How to Delete Notebooks in OneNote

Keep your OneNote application tidy and organized

Microsoft OneNote is a great tool for organizing both personal and professional information, kind of like a digital version of a multi-subject binder. But what happens when you no longer need a OneNote notebook? While you can’t delete files from the OneNote desktop app, because OneNote stores notebook files directly to OneDrive, you have two ways to delete a notebook.

Instructions in this article apply to OneNote 2016, and OneNote for Windows 10 and Microsoft 365.

Find Your Microsoft, Work, or School Account

Because you can use the OneNote desktop app with multiple accounts, you’ll need to know which account created which notebook. If you’re unsure which account you use with OneNote, sign in at OneNote Online with each account until you see the notebook you want to delete.

To find the notebook you want to delete:

  1. Open a web browser.

  2. Go to Office.com.

  3. Select Sign in.

    The Sign In button
  4. Sign in with your Microsoft, work, or school account username and password.

    Microsoft Office login website.
  5. Go to the apps list and select OneNote.

    OneNote in the Apps section of Office Online
  6. Look for the notebook in the My Notebooks list.

    The list of available OneNote notebooks
  7. If you see the notebook you want to delete, delete the notebook in either OneNote Online or OneDrive.

  8. If you don't see the notebook, sign out, and then sign in with one of your other accounts.

How to Delete Notebooks in OneNote Online

If you’re familiar with OneNote Online, use the web app to delete the notebook file.

Deleted notebooks are moved to the Recycle bin and may be recovered. Back up notebooks and other files before removing them from your online storage service.

To use OneNote Online to delete a notebook:

  1. Open a web browser and sign in at Office.com.

    Microsoft Office website sign in.
  2. Go to the apps list and select OneNote.

    OneNote in the apps list
  3. On the right side of the page, select Manage and Delete.

    The Manage and Delete command
  4. Select the Documents folder.

    The Documents folder
  5. Hover over the notebook that you want to delete and select the check box.

    The checkbox for a document in OneNote
  6. Select Delete.

    The Delete command
  7. If you accidentally deleted a notebook, select Undo.

    The Undo button
  8. Another way to restore a notebook you've accidentally deleted is to go to the Recycle bin, select the notebook, and then select Restore.

    The Restore command

How to Delete a Notebook You've Synced to Your Computer

When you sync OneDrive to your computer, you’ll find shortcuts to your notebooks in Windows File Explorer. To view these shortcuts, open File Explorer, go to the OneDrive folder, and then open the Documents folder. Alternatively, select the OneDrive icon in your System Tray and select Open Folder.

Opening OneDrive from the System Tray.

Double-click a shortcut to open the notebook in OneNote Online.

You can't delete these OneNote shortcuts. To remove OneNote notebooks, go to OneDrive.com and delete the notebooks from your cloud storage space.

How to Remove a Notebook From the OneNote List

To prevent the OneNote desktop app from syncing a deleted notebook, close the item. If you don't close the notebook, a syncing error will occur.

Closing a notebook removes it from the list in OneNote.

  1. Open the OneNote desktop app.

  2. Select Show Notebook List.

  3. Right-click the notebook you want to remove from the list.

    Right-clicking on a notebook.
  4. Select Close This Notebook.

    You can also remove existing notebooks from the list. Closing a notebook does not delete it.

    The Close This Notebook command
  5. If you don’t see the notebook in the list, select More Notebooks.