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It's official! Microsoft quietly confirms Windows 11 users can uninstall OneDrive too [Update]

OneDrive logo on a dark background with blue and grey boxes

Pretty much like Windows 11, Microsoft tries to find ways to push more users into using OneDrive or upgrading their existing capacity.

For example, in January last year, the company decided to test a new alert inside the Settings which would let users know that their cloud storage needed to be upgraded. Later on in the year in November, the tech giant added a dialog box which was essentially Microsoft asking why you needed to close OneDrive if you chose to do so.

On the topic of closing OneDrive, Microsoft has quietly published a new support document on its official website that aims to guide users on how they can turn it off. It is noteworthy that

The document is a small note that lets users know that they can simply unlink OneDrive if they needed to turn it off. It is a small article that links to a detailed guide Microsoft had published previously.

The new support doc says:

Turn off OneDrive in Windows

Windows 10

If you don't want to use OneDrive, the easiest solution is to unlink it. Follow the steps in Turn off, disable, or uninstall OneDrive, for how to unlink, hide, and uninstall OneDrive from your PC.

Interestingly, if you noticed, Microsoft has aimed this article only towards Windows 10 users and the company has seemingly forgotten about the ones on Windows 11. Perhaps the mention latest Windows OS will be added later.

The article back-links to a detailed guide titled "Turn off, disable, or uninstall OneDrive". While this support doc itself is not new, Microsoft made a couple of updates to it earlier this year and one of them is massive.

First, the company has added a section to highlight a separate section that talks about unlinking OneDrive. The updated section says:

If you just don't want to use OneDrive, the easiest solution is to unlink it - see the steps below.

Tips: If you want to stop OneDrive for a while, or not use all of it, here are some other solutions:

  • If you want to stop syncing for a short time, learn How to pause and resume sync in OneDrive.
  • If you want to stop syncing a file, read How to stop or cancel sync in OneDrive.
  • If you want to remove a OneDrive folder from your computer, follow the steps in Choose which OneDrive folders to sync to your computer.
  • If you want to cancel your OneDrive subscription, see How to cancel your Microsoft subscription.
  • If you want to sign out of OneDrive on the web, select your profile photo, then select Sign out.

Secondly, the page also added that OneDrive can be uninstalled on Windows 11 too, whereas this portion previously only mentioned Windows 10. The section reads:

Uninstall OneDrive

Windows 10/11

  1. Select the Start button, type Programs in the search box, and then select Add or remove programs in the list of results.

    Open installed apps

  2. Under Apps & features, find and select Microsoft OneDrive, and then select Uninstall. If you're prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

This change could likely be a result of the recent DMA compliance updates that Microsoft announced back in November for the EU.

You can find the full guide on this page on Microsoft's official website.

Update: This article was published with the misconception that OneDrive could not be uninstalled on Windows 11 prior to the recent changes. However, that's not the case. Regardless, this is still official confirmation from Microsoft that you can indeed uninstall OneDrive on Windows 11 as well, just like on Windows 10. It is possible that Microsoft made this update following the recent changes it has been making to comply with the E.U.'s DMA.

We apologize for the oversight!

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