What is offline files in Windows 10?
Thanks to Sync Center, you can create offline files in Windows 10. It refers to a copy of network files and folders always in sync between local computer and network servers, and these data are kept available offline on your computer, even when your server is slow, not connected or unavailable. Moreover, you can see all data made offline at anytime, and it's limited to this. By default, the network folders online only are empty, no files, if your computer is not connected to network drive.
Beside enabling offline files in Sync center and always available offline mode, your network files may also be offline in the following situations.
The connected server is unavailable.
The network connection is slower than a configurable threshold.
Work offline mode is enabled in File Explorer
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 and server, you need to make them always available files with Sync Center.
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. This folder is used to keep offline files in sync between your computer and network drive. Usually, it's located at C:\windows\CSC folder if your system drive letter is C.
How to enable/disable offline files in Windows 10?
Usually, you should create a shared folder to save the network files and folders. If you want to make it always offline, the first step is to map the network drive to local computer, and then turn on offline files in Windows 10. Also, disabling offline files is also included at the end. Now, without further ado, let's start.
Step 1. Sync network drive to local drive
1. Connect network drive and find the shared folder.
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.
3. Make files or folders always available offline.
Go to the mapped network drive, also called offline files folder or its subfolder, right-click the files or folder you want to acess at local computer and select Always available offline from the context menu.
4. Wait for the final result.
Now, you will see a message, saying “ your files will be available offline”, just wait and then disconnect your network drive after this task ends. To confirm, please go to the mapped network drive and check your offline files.
Note: Some users report "network files offline when online in Windows 10 ", which is strange, right. How to solve it? You can try to disable and enable offline files in Sync Center again. It does not 100% work, but this is only way I know.
Step 2. How to turn on offline files in Windows 10?
To turn on offline files in Windows 10, there are 3 common used ways. You can try one of them
in the following. Of course, these methods are still applied in Window 7 and Windows 8.
Method 1: Configure offline files in Windows 10 by Sync Center
1. Open Sync center. Go to Control Panel, switch its view to "Large icon" or "Small icons", then find Sync Center and click it to open.
2. Click Manage offline files and Enable offline files subsequently. Please remember to restart your computer to activate Offline Files folder. If not, you will not offline files folder on the mapped network drive.
Note: After you enable offline files, you will see the Disable offline files option when you access Offline Files window again, click it and restart your computer to make changes available. This is easy, right? You can do it.
Method 2: 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. Access offline files setting and enable it. After that, close the local group policy, and see if Offline Files is enabled in Sync Center.
Go to Computer Configuration > Administrator templates > Network > Offline Files key, double-click Allow or Disallow the use of Offline Files feature and select Enabled in the next window.
Note: To disable offline files in Windows 10 via GPO, just go to "Allow or Disallow the use of Offline Files feature" again, then select Disabled. It's that simple, try yourself.
Method 3: Enable Offline Files in Windows 10 using Registry
1. Set start value of CSC in registry. Type registry in the search box, select and open it. Then, go to the following key, right-click on the blank, select new and DWORD (32-bit) Value (so do computer with 64-bit), set its name as Start and value to 1.
2. Configure of start value of CscService in registry. Go to the following key and set the start value to 2.
3. Restart your computer and make changes available.
Note: To disable offline files via registry, you just need to go to the same registry key and set its start value to 4. That's all, just check it.
How to sync offline files in Windows 10?
About offline files sync in Windows 10, you have two options, including syncing offline files manually and automatically. Detailed steps are below.
Method 1: Sync offline files manually
Step 1. Access the mapped network drive. Go to File Explore > This PC > network locations, then select the mapped network drive created in advance.
Step 2. Sync offline files. Right-click folders which contain offline files, then select Sync > Sync selected offline files.
Method 2: 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.
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 with Sync Center again.
Flexible way to sync files in Windows 10
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 to conflicts.
Want a flexible way to sync files, I recommend you free file sync software - AOMEI Backupper Standard. With it, you can sync files to network drive, internal hard drive, external storage device like USB flash drive, OneDrive etc, not just network location.
Besides, it still has many other advantages. It supports all Window system, including, Windows 7/8/8.1/10/XP/Vista. It has a clean interface and user-friendly design, so beginners can complete this process easily and quickly. It has various schedule settings that can bring much convenience to users, such as, track changes regularly with daily/weekly/monthly schedule sync, get final result without waiting with email notification, etc.
How to automatically sync files in Windows?
Step 1. Download AOMEI Backupper Standard, install and launch it. Then, click Sync and Basic Sync.
Step 2. Click + Add folder > Share/NAS and select your files or folders on network drive. After that, click the folder shapped button to select a local drive as destination. Also, if you want to backup to different locations, please connect it at first and be sure it can be recognized.
Note: If this is the first time to sync network files, you need to add network location first. Click Add network location, type IP address, username, password and save the infomation.
Step 3. To automatic backup your files, click Schedule and select your preference setings. The default setting is daily and you change to a longer interval if you think it's too short. Finally, click Start Sync.
Note: If you need to change your files very frequently or work with a team, it's suggested to use "Real-time sync". This feature will monitor your files and sync the changes instantly when detected. If needed, please upgrade to its advanced edition AOMEI Backupper Professional. If you are using server-based operating system, you can use AOMEI Backupper Server.
To sync offline files, the first thing is to enable offline files in Windows 10. Then, you can choose how to sync files. You can use either Offline Files folder or Sync Center. If it's not working properly, you can disable offline files and use a third-party software to sync files, AOMEI Backupper Standard, for example.
This software is much flexible and allows you to sync files with various devices, such as, local computer, network drive, cloud drive like Google Drive, Dropbox, NAS, and so on. At the same time, its sync options and schedule provides user great experience.
If you want to protect unlimited computers within your company, you can pick AOMEI Backupper Technician and enjoy more advanced features, like command line utility to backup/restore/clone, migrate OS to smaller SSD, clone NVME SSD, dissimilar hardware restore, delete old backup images, etc.