Join Garrick Chow for an in-depth discussion in this video What is OneDrive?, part of Learning OneDrive.
- OneDrive is Microsoft's cloud-based file storage service, that allows you to sync and share files between your computers and mobile devices so you can access them from anywhere you have an internet connection. You can also share files with other people via OneDrive, making it easy to send and receive documents, photos, or any other type of file which is especially convenient if you have either very large or numerous files to share. For example, that makes it very easy to share photos with other people. Instead of having to worry about attaching files in emails, and wondering if it'll hit the size limit for attachments, you can simply send a link to your photos on OneDrive.
OneDrive is similar to other cloud-based storage systems you may have heard of like Dropbox or Google Drive, but it also offers some distinct advantages, especially if you use other Microsoft products. For example, with OneDrive, you can use the online version of Microsoft office to edit, create and collaborate on documents, spreadsheets and presentations. OneDrive is also built directly into Windows 8.1 and later. So you can access your files without having to install additional software. Working with files stored on OneDrive looks and feels exactly the same as working with the files stored locally on your computer, except the changes you make are instantly saved online.
Now if you're using a Mac, you can still use OneDrive, but you'll need to install the free OneDrive app, and we'll take a look at how to do that as well. And speaking of free, just to be clear, OneDrive is free for all users who have a Microsoft account. If you're not sure if you have a Microsoft account, here's some ways you might have created one. If you have an Xbox, and you sign up for Xbox Live to play games online, you have a Microsoft account. If you have a subscription to Office 365, you have a Microsoft account. Or if you have a hotmail or outlook.com account, you have a Microsoft account. And again, if you're using Windows 8 or later, you sign in to Windows using an account that can be used with OneDrive.
So if you have one or more of these types of accounts, you'll use the same username and password that you use for them to sign in to OneDrive. Next you might be wondering how much storage space you get with a OneDrive account. Currently, as I'm recording this video in the fall of 2015, all free users receive 15gb of storage space. If you subscribe to Office 365, that gets bumped up to a full terabyte of space, and as you might imagine, Microsoft is happy to provide more space at an additional cost. Here are the current prices for more space, right now you can get 100gb for $1.99 a month, 200gb for $3.99 a month, or pay $6.99 a month for a full terabyte that comes with an Office 365 subscription.
However and this is very important, Microsoft has announced that in 2016, they'll be lowering their storage plans. Instead of 100 and 200gb options, they'll be offering 50gb plans for $1.99 a month. And they'll also be reducing the 15gb of storage that free users receive down to just 5gb. Whether they actually go through with this rather significant downgrade, or if their users convince them not to remains to be seen. But depending on when you're watching this video, you might see different information here, or you might want to just bear this information in mind, as you decide whether to use OneDrive and what to store in it.
According to Microsoft, even users who currently have the free 15gb plan will be downgraded to the 5gb plan when they make the switch, so again, just bear that in mind. But with that said, there's your basic primer on Microsoft OneDrive. We'll start getting in to the details next.
- Signing in to OneDrive
- Setting up OneDrive on Mac and Windows
- Uploading files and folders
- Renaming, copying, downloading, and deleting files
- Sharing files
- Searching files
- Working with photos in OneDrive
- Working with Office Online files