Overview of OneDrive for Business

OneDrive for Business

OneDrive for Business is a feature set that is part of Office 365. The features included in the set are as follows:

A desktop app sync tool

  • This tool is used for syncing files from a user PC to their OneDrive for Business
  • This tool can be installed via the Office 2013 install or a standalone installer. It is built into Windows 8.1, but also available on Windows 7 and 8.
  • When you install and setup the OneDrive desktop app on a Windows PC, a copy of your OneDrive is downloaded to your PC and put in the “OneDrive” folder. This folder is kept in sync with your online OneDrive.  Note this refers to OneDrive not OneDrive for Business.  OneDrive for business is a bit different, once installed, the app just sort of sits until you sync a library at which point it add a favorite in Windows Explorer to that library which now behaves much like any other folder in explorer.
  • This features provides a means by which to sync a user’s OneDrive for business as well as other SharePoint site libraries to the user’s computer up to a 20,000 item limit. It is important to note that both folders and files count toward this limit.  It is also EXTREMELY important to note that you can ONLY sync at the library level, so you’ll want to be creating libraries in your OneDrive for Business vs just adding to the already existing documents.
  • Since you are syncing to SharePoint libraries, you will be protected from overwriting document and potentially losing data provided that versioning is turned on in the SharePoint library. By default the Documents library in OneDrive for Business has versioning turned on.
  • It should be noted that this Sync tool IS NOT a backup tool, does not work much like a backup tool, and can only replace backup tools in very specific cases.

A personal cloud storage location with a data cap of 1 TB

  • This is often used to replace a user’s personal network share.
  • This data is available on a per OneDrive basis, it is not possible to repurpose the data to another one drive or to the Office 365 tenant
  • OneDrive data is separate from Office 365 tenant data and is not transferrable.

A personal SharePoint site

    • This personal site has the same feature set as a typical SharePoint site and can be used much like any other SharePoint site. The user can create list, libraries and additional sites within their own OneDrive for Business.
  • After a user account is deleted or the license is removed that OneDrive, along with all documentation and content within it will be deleted after 14 days. The user’s manager will receive an email alerting them to the impending deletion, so that they can copy any business related information that they might need. It is important to note that the deletion is permanent, and the items will not be moved to a recycle bin.


  • From this screen users can keep track of documents they are following.

Site folders

  • An easy way to access libraries on sites that a user is following.


  • Search allows a user to quickly search for documents within their OneDrive


Content can be shared with people inside your organization, or outside your organization outside sharing depends upon tenant settings. See below for options.


The sharing features are the same as any other SharePoint site except that the only permissions you can grant a user are view or edit.



About tbithell
I am the Chief Technical Architect of Portals at B2B Technologies, LLC in Atlanta GA. I first started working on SharePoint in 2005, and have built SharePoint portals and developed custom solutions for a wide variety of users. I have a MS in Computer Science and am a SharePoint 2010 MCITP and MCPD. I am very excited about the new version, and will be blogging about it on a regular basis as I explore the newly released Preview and future releases.

One Response to Overview of OneDrive for Business

  1. Pingback: OneDrive for Business DOES NOT have a file limit of 20,000 | sharepointv15

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