OneDrive as a Standalone


Microsoft will release OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) as a standalone service on April 1st, 2014. Users can now buy space on OneDrive without purchasing the entire SharePoint or Office 365 suite.

As a standalone service OneDrive will be an online storage system for the documents that would typically be saved on a user’s hard drive.  Saving documents into the system and accessing those documents is very easy to do.

OneDriveInstalling OneDrive on your computer creates a monitored folder that links to your OneDrive Library (typcially, in a SharePoint implementation, this would be a library in your MySite). Save documents into or open documents from that library to access the OneDrive folder. Your changes are synced automatically.

This is very similar to the way that Drive, Box, and Dropbox work, but OneDrive offers a couple of additional features.

Office Online

OneDrive, as a personal or hosted tool, also comes with access to Office Online (AKA Office Web Apps), the light versions of Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint, and Word. By default, documents opened from the OneDrive website application will open using this light software if possible. Documents opened from the synced folder still open in the desktop application.

Excel Online through Office Web Apps

Fetch Files with OneDrive

OneDrive Fetch FileUsers can access more than just the files they add to their OneDrive folder.  After installing the PC OneDrive application and connecting to the service, any file on your computer is accessible through the OneDrive website application.

So if you forget to add a file to OneDrive before leaving the office and want to use it from your home computer, the web application at will give you access. (See Microsoft’s Article)

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