OneDrive for Business Will Make it Easier to Create, Share and Find Files

Posted on March 10, 2015 by Paul Thurrott in Office 365 with 0 Comments

If you use both OneDrive and OneDrive for Business, you know that the latter, while built on a powerful and enterprise-ready foundation, lacks many useful features that are available in the consumer version of the service. This is going to change in 2015, and it all starts this month with some long-overdue improvements to OneDrive for Business.

Microsoft previously revealed that it would essentially merge OneDrive (for consumers) and OneDrive for Business, creating a single backend and unified client experiences on the web, in Windows, and in mobile apps. As part of this change, the firm has started referring to OneDrive for Business as simply “OneDrive,” which can be confusing. You can see this usage in a blog post this week describing the changes to OneDrive for Business.

Because I prefer clarity over marketing, I will continue to refer to OneDrive for Business by its real name to keep it more clearly differentiated from the consumer offering. Over time, if Microsoft’s plan works, these distinctions will disappear. But we’re not anywhere close to that time yet.

That said, Microsoft has finally begun moving forward. And now, OneDrive for Business users can look forward to the following improvements in OneDrive for Business on the web, which will be rolled out by the end of the month.

Recent files. The Recent Files view will now display in a card layout instead of a simple file list, consistent with Delve. These cards display a preview of each file’s content plus information about ownership (your files, files shared with you, files you are editing on a team site).


Simpler file actions. Microsoft is improving the menu that appears when you click the More (“…”) item next to a file so that it now includes Move or Copy and Delete items in addition to Open/Edit, Download, Share, Rename, Properties and Advanced.


Smart search. When you search for files, OneDrive for Business will now search your own files as well as those that have been shared with you by others.


Simpler folder sharing. You can now invite people to a folder as its created, in addition to being able to share that folder later at any time.


Obviously, none of these are huge changes. But given how stilted OneDrive for Business has become, baby steps are better than no steps.

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