OneDrive will be able to exclude specific files from sync starting in December

Rabia Noureen

OneDrive for Business

Microsoft has revealed that it’s adding a new Office 365 policy that will let admins automatically exclude select file types from the backups in OneDrive. The feature, which is expected to land next month, is currently available for Office Insiders in OneDrive (version 20.201), according to the Microsoft 365 roadmap,

“This setting lets you enter keywords to prevent the OneDrive sync app (OneDrive.exe) from uploading certain files to OneDrive or SharePoint. You can enter complete names, such as “setup.exe” or use the asterisk (*) as a wildcard character to represent a series of characters, such as *.pst. Keywords aren’t case sensitive,” the company explained.

When the setting is enabled, it should prevent users from uploading new files that match the keywords specified in the exclusion list. In File Explorer, these skipped files will appear with a “do not enter” icon in the Status column, as shown below. Moreover, the change will be visible to users in the OneDrive activity center, explaining why the files aren’t syncing.

File explorer

It is worth noting that excluding specific files from OneDrive sync has been a top user request for UserVoice for years. Enabling this setting will give Office 365 Admins more flexibility than the “Block syncing of specific file types” option already available in the Microsoft 365 admin center. Do you think this new policy is a welcome change for OneDrive and SharePoint? Let us know in the comments down below.