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OneDrive to be M1-Native on Mac by Late 2021

Posted June 9, 2021 | Apple M1 | Apple Silicon | Mac and macOS | OneDrive | Windows


One year after Apple shipped its first M1-based Macs, Microsoft plans to finally update OneDrive to run natively on that hardware.

“We are thrilled to announce that later this year, we will be updating OneDrive for Mac to run natively on M1-powered Macs,” Microsoft’s Ankita Kirti explains. “This means that OneDrive will take full advantage of the performance improvements on M1, making you even more productive on the latest iMac, MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro, and Mac mini.”

Today, OneDrive uses Apple’s Rosetta 2 translation service to run on M1-based Macs, but I noted serious performance and usability issues on a Mac Mini and a MacBook Pro. After the latter experience, Microsoft asked me if I’d share my OneDrive application logs, and I agreed. But they never told me about the results of their investigation.

In other news, Microsoft is also bringing other features to OneDrive.

Known Folder Move (KFM) support is arriving soon on macOS, allowing users to redirect their Desktop, Documents, and/or Pictures folders to OneDrive. The OneDrive sync experience is getting a big update later this year that will improve the Finder experience for OneDrive in part by adding the OneDrive folder under Locations in the Finder sidebar. And the OneDrive Sync Admin Reports feature for Windows is coming to macOS as well, though it’s not clear when.

Microsoft says, too, that it recently improved the performance and reliability of OneDrive on the Mac, and has reduced CPU usage by 40 percent. It also now allows IT administrators to prevent users from uploading specific file types (like .exe and .mp3 files) during OneDrive sync. And later this month, OneDrive users on iPhones and iPads will be able to edit Word and PowerPoint documents that they have marked for offline use. Offline editing is also coming to the standalone Word and PowerPoint apps.

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