How to Turn Off OneDrive in Windows 11

Use the Applications menu or close the program

What to Know

  • You can uninstall OneDrive from the Windows 11 applications menu.
  • Alternatively, you can close OneDrive to stop it working, or pause it temporarily.

This article will walk you through pausing, disabling, and uninstalling Microsoft OneDrive.

How to Pause OneDrive

If you just want OneDrive to stop backing up your files and folders right now, then pausing it is the quickest way to do so.

  1. On the desktop, select the small arrow next to the date and time in the bottom-right-hand corner. Select OneDrive.

    OneDrive icon on a Windows 11 desktop
  2. Now, in the OneDrive window, select the settings Cog icon in the top-right corner. Select Pause syncing.

    Pause Syncing in the OneDrive settings menu
  3. In the drop-down menu, select the duration of the pause you want. You can choose between two, eight, or 24 hours.

    2 hours under pause length in the OneDrive menu.

How to Turn OneDrive Off

You can close OneDrive down to stop it from performing any activities while your machine remains on. To turn it back on again, you can start up the app, or reboot your system.

  1. Select the OneDrive cloud icon in the bottom-right (if you don't see it on the taskbar, you may need to select the small arrow next to the date and time, first).

  2. Select the Settings menu.

    Settings cog menu on OneDrive on Windows 11.
  3. Select Quit OneDrive. A warning message will pop up asking if you are sure. Select Close OneDrive to confirm.

    Quit OneDrive in the OneDrive app on Windows 11.

How to Uninstall OneDrive

Uninstalling OneDrive is the most permanent solution to stopping it from backing up your files. On some versions of Windows, you will only be able to Disable the application, but it will have the same result: OneDrive will no longer operate.

  1. Press the Windows key, or select the magnifying glass Search icon and type Programs. Select Add or remove programs from the search results.

    Add or remove in Windows search menu.
  2. In this list of installed applications, use the search bar to look for OneDrive, or alternatively, scroll down the list until you find Microsoft OneDrive.

    Microsoft OneDrive application in the Apps and features menu.
  3. Select the three-dot menu icon on the right-hand side, then select Uninstall. It will ask for confirmation by saying "This app and its related info will be uninstalled." Select Uninstall again, to confirm.

    Three dot menu and uninstall under the OneDrive app in Windows 11.

    Alternatively, if your version of Windows doesn't allow you to uninstall the OneDrive application, you can select Disable instead. That will turn OneDrive off entirely, and stop it from starting up again in the future unless you re-enable it.

If you've disabled, paused, or uninstalled OneDrive, then you might want to consider one of these alternative cloud storage and cloud backup services.

  • How do I change my OneDrive folder location in Windows?

    In the Windows taskbar, select the Cloud icon to open OneDrive, then select the Settings gear > Settings > Account > Unlink this PC. When you set up OneDrive again, select Change Location when given the option to choose a folder location.

  • How do I sync my desktop to the cloud with OneDrive?

    To sync your desktop with OneDrive, open Desktop Properties and select Location > Move > OneDrive > New Folder. Name the folder Desktop, then choose Select Folder > Confirm.

  • Can I access my OneDrive from anywhere?

    Yes. You can access your OneDrive on any device as long as you can connect to the internet. OneDrive is compatible with Android, iOS, Mac, and Xbox consoles.

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