Enable or disable OneDrive on Windows

OneDrive, the default online storage and synchronization service for Windows 10 and Office 365, offers many powerful features and applications for more platforms than any of its competitors.


  • Great interface.
  • Clients for Android, iOS, Mac and Windows.
  • Convenient integration with Windows 10 and Office 365.
  • High functionality of the service and photo management.
  • Powerful file and document sharing.


  • Smaller virtual storage than Google Drive.

Customize OneDrive in Windows.

What is OneDrive in Windows

OneDrive is Microsoft’s answer to Apple’s iCloud and Google Drive. In fact, OneDrive preceded these cloud synchronization services for at least five years, albeit under other names such as SkyDrive, Live Mesh and FolderShare. The functionality and design of OneDrive provide comfort and reliability, with a huge range of features, online office applications and support for all popular platforms. OneDrive has an attractive web and mobile interface, streaming music, photo AI, real-time sharing and powerful search. Microsoft's backup service offers synchronization and access to applications not only for PCs, but also for Mac, Android, iOS and Xbox. It seamlessly integrates with Microsoft Office (both in installed and online versions) and includes wide functionality for photo presentations. Apple's rival iCloud is available on Apple devices only.

Like iCloud Free on Apple and Google Drive, OneDrive performs many different functions. If you just need access to documents or multimedia files, use simple online storage accessible from the Internet. If you want the same set of files to be available on multiple PCs, use folder synchronization. For Windows 10 users, the service supports device settings, including screen locks and background images of the desktop and browsers. OneDrive also synchronizes Office documents and provides co-creation and concurrent use across devices. The variety of functions provides access to different content, the use of different clients and a wide functionality of the application. Content types include documents, photos, videos, music, or settings. Customers include a computer, a smartphone, and the Internet, and functions are syncing, viewing, playback, and simple storage.

Files on request

One of the most popular features that were ever integrated into OneDrive was the implementation of Windows 10 Fall Creators Update “Files on Demand”. Thanks to this, you no longer need to copy and open access to files from each computer or another client separately. Instead, as the name implies, files are only uploaded upon request when they are opened. You can also assign a folder and files for offline downloading in automatic mode. Local files and folders, as well as documents available in the cloud storage, now have a new feature - the Status column, which shows a cloud icon when synchronization is activated. Files awaiting download are indicated with a round arrow. Subsequently, Google introduced a similar opportunity, albeit for G Suite clients. Apple iCloud Drive still does not have this feature.

Unlike previous versions of the OS, in Windows 10 the service is already built into the shell of the explorer, so you can manage its functions directly from the folder with the necessary documents or files. Cortana search results now include OneDrive files, and Groove Music can still transfer any music files you upload to OneDrive (although it no longer offers a paid subscription service for streaming music).

Mobile customers

The OneDrive mobile app has gone beyond the smartphone: the Apple Watch Series 3 and Android Wear versions are now available, which allow you to customize features such as, for example, a cyclic change of the latest photos on the dial. Tablets on iOS, Windows 10 and Android can also use OneDrive applications. If for any reason you cannot use the app, simply launch your browser and log in to your OneDrive account online. The mobile application allows you not only to view the data in OneDrive, but also upload photos and transfer them to anyone who has an email address or a Facebook account. Photos and folders can be sorted using the tag system, also available to other users of the service.

Fortunately, Microsoft immediately added the ability to search for mobile apps. With the option "Automatic upload to OneDrive" you can download any photos (and possibly videos) taken on the device automatically. Another service from OneDrive for mobile users is the collection of Office Mobile applications - Word Mobile, Excel Mobile, PowerPoint Mobile and OneNote. They are available for Android, iOS and Windows 10 (both desktop and mobile), as well as simply from a browser on the Internet. In fact, for all of these applications, the OneDrive web version contains a large drop-down menu of tiles. The documents you create are automatically synchronized with all OneDrive access points.

OneDrive on the web

OneDrive syncs with other Microsoft online services through the program’s main menu. These include Mail (Outlook.com or Hotmail), People (social networking app and aggregator), and a calendar. The site provides easy access to all your OneDrive storage and media. The service is distinguished by a simple and intuitive interface, where all the necessary files, recent documents, shared folders and groups are displayed in one menu in the left part of the window.

