Is there a way to empty SkyDrive/OneDrive without deleting the files in the cloud.

I'm running Windows 8.1 and would like to revert all of the files to "online-only" mode except that the function doesn't work. I'd like to completely restart the sync process but not lose any files.

  • Change the location of your OneDrive folder, empty the old folder, then move the location back?
    – Indrek
    Apr 14, 2014 at 6:34

3 Answers 3


I would advise running the OneDrive Troubleshooter first. You can download that from here.

If you are still having issues or would still like to perform a reset then you can issue a set of commands in an elevated command prompt. SkyDrive.exe exists in the system32 folder (Don't worry about the name; It's still SkyDrive even if you're using OneDrive included in the 8.1 Update 1)

  1. SkyDrive /shutdown
  2. SkyDrive /reset
  3. SkyDrive

enter image description here

Please bear in mind that none of these steps will affect your files but should resolve the sync functionality you're having issues with.


  • 4
    The troubleshooter kept running forever. Running the command line fixed it quick and easy! Sep 9, 2014 at 10:03
  • Doesn't seem to need an elevated command prompt anymore (this is with OneDrive, as it is now called). Jan 18, 2022 at 13:41

Robula has a great answer that will likely fix most issues.

I also tried disconnecting my outlook.com account in charms > settings > change PC Settings > Accounts and pressing the Disconnect link. Then reconnecting it again.

However, none of those things resolve my issue. Locally on the computer it looked as though OneDrive was synced but it was not syncing to OneDrive in the cloud.

I did the following to resolve my issue:

  1. In windows explorer, right click OneDrive and select properties
  2. Select the Location tab
  3. Press the Move button and select a new location

In the new location, I select a new folder on the same drive. I'm not sure why this worked?

  1. Go to right lower right and find the white cloud icon.

    Step 1 Picture (click on it)

  2. Right-click on it, then choose Settings.

  3. Click Unlink OneDrive.

    Step 2 Picture (click on it)

It will appear to sign in, that's all, then sign in with your account.

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