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How to dominate Microsoft OneDrive

How to dominate Microsoft OneDrive


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Microsoft OneDrive is a free and useful cloud storage option that comes standard with both Windows 10 and 11. While many functions of OneDrive will automatically run in the background, it is worth taking a few moments to properly set up your OneDrive for maximum efficiency and utility.

With just a few simple steps, you can take full advantage of Microsoft’s potent cloud technology.

  1. Getting started with Microsoft OneDrive

    Opening OneDrive, a free storage option for Windows.

    Each free OneDrive account comes with 25 GB of storage on the house. This is plenty of space for your documents, images, videos, and audio clips. Each file type will automatically be uploaded to storage when you save it on your PC or phone. Then, you can easily access the files from any other device that has access to your Microsoft account.

  2. Enabling OneDrive on your mobile device

    OneDrive is easy to use and navigate on mobile platforms.

    The first thing you will want to do is ensure your files appear on both your PC and phone. The main benefit of cloud storage is the ability to access your files anywhere. Go to the Google Play Store (or the app store if you have an Apple device) and search for OneDrive. The top result on either platform should be the official version. To verify this, ensure the publisher of the app is Microsoft before downloading.

    After the installation is complete, log in with the same Microsoft Account you use on other devices. This step can be repeated for all devices that you own.

  3. Determine where files are located

    The icons next to each folder that display the file's location.

    To determine where a file is located, you need to observe the symbol under each file icon. A green circle with a checkmark denotes that the file is both on your device and stored in the cloud. If you simply see a cloud symbol, then the file in question is not stored on your device.

    The person icon indicates when a file has been shared with at least one other user. If you see arrows next to a file, it means it is currently being uploaded to the cloud. To see more information about any file, simply click on it. You can then see a list of users that have access to the file.

  4. Sharing files with other users

    Using OneDrive to share your files with others.

    In addition to transferring files between your own devices, you can selectively share files with other Microsoft OneDrive users. The process is as simple as right-clicking on the file and selecting share from the drop-down menu. Clicking anyone with the link can edit will allow you to set some basic parameters before sending a file.

    If you have a paid Microsoft 365 subscription, you can enable password and expiration timers for added levels of security. If you trust the user completely, you can simply click share link to save time and bypass additional setup.

  5. Track the version history of files you share

    This screen in OneDrive lists all prior file iterations.

    – When collaborating with multiple users, it is vital to know which changes have been made to each file and at what time each edit occurred. OneDrive automatically records each change to files stored in the application.

    – When things go awry, you can even revert to previous file versions from before the issue occurred. Right-click on the file you wish to examine and select version history from the drop-down menu.

    • When the list of file version appears, click the ellipses next to the version you wish to interact with. This menu allows you to download the specific file version or revert the shared file back to a previous state.
  6. Vaulting sensitive files

    In the Personal Vault, you can safely store private data.

    For files that must remain secure, Microsoft introduced a vaulting system. You can lock files behind two-factor authentication and have each session expire within 20 minutes of inactivity. To do this, find the personal vault under my files. You can add files to it just as you would any other folder. To access each file again, you will need to verify your identity by entering a code sent to your email.

    Alternatively, you may download an authenticator app on your phone to speed up the 2FA security check.

To the Cloud and beyond

Now that your Microsoft OneDrive is set up to take advantage of all major features, you can get back to what matters most — staying productive and having fun while doing so. When cloud storage is used effectively, you can work and play as hard as you need to. To get started, download Microsoft OneDrive app for free today.



Ever since his brother brought home the original PlayStation, Doug Fakler knew he would be a gamer for the rest of his life. He has been glued to the screen with a controller in hand for over 20 years. While he will always acknowledge that gameplay is king, he's equally interested in the stories that can be told through interactive means. This inspired him to earn a bachelor's degree in Game Design from Full Sail University in 2015.

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