If you have migrated from Windows to a Linux operating system, chances are you have used Microsoft OneDrive. It’s built into Windows 10 and 11, which means most of your personal files have been synced there.
Linux operating systems do not have OneDrive pre-installed; there is not even an official app. So, how do you transfer data from OneDrive to a Linux PC? The answer lies in dedicated software: OneDrive Client for Linux, compatible with all major distributions.
Why is OneDrive needed on Linux?
Linux has a strange relationship with famous cloud storages. Some offer Linux compatible clients, but it’s often just as easy to set up your own cloud with ownCloud or NextCloud.
But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use OneDrive on Linux. While it’s proprietary and it may break your open source susceptibility, you may have a history with OneDrive. Removing your data from Microsoft servers means, first of all, the ability to access it. Accessing OneDrive from your Linux OS is the way to do it, and it’s easier than installing Microsoft Office on Linux.
It’s possible to open OneDrive in a browser, but it’s incredibly slow and not worth the time.
The reason I do this is simple. After years of paying for a monthly Office 365 subscription, I finally decided that I no longer needed it. With 50 GB of storage that I don’t want to lose (including many photos of my kids taken on Windows Phone devices), data sync is a priority.
(The “free” storage option is only 5 GB.)
Use the best option: OneDrive client for Linux
Several OneDrive clients have been released for Linux over the years, but most have been abandoned. One project still in development is the OneDrive client for Linux.
This software is available on GitHub and can be installed on almost any Linux distribution. All steps are on the GitHub page to get it installed in just a few minutes. To demonstrate how easy it is, the section below shows you how to install OneDrive Client for Linux on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS.
By installing this software, you will not get hidden access to OneDrive. It’s a full-blown OneDrive client for Linux, at least as good as the one for Android, if not a true OneDrive client for Windows.
Features in the OneDrive client for Linux include state caching, real-time file monitoring and sync, file upload and download validation, bandwidth limiting, and resumable downloads. The software supports OneDrive free, OneDrive subscription, OneDrive for Business, national cloud deployments (such as the US government) and other Office 365 options, SharePoint and Office 365 libraries, and file shares.
In short, if you need access to OneDrive on Linux – short term or long term – you need to use the OneDrive client for Linux.
Installing OneDrive for Linux on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS.
Although the OneDrive client for Linux works with most distributions, the following steps demonstrate how to install it on Debian-based systems (specifically Ubuntu 22.04 LTS).
Start by making sure your system is fully up to date.
sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get upgrade -y sudo apt-get dist-upgrade -y sudo apt-get autoremove -y sudo apt-get autoclean -y
After the update, you need to reboot the system
Installing the OneDrive client for Linux on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS requires the use of the OpenSuSE Build Service repository. Start by adding an unlock key:
wget -qO - https:
Next, add the repository:
echo "deb [arch=$(dpkg --print-architecture) signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/obs-onedrive.gpg] https:
Next, add the repository:
sudo apt-get update
Finally, install the OneDrive client for Linux:
sudo apt install
Please note that the steps vary slightly between distributions. For example, Ubuntu 22.10 requires different repository keys and commands (depending on version).
Installing OneDrive for Linux on other distributions
As noted, the above steps are for Ubuntu.
However, Arch and Manjaro can use pamac:
pamac build onedrive-abraunegg
The software can also be installed from source. Learn more about the client OneDrive for Linux on GitHub.
How to sync OneDrive with Linux
The OneDrive client for Linux is a command line tool by default. Various commands are included, which you can access using the help command:
This is a fairly large list of options, with the most common ones listed at the top of the list.
To sync OneDrive with Linux, you need one command:
onedrive destination-directory [FILEPATH] –synchronize
Just provide the intended file path for your data and note the double dash before the sync command. As long as the destination has enough storage space, the data will sync from your OneDrive account on Linux.
For this to happen, you will need to enter your credentials. The OneDrive Client for Linux will display a link to open in your browser. After signing into your Microsoft account, copy the URL (the page will usually be blank) and paste it into the terminal window where needed. Then you should complete the authentication.
Meanwhile, you can confirm the sync status (whether new data will be added or files removed) with
Everything you need to use OneDrive of any scale and distribution can be found in the help file.
Go with mouse control with OneDriveGUI
If that’s not enough, or if you’re not familiar with the command line, you can use the OneDriveGUI tool instead. This is a frontend to the OneDrive client for Linux that provides a mouse and keyboard driven interface.
Start by going to the GitHub OneDriveGUI and downloading the AppImage.
Download: OneDriveGUI (is free)
Once this is done, open a terminal window at the download location and type:
chmod +x ./OneDriveGUI-[VERSION]-x86_64.AppImage
Be sure to replace [VERSION] version of the downloaded OneDriveGUI AppImage file.
(Also available version OneDriveGUI for Arch Linux.)
To use OneDriveGUI, you must first create a profile. After that, specify the file path for the directory if you have already started synchronization with the terminal tool.
After that, you need to authenticate (even if you already did it in the OneDrive for Linux client). It’s a more attractive interface, but the process is the same. After that, you’re ready to start using the OneDrive for Linux client in a more traditional desktop environment.
OneDrive for Linux just works
While the command line interface isn’t all that bad, OneDriveGUI obviously makes the OneDrive client for Linux more user-friendly. The app has everything you need to get your data from OneDrive and sync it to your preferred cloud. Meanwhile, if that seems too difficult, you can continue to use OneDrive with this software.
However, given how often Microsoft rethinks the authentication methods for their systems, this may not be a good long-term plan.
Regardless, the OneDrive client for Linux is a great way to access and sync OneDrive data with your Linux PC.
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