Microsoft 365 services are getting more tweaks to reduce network load

Two weeks ago, faced with heavily increased usage due to the coronavirus outbreak, Microsoft introduced some limitations for Microsoft 365 services in an attempt to reduce the network load and allow those services to keep functioning as normal. These restrictions included making the OneNote integration in Teams read-only and changing the syncing frequency of OneNote notebooks.

Today, the company is warning users of a few additional tweaks to further reduce the stress in its cloud services, as reported by ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley. This time around, the changes are pretty small, and they target users of OneDrive Files on Demand. If you've enabled large thumbnail previews of files will see a generic icon for image files, rather than an actual preview of the image, so as to prevent large numbers of images from being loaded when File Explorer (or the macOS Finder) is open.

There's also a clarification on how SharePoint backend operations are affected. Two weeks ago, the affected capabilities that Microsoft mentioned were migration, data loss prevention (DLP), and file management for newly-uploaded files. Today, Microsoft added that "apps that scan the service" can also be affected.

With many people continuing to work from home during the pandemic, it may take some time before the stress on Microsoft's services is relieved, but measures like this should help critical and essential services continue to function normally. It remains to be seen if more restrictions will have to put in place.

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