OneDrive for Business mess up with Network Document Access

We are somewhat trying to make a seamless experience for our users when it comes to saving their documents on the network and when they go home and connect to their Office365 account and save a document to one drive.

I seem to be experiencing issues with OneDrive client that I cannot figure out. Maybe I am going about it entirely wrong.
Here is what I want to have happened. When a user is on the network, their MyDocuments folder is routed to their network folder so that I can centralize backups. When they open a Word document while on our network and go to save, it defaults to save to their home documents folder.

In order to avoid a user from having to know to save a document to a OneDrive folder if they want it always available, I simply created a Symbolic link which makes their documents folder automatically Sync to OneDrive online.

The problem I have run into is that if on our network they have a shortcut to a folder located somewhere else (such as another person’s documents folder), then when they are at home and go into OneDrive, all they have is a shortcut file which is pretty much useless because OneDrive cannot actually link back down to the original location of the other network folder. How can I get this to work?

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Thank You.


My perfect would be to NOT sync user profile folders or mydocs.

The best practice is to create a work folder, i.e c:\work and sync that.
Redirect their mydocs folder into that folder so they save all work into a folder which is backed up.

Different ways to fix this though.

Does the Office 365 package you are on have access to SharePoint?

If so you can create various sites, which can have document libraries added to them. You can then share sites to the appropriate users and even have it so it syncs to your PC just like one drive.

Only issue with this is permissions. As far as I know you can not grant specific permissions for users on files/folders within the site. You would need to create multiple sites and assign access based on what they need to do their job.

In my company we only use share point for certain things - Project work where we do not want our K1 (all contractors) users with full access to our main site servers is the main use. As above I also use it as a storage area away from the servers.

All our staff that have company laptops use VPN to access our company DFS server - although they do tend to just copy files across to their laptop and edit locally before saving back. I think you need to address why users are changing their VPN settings rather than looking for an alternative way of doing things.

There may be easier ways of doing what you want as well - but I find a lot of them cost too much money for an SMB or open up way of getting into your network (like having 2012 Essentials running allowing access to files and RDP via a web interface). I’d much rather have them connecting through VPN even if it is a small inconvenience to them.

You could look at Microsoft’s Direct Access. I did years ago and felt it was too much work to set up for a small company. Didn’t have the infrastructure or the data links needed at the time I looked. No idea on if it is any good (guess google/spiceworks will have something to say on it!).


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