How to Set Up Microsoft OneDrive for Mac

Use OneDrive to store up to 5 GB in the cloud for free

What to Know

  • Open the Mac App Store and type OneDrive in the search bar. Choose Get to download the app.
  • Launch OneDrive and enter your Microsoft account details.
  • Click Choose OneDrive Folder Location and select a location.

This article explains how to set up and use Microsoft OneDrive for Macs on macOS 10.12 or newer. It includes information on optional paid storage plans.

How to Install Microsoft OneDrive on Macs With macOS Sierra (10.12) or Later

For OneDrive, you need a Microsoft account and OneDrive for Mac. Both are free. If you don't already have a Microsoft ID, go to the Microsoft ID signup screen and click Create a Microsoft account. Once you supply the requested information and create a password, you have a new Microsoft ID.

Download the free OneDrive app from the Mac App Store. It comes with 5 GB of cloud storage, with more available for a fee.

  1. Open the Mac App Store by clicking its icon on the Dock. Type OneDrive in the search bar to locate the app and select Get to download it.

    The App Store icon on the Mac Dock

    Alternatively, press Command+Spacebar, search for the App Store, then click it when it appears in the search results.

  2. Launch OneDrive and enter your Microsoft account credentials.

    OneDrive setup screen on a Mac
  3. To complete the installation, select a location for your OneDrive folder. Click Choose OneDrive Folder Location. You can place it anywhere on your Mac, including the Desktop.

    OneDrive Folder on Mac

How to Use OneDrive for the Mac

Microsoft OneDrive is a cloud-based storage and syncing solution that works on Mac, PC, and mobile devices with access to the internet. When you install OneDrive on your Mac, it appears to be just another folder. Drop a file or folder of any type into the OneDrive folder, and the data is immediately stored on the OneDrive cloud storage system.

Access your OneDrive folder using a web browser. Browser-based access allows you to make use of the cloud-based storage on any computing platform you find yourself using without having to install the OneDrive app. You can also access OneDrive from your iPhone and iPad by downloading the OneDrive app for iOS devices.

OneDrive can be used along with other cloud-based storage services, including Apple's iCloud, Dropbox, and Google Drive. There's nothing to stop you from using all four and taking advantage of the free storage tiers offered by each service.

OneDrive acts much like any other folder on your Mac. The only difference is that the data within it is also stored on remote OneDrive servers. In the OneDrive folder you'll find default folders labeled Documents, Pictures, Attachments, and Public. You can add as many folders as you want and create any system of organization that suits you.

OneDrive setup for Mac OS
OneDrive set up lets you pick where the OneDrive folder will be created. Screen shot courtesy of Coyote Moon, Inc.

Adding files is as simple as copying or dragging them to the OneDrive folder or appropriate subfolder. After you put files in the OneDrive folder, access them from any Mac, PC, or mobile device that has OneDrive installed. You can also access the OneDrive folder from any computer or mobile device using the web interface.

The OneDrive app runs as a menu-bar item that includes sync status for files kept in the OneDrive folder. Adjust preferences by selecting the OneDrive menu bar item and clicking the three-dot More button. You're set up and have 5 GB of free space to use. If you find out you need more cloud storage, it is available for a reasonable fee.

OneDrive Plans

OneDrive currently offers only a few tiers of service, including plans that are paired with Microsoft 365.

Plan Storage Price/Month
OneDrive Basic 5 GB 5 GB total storage Free
OneDrive 100 GB 100 GB total storage $1.99
OneDrive + Microsoft 365 Personal 1 TB for 1 user $6.99
OneDrive + Microsoft 365 Family 1 TB each for 6 users $9.99
Was this page helpful?