How to stop Office 365 automatically saving files to OneDrive

Microsoft Office 365 has a feature called AutoSave, which is a function for Microsoft 365 members in Excel, Word, and PowerPoint that saves your content automatically every few seconds while you work. When a file is stored on OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, or SharePoint Online, AutoSave is enabled by default in Microsoft 365. When you open a file for the first time and make changes, AutoSave saves those modifications and creates a new version of the file in the version history. After that even though AutoSave is regularly saving your changes to the file, new versions are only added to the version history periodically (about every 10 minutes) for the remainder of your editing session. However, some users may not want to autosave their files to OneDrive. Follow the steps below to see how you can disable this feature.

Step by step process – How to stop Office 365 automatically saving files to OneDrive?

  1. First, Open any Office 365 program (e.g. Powerpoint or Word), that you are working on.
  2. Then click on “File”.
  3. On the bar on the left, click on “Options”.
  4. In the new panel, select “Save”, located on the left.
  5. Uncheck the box “Autosave OneDrive and SharePoint Online files by default”
  6. Finally, close everything.

Autosave will be disabled by default in future papers. You’ll need to disable Autosave in any Office 365 product where you don’t want autosaving. This is primarily due to the fact that files in Office 365 function as an independent unit, with their own custom settings and features not regulated by the Main Office 365 account. 

With this in mind, Microsoft has implemented a new feature, which allows users to effectively toggle the autosave setting. You just have to slide the on or off switch to either enable or disable the autosave function. This will generically prevent the Autosave from occurring however specifically for OneDrive you can use the step-by-step method above to ensure that files are not auto-saved to OneDrive. And with the checkbox disabled you will no longer autosave the file to OneDrive.

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You can’t see the auto save feature

If you have the newest versions of Excel, Word, and PowerPoint for Windows installed and are a Microsoft 365 member, AutoSave displays in the upper-left corner of the title bar. If you have a business or school account, your administrator may be able to limit the version of Office you may install, and it may not be the most recent version.

If you are not a subscriber to the Microsoft Auto Recover program, there is no issue regarding this. Auto Recover is still available for all users. In the event of a crash, Auto Recover can assist in the recovery of files. A version of the file with your most recent modifications shows in a Document Recovery pane when you reopen the file after a crash.

Turn off the autosave feature in Office 365 programs

You can disable AutoSave if you don’t want to save your changes on a regular basis or if you don’t want others to see your changes. Then, after you’re finished, click Save (or press CTRL+S) to save your changes and make them visible to anybody else working on the project. (Alternatively, to store and share your changes, set the AutoSave switch back on.)

For files stored in the Microsoft Cloud, the default setting for AutoSave is Always On. If you toggle AutoSave Off for a specific file, however, the software will remember and keep it turned off every time you reopen that file. If you turn it back on for a specific file, it will remember to keep it on.

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The new OneDrive auto sync feature – collaborated with Office 365

For OneDrive, Microsoft is releasing a new folder protection function. Folder protection will automatically sync your documents, photos, and desktop folders to OneDrive, ensuring that all of a PC’s critical folders are backed up to Microsoft’s cloud service. If you have several Windows 10 PCs, OneDrive will keep all of your folders in sync automatically, which is especially handy if you frequently dump critical documents onto your desktop.

On Windows 10, you may enable folder protection by going to OneDrive settings, then to the AutoSave tab, then to the update folders button under safeguard your critical folders. The procedure will automatically upload and sync your documents, photos, and Desktop folders to OneDrive.

During Windows 10 installation, you should have seen a message that said “Back up your data with OneDrive” and explained the advantages of storing your files to OneDrive. (The screen used to say, “Protect your data with OneDrive” before July 2019.) If you chose Next, OneDrive will become your default save place.

All of your files are available on your PC, whether you save by default to your computer or to OneDrive. The built-in OneDrive program in Windows 10 synchronizes your files between OneDrive and your PC, ensuring that they’re safe, secure, and accessible from any device. You may utilize Files On-Demand to clear up space on your device or to ensure that files or folders are always accessible, even while you’re offline.

If you cease safeguarding a folder, it may seem empty on your computer. Because the Desktop, Documents, and Pictures folders reside under both This PC and OneDrive, it’s simple to get them mixed up. Existing files stay in OneDrive when you cease safeguarding a folder, while new ones save to your PC.

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In depth – Step by step process – How to stop Office 365 automatically saving files to OneDrive?

Step by step breakdown:

  • First, Open any Office 365 program (e.g. Powerpoint or Word), that you are working on.
  • Then click on “File”.
  • On the bar on the left, click on “Options”.
  • In the new panel, select “Save”, located on the left.
  • Uncheck the box “Autosave files stored in the Cloud by default in [application].”
  • Finally, close everything.

That’s it for this Blog thank you for taking time out to read our content, please feel free to email our team about how it went if you followed the steps or if you need more help with the questions we answered in this Blog.

Saajid Gangat

Saajid Gangat has been a researcher and content writer at Business Tech Planet since 2021. Saajid is a tech-savvy writer with expertise in web and graphic design and has extensive knowledge of Microsoft 365, Adobe, Shopify, WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, and more! You can connect with Saajid on Linkedin.

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