Multimedia support

The Microsoft cloud service plays and displays all the most common file types that you may want to save to the cloud, including documents, music, photos, and videos:

  • Documents

You can download, view, edit and download files and documents not only using the iCloud web interface or in a browser, but also using integrated Office Online applications. OneDrive serves as the primary folder for all Office Online document files, like Google Drive for Google Docs. As with Google Docs, multiple authors can edit documents at the same time. The icon shows who edits the document and where, as well as updates its content in real time. Office Online also offers better document formatting accuracy.

  • Music

Built in Windows 10 to play music Groove allows you to transfer any tracks directly to OneDrive. The function works similar to iTunes and iCloud for Apple devices, as well as Google Play Music for Android. The web version of OneDrive can also play songs directly, but, unlike the installed Groove application in Windows 10, it cannot play lossless music files in FLAC format. Unfortunately, the Groove app for Xbox has the same limitation, as the company is concerned about limiting piracy.

  • Photos and videos

OneDrive does an impressive job of displaying photos and videos in its web interface. The service even auto-tags images using AI, as Flickr does, for example, by grouping all the pictures of dogs, people or buildings by specific tags. This makes the search more powerful because you can narrow the results by tag type. Google Photos offers similar search options, although it does not support tag display. Both of these services also allow you to display the place on the map where the photo was taken (if it is associated with geotagging) and the EXIF ​​data of the camera. Apple iCloud has no tag search or EXIF ​​data. You can also specify read and edit permissions.

When you share a video in OneDrive, the cloud service transcodes it on the fly using MPEG-DASH to match the receiver’s bandwidth capabilities. Thus, users will no longer have problems with playing files online through a smartphone browser or with poor coverage of the mobile Internet operator. The video is encoded and adjusted to the client’s network bandwidth. OneDrive also includes OCR, which extracts text from images. If you save a photo with text, the Info panel on the OneDrive page will already contain the extracted text area, which you can cut and paste anywhere. Google Drive Help has a section on OCR, but it’s almost impossible to find. As for iCloud or Dropbox, here you can forget about OCR support.

Using OneDrive with Windows UWP Applications

The UWP version (Universal Windows Platform or Modern Store application) for Windows 10 does not contain any additional features and offers the same set of services as Explorer. One possibility is that you can make OneDrive a shared folder in the default ShareWare panel of the default UWP application. Any modern Windows-style UWP application can use OneDrive cloud storage. For example, the FotoEditor application, a kind of Instagram without social networks, allows you to save the filtered image immediately to OneDrive. It also allows you to open photos for editing from cloud folders. At the same time, the Windows Store already contains many different programs and services that are synchronized with the OneDrive automatically, and their list is constantly updated and grows.

One place in the cloud for your digital life

The cloud solution from Microsoft is perfectly combined with OneDrive, combining file synchronization with cloud storage. Cross-platform support for Android, iOS, MacOS and Xbox devices is a very competent and convenient solution from Microsoft. This, however, does not mean that there is no other choice - Google Drive is also an excellent service, especially for those who prefer the Google digital ecosystem, which offers more generous 15 GB free storage. But OneDrive is the only cloud service that allows you to extract any file from your PC and the cloud of a single major platform that also allows you to set passwords and expiration dates for shared files.

Enable OneDrive in Windows

Most often, the application comes with Windows by default, so you do not need to turn it on.

Ways to shut down

You can disable or delete through the PC menu, using the Group Policy Editor, via regedit, via cmd, and using third-party applications, such as CCleaner.

Through settings

The fastest and easiest way to do this is from the Settings application. Start by launching the Settings app. The quick way to do this is to open the “Start” menu, and then click “Settings” or press the “Windows + I” keys on the keyboard. Then open the “Services” category. Wait until all the applications available in your OS are loaded, and then scroll through the list until you find the utility you need. Highlight OneDrive, and then click Delete. Windows 10 will report that "This application and related information will be deleted" and will ask you to confirm your action by clicking the "Delete" button again. Do it! Then the UAC (User Account Control) confirmation screen will appear, where you need to click Yes if you want to continue. The utility will be completely removed. You will not see it on the taskbar or in Explorer.

