutes for them to sync automatically, when I am in a hurry I just open the OneDrive app on the phone and look in the pending folder which will trigger a sync on the spot. Each photo takes about 4 seconds to upload over my home Internet.

  13. 3229

    I use OneDrive for everything, except for serious code projects that I keep in source control and for some downloads. I'm pretty happy with it, though I still have a Windows Server Essentials backup. If you don't have something like that, I recommend a period system image backup to protect against stuff like ransomware.

  14. Daekar

    OneDrive is what I use for everything, and 99% of the time the experience is good. I had an issue with the photos not uploading from my Android phone with the OneDrive android client, but I downloaded a program called "OneSync" which is a much more powerful OneDrive sync client than the one from MS. You can sync files to the actual normal filesystem of your phone, for instance, or specify upload only, download only, etc, for arbitrary directories in the cloud and on your handset. It's been over a year since I had the photo upload problem, it might've fixed itself by now.

    Beyond that one issue, which affected only me and not my wife, I've never experienced any OneDrive sync issues. Things just magically appear everywhere exactly as they should. With the new anti-ransomware file history function, I'm less inclined than ever to switch.

    So far, OneDrive for Business has worked great for me at work except when something goes wrong with the Office Upload Center. I have no idea why that application exists, honestly.

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