How to Enable Offline Files in Windows 10 and Sync it?

Posted by @Ivy

October 12, 2018

In this article, I will not only tell you how to enable offline files in Windows 10 and sync it, but also help you fix conflict files and offer you an easier way to sync files in Windows 10.

What does offline files mean?

Offline Files is a useful sync feature in Windows 7/8/10, which works with Sync Center. With the help of Sync Center, all the information ( called offlines files ) can be synced between computer and network servers and the network files and folders are kept available offline on your computer. The offline files is just a copy of your network files and folders saved on the computer. 

Thus, you can access offline files even when you are not connected to the network if you enable offline files in Windows 10.

Why you should enable offline files in Windows 10?

1. Access network files or folders at any time.

If you want to access network files or folders at any time, especially when your computer is not connected to the network, you need to use Offline Files features. 

2. Sync offline files between computer and network drive.

If you want to sync files with offline files folder or Sync Center, the first thing is to enable offline files and activate Offline Files folder. Offline Files Folder is used to keep offline files in sync between your computer and network drive. 

How to enable offline files in Windows 10?

Usually, you will create a shared folder to save the network files and folders. If you want to make it always offline, you must map the network drive to local computer. And then you are allowed to turn on offline files in Windows 10.

Step 1. Sync network drive to local drive

1. Access the shared folder on the network drive. You can press Win + R to summon the Run window, then type two backslashes and IP address or hostname to connect your network drive. Once your connect to the server, you will see the shared folder.

2. Right-click the shared folders, then choose Map network drive from the context menu.

Map Network Drive Min

3. Now, you can go to the offline files folder or its subfolder, right-click it and select  Always available offline from the context menu.

Always Available Offline Min

4. Wait for the final result after you receive a message telling you that your files will be available offline. When this step finish, you can disconnect from the network and see your offline files from your mapped network drive.

Files Will Be Available Offline Min

Note: In the mapped network drive, You will see a list of folders, which have already been cached by Offline Files folder. But you can only access files available offline. If you try to open a folder which is not available offline, there will be nothing inside unless you connect to the network again.

Step 2. How to turn on offline files in Windows 10?

Configure offline files in Windows 10 by Sync Center

1. Click Start Menu, type Sync Center in the search box and then choose it from start menu list.

2. Click Manage offline files at the left panel and then you will see an Offline Files window.

3. Enable offline files and activate its folder. You can click Enable offline files under the Gerneral tab and restart your computer to activate Offline Files folder.  If you do not restart your computer, offline files folder will not be saved on your computer.

Enable Offlinefiles Min

Note: After you enable and activate offline files, you will see Disable offline files option when your access Offline Files again. If you want to disable offline files in Windows 10, you just need to move your finger and click Disable offline files. Please remember to restart your computer to make changes available.

Enable offline files in Windows 10 using GPO

1.Type group policy in the search box and then select group policy editor from the start menu list.

2. Expand Computer Configuration > Administrator templates > Network > Offline Files in order, find and double-click Allow or Disallow the use of Offline Files feature, tick Enabled and then click Apply and OK to exit this window.

Enable Offline Files Windows 10

3. close local group policy, and then go to Sync Center and see if Offline Files is enabled.

How to sync offline files in Windows 10?

About offline files sync for Windows 10, you have two options, including syncing offline files manually and automatically. Detailed steps are below.

Sync offline files manually

Step 1. Access the mapped network drive. You can go to File Explore > This PC > network locations, then select the mapped network drive created in advance. 

Step 2. Sync offline files.You can right-click folders which contain offline files, then select Sync > Sync selected offline files.

Sync with Offline Files Folder Min

Sync files automatically

Step 1. Enter into Sync Center. You can type Sync Center in the search box, then select it from start menu list.

Step 2. Access the mapped network drive.  You can click View sync partnerships link in the left pane, then double-click the mapped network drive. 

Sync with Sync Center Min

Step 3. Select the folder you want to sync on a regular basis, then pitch on Schedule button on the menu bar. At last, follow the prompt to finish the rest of steps.

Conflicts in syncing files - how to fix?

If some certain files does not sync, you may see conflicts files in Offline Files. It occurs when you edit file offline and somebody else edit the same file on your network. After that, these files will not be synced and marked as conflicts. Don't worry about it. It's very easy to fix.

Step 1. Go to Sync Center, click View sync conflicts on the left panel and then you will see a list of conflict files.

Step 2. Right-click the files and click View option. Now, you can choose to keep the version that you created while you were away, keep the version on the server that someone else edited while you were away or keep both versions and rename the one that you created.

Step 3. Sync files again.

An easier way to sync files

Offline files folder and Sync Center on your computer can help you sync files both manually and automatically. However, the files are only synced between computers and network drive. And Offline Files may not work as it should. For example, some of your files may not be synced owing conficts.

Want an easier way, I recommend you file sync software AOMEI Backupper. 

File sync software: AOMEI Backupper 

AOMEI Backupper is a very easy-to-use file sync software, even for a beginner. With it, you can sync files to network drive, internal hard drive, external storage device like USB flash drive, OneDrive, etc. 

Besides, you can enjoy more useful feature. You can get an email notification and ensure if your operation is completed successfully. You can sync files at a given time and date, including day by day, week by week, month by month. You can sync files at an event-trigger like user logon, user logoff, system startup, system shutdown. Also, you can real-time monitor your files. Once your files are changed, this software will sync it automatically. 

AOMEI Backupper Standrd can satisfy the needs of the majority of users. But if you want more advanced features, you can upgrade to its advanced edition AOMEI Backupper Professional.

How to automatically sync files in Windows 10?

Step 1. Download AOMEI Backupper, install and launch it.

Step 2. Click Backup and File Sync.

File Sync Min

Step 3. Click Add folder > Browse, then select Share/NAS to find the files or folders you want to sync to your computer. After that, you can choose a destination path for your files.

Select Folders from Network Storage Device Min

Step 4. Set up schedule setting for your files. 

Schedule Settings Min

Tip: If you want to see the changed or edited files immediately, you can upgrade to AOMEI Backupper Professional and select Real-time Sync settings. It can help you sync files in real-time.

Step 5. Back to the main page of File Sync window, then click Start Sync.

Conclusion

To sync offline files, the first thing is to enable offline files in Windows 10. Then, you can sync files via Offline Files folder or Sync Center. But you are only allowed to sync files between local computer and network drive. And Offline Files may not work properly all the time. 

Thus, an easier way is essential. I recommend you free AOMEI Backupper, which can help you sync files without effort. In AOMEI Backupper, you can sync files to all kinds of storage device, including local computer, network drive, cloud drive like Google Drive, Dropbox, NAS, etc. Also, you can enable email notification to ensure if the operation is completed successfully. You can sync files day by day, week by week, month by month.

Moreover, AOMEI Backupper Standard (from version 4.5 on) has included another useful function which, serving as an assistant, enables you to create and manage backup tasks on all workstations, PCs and virtual machines within LAN following the order from a single central management computer. Learn more about this function >>