How to remove OneDrive from Windows 7

The OneDrive application is not installed by default in Windows 7, but you can install it manually. In addition, some manufacturers can integrate OneDrive on their laptops and Windows 7 PCs. No matter how OneDrive got on your Windows 7 computer, here’s how to remove it:

  • Start by opening the control panel. A quick way to do this is to launch the Start menu, and then click the Control Panel shortcut. Then go to the “Programs and Features” section.
  • After downloading the list of installed utilities, scroll through it until you find OneDrive. Double-click the program or right-click and select "Delete."

If you see the UAC (User Account Control) notification, click “Yes” to continue the deletion process. After a few seconds, the OneDrive program will be removed from your Windows 7 computer.

How to disable OneDrive from Windows 8.1

In Windows 8.1, OneDrive is not just an application that you can remove from your PC. Unfortunately, OneDrive is part of the Windows 8.1 operating system and cannot be removed. However, you can disable and hide it if you do not want it to work on your device. To do this, you must perform several steps. First, open the OneDrive panel from the Start screen. Go to the start screen and find the OneDrive plate. Then click the right mouse button or touch and hold it, and in the menu that appears, select "Disable". Then open the "PC Settings". Click here or touch OneDrive. In the "file storage" section, set the "Save OneDrive Default Documents" switch to Off. In the “Photo Film” section, select the “Do not upload photos” option and switch “Automatically upload video to OneDrive” to Off. In “Sync Settings”, switch “Sync settings on this computer” to Off. In addition, in “Sync Settings”, turn Off for “Backup settings for this computer” and “Backup settings”.

In the "Available Connections" section, disable all available functions:

  • "Downloading Files".
  • "Downloading files even when I'm roaming."
  • "Synchronization and backup settings."
  • "Sync and backup settings, even when I'm roaming."

Using Group Local Policy Editor

Group Policy Editor is a special component of Windows that allows you to make changes to the structure of its components and services. Open the Run dialog (Win + R) and enter gpedit.msc here. A window will open that resembles the usual system components window. We are interested in the parameters in the OneDrive directory. To find it, follow the path Computer Configuration - Administrative Templates - Windows Components. Find the option Prevent OneDrive from storing files. "Fail" in it and put a tick in front of Enabled. Click OK and restart the PC.

Using Registry Editor

Open the Run dialog and type regedit here, press Enter. We are interested in the OneDrive directory, located in the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE / Software / Policies / Microsoft / Windows folder. Create a DWORD 32 parameter here, name it DisableFileSync and set the value to 1. Done!

Via command line

Run a command prompt (execute cmd) and enter taskkill / f / im OneDrive.exe here. Now you need to register a command that disables the program:

  • % SystemRoot% \ System32 \ OneDriveSetup.exe / uninstall - for 32-bit Windows 10.
  • % SystemRoot% \ SysWOW64 \ OneDriveSetup.exe / uninstall - for 64-bit Windows 10.

Reboot the PC. Done!

Using CCleaner

Using third-party applications, you can easily get rid of unnecessary services and programs on your PC. For example, using CCleaner will be one of the best options. Launch the program, select “Settings” or “Tools” on the left, and select OneDrive in the list of installed programs. Find the Uninstall or Uninstall button on the right, click it and wait for the operation to complete.

How to remove OneDrive icon from explorer

In most cases, after the program is deleted, its shortcut remains. To completely remove OneDrive from Windows Explorer, follow these steps:

  1. Open the registry editor and go to

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT \ CLSID \ {018D5C66-4533-4307-9B53-224DE2ED1FE6}.

  1. In the right window, find the parameter IsPinnedToNameSpaceTree.
  2. Double click it and change the value to "0".
  3. Done!

Now you know everything about how to disable or remove the application. If you have any difficulties or you know another effective way to turn off the service, share it with our readers in the comments.