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How to Disable Windows 10 OneDrive

Today companies like Amazon, Google, and Microsoft are making huge profits from the cloud. OneDrive is Microsoft's effort to generate revenue by hosting files in the cloud. Microsoft's cloud storage started out in 2007 as SkyDrive. In 2014 it became OneDrive and provided unlimited storage space to Office 365 subscribers. Now that's been reduced to 5GB free, and you pay $1.99 a month for up to 50 GB of storage.

Thousands of companies are slimming at the mouth for some of that cloud money. In my opinion cloud services and cloud storage will soon become a commodity. To get into the cloud business, all someone has to do is set up a server farm in the lowest cost country. Sooner than you think these companies won't be able to give away cloud services. In my opinion most companies should keep their storage in house, and since most computers come with 1TB of storage, private users should have no use for cloud storage.

To make sure Microsoft doesn't place your files on OneDrive without you're even knowing it, you may want to disable it on your PC. Microsoft claims OneDrive is built in to Windows 10, and can't be uninstalled. But they do provide instructions to stop the sync process, so it doesn't send your files to OneDrive.

1. In the Notifications area in System Tray at the bottom of the screen, right-click on the OneDrive icon. You might have to click the Show Hidden Icons arrow to find OneDrive.

OneDrive icon in System Tray

2. In the popup menu that appears, click Settings, and on the Settings tab, uncheck all the boxes under General.

3. On the Auto save tab, set the Documents and Pictures lists to This PC only, and uncheck the other boxes.

4. On the Account tab, click on Choose folders.

5. In the Sync your OneDrive files to this PC box, check and uncheck the box at Sync all files and folders in my OneDrive. (The first check selects all the boxes, then the uncheck clears them all.) Click on the [OK] button to close the box and return to settings.

If you just can't resist storing your files in the cloud, Google Drive provides 15 GB of storage for free. Google Drive provides plug-ins that support storage integration with Microsoft Office desktop apps. Install the plug-in, then the added storage system shows up as an option when you want to open or save files in Office. Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides offer the ability to open and edit Office files on the web and on mobile devices.

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