How to Recover OneDrive Files Missing After Sync?

Why are your OneDrive files missing after sync? Check out this article and learn how to recover OneDrive files quickly and safely.


By Lora / Updated on April 3, 2024

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“Does OneDrive sync delete files? Why are my files lost?”

OneDrive is a popular cloud sync and storage service that allows users to store, sync, and share their files anywhere they want.

Users around the world, especially Windows PC users, will be willing to use OneDrive as their file hosting and storage helper.

One of the good features is file synchronization, which facilitates users to access their wanted files whenever they like and wherever they need them.

But it seems that there are many users encountering issues like “files disappeared from OneDrive after sync”. They complained that their Onedrive data gets missing after they try to sync or once they connect to the internet.


OneDrive files disappeared during the syncing process


I have discovered that, during the syncing process over the last two months, some of my files have disappeared. Although the directories appear in OneDrive, the files are missing. Do you have any idea where they would be?


- Question from Microsoft Community


Some users are wondering “Why OneDrive deleted my photos” after syncing, unlinking, etc. This article can help you if you are one of them. /in the next part, you can check out the possible causes and see if your files are lost out of these reasons.

Why are OneDrive files missing after sync?

File loss is not a rare case when using OneDrive as well as other cloud storage services. Many reasons can be an active trigger to file loss from OneDrive.

Your files were deleted by others on another device. If you have logged into your account on other devices, your files might get removed by others. 
Malfunctioned sync. Data sync will be influenced by the status of the network. If it went wrong, the files might get disappeared during the sync process. 
Removed by the file/folder owner. This might be the case especially if the files you lost are shared files. Once they were removed by the owner, you will lose access to them as well.

Now check the next part and find your ways to recover files disappeared from OneDrive.

How to recover OneDrive files missing after sync?

According to the causes, we can find multiple methods to fix this issue and recover Onedrive files lost after sync.

Method 1. Change your password and look into the Recycle Bin

If you have your account signed in on different devices, it is suggested to sign out and never keep your password remembered.

Otherwise, your files might be removed maliciously or mistakenly by others on that device.

So, you would better change your password and check if the files are in the Recycle Bin. If they are not in the bin, maybe the files were permanently removed already.

You need to recover files deleted from OneDrive recycle bin.

There are 2 ways to achieve so. Firstly, you could get the files from the OneDrive website Recycle Bin:

Step 1. Go to > sign in > click Menu > Recycle bin.


Step 2. Select the files you need > Restore.


Also, you can turn to the desktop Recycle Bin:

Double-click to open Recycle Bin on your desktop > choose the files deleted > click Restore.


Thus you can recover deleted files from the OneDrive recycle bin quite easily.

Method 2. Pause and resume sync

Many users will sync local folders to OneDrive since it allows them to view, check share, etc., their files on several devices. As mentioned above, network status will influence the syncing process. And sometimes the OneDrive inner errors may lead to sync problems as well.

You might try these fixes.

Disconnect the internet and re-connect to it.

Right-click the OneDrive icon > click Pause syncing > Resume syncing.

Update the OneDrive client. An outdated client can meet errors. It is good to keep your app updated regularly.

Shorten the filenames. Filenames that are too long may cause sync problems.


Now, your Onedrive sync may work as usual.

Method 3. Contact the file owner

OneDrive is a good collaboration tool for its file sync and share features. So, if you are sharing files or folders with others, you may also meet file loss all of a sudden.

If so, try to contact your file owner and see if the owner accidentally removed you from the shared list or removed the files.

Once the owner permanently deletes the files, all the participants will lose access to the data.

You could go to Shared > Shared with you > see if your shared files are lost or not.


Thus you can recover OneDrive files that were removed by their owner.

Method 5. Recover OneDrive files efficiently

File deletion is one of the biggest reasons for file loss from OneDrive. It provides 30 days for users to undo their deletion from the recycle bin. But after that, the files will be wiped from the OneDrive storage space permanently.

In this instance, users might use an effective Windows data recovery program to perform OneDrive file recovery quickly and easily.

MyRecover is a good option you can rely on. It offers well-developed scanning technologies and useful tools for simply searching for lost and deleted data.

Comprehensive. It recovers data that has been lost due to deletion, formatting, recycle bin emptying, viruses, and other factors. 
Easy-to-use. It assists all users, even those who lack knowledge, by providing a user-friendly user interface. 
Efficient. In three steps, it recovers 200+ kinds of data from HDD/SSD/USB/SD card, etc. 
Compatible. It is compatible with Windows 11/10/8/7/Server.
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Saving your recovered files in another drive will be better.

Step 1. Install and launch MyRecover > Hover the mouse over the drive saved deleted files before, and click Scan.


Step 2. Input filenames and extensions to target your wanted files quickly. Date modified, Type, Size, Path, etc., can help you filter the scanned results.


Step 3. Go to Deleted files/Recycle Bin > locate the OneDrive folder > select what you want > click Recover x files.


You can also use this tool to recover data from formatted hard drive.

To sum up

This article introduces “Why OneDrive files missing after sync” and offers methods to to recover files disappeared from Onedrive.

In general, you could try to check if your network is malfunctioned or not; if so, reconnect to the network.

Then, try to pause sync and resume it, or contact the file owner.

When you need to recover deleted files from OneDrive, MyRecover, the professional Windows data recovery tool will be your helper.

Lora · Editor
Lora is an editor of AOMEI Technology. She is also a tester and editor of AOMEI Data Recovery Tools. -- "Keep testing, write the most useful tutorials for helping people recover the lost data for Windows and phones" is the most meaningful thing for her. Dedicated to creating helpful tutorials, she hopes her tutorial can assist users to effortlessly solve data loss problems on their personal computers and mobile phones.