OneDrive is losing the ability to upload files from a URL

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Key notes

  • OneDrive users will no longer be able to upload a file from a URL starting March 29, 2024
  • Microsoft announced the change in a blog post and said it had a “high maintenance cost”
  • The feature has been around since 2021 in preview

Microsoft is removing what might have been a lesser-used preview feature of OneDrive. The company mentioned it’ll be dropping OneDrive’s ability to upload files from a URL. The performance and reliability of OneDrive were cited in the decision, and the change is going to take effect on March 29, 2024.

First introduced in 2021, the ability to upload files from a URL was designed for a specific audience only. It was for folks who wanted to save a file from the web to OneDrive without downloading or saving it first. Under the hood, the feature depended on OneDrive downloading the files directly from a remote server. The feature was only available for consumers and never made its way to the business or enterprise versions of the service. Microsoft also said the feature has a “high maintenance cost”, which was a factor in removing it.

“It does not align with our vision for OneDrive as a cloud storage service that syncs your files across devices,” noted Microsoft’s Patrick Rodgers, who is currently a Principal Product Manager.

Come March 29, 2024, OneDrive won’t show any other warnings about this feature going away, so be sure to keep this in mind. If you’re worried that this might impact any saved files in your OneDrive, don’t take no alarm. Existing files that you might have uploaded from a URL will still stay intact. Microsoft suggests app developers who were using this feature to consider uploads of small files or uploaded sessions APIs.

If you missed it, Microsoft is now more committed to the newly designed OneDrive on the Web experience. It first rolled out in January and better lines up OneDrive with the design principles of Windows 11 and other Windows apps. There are changes to help reduce the overall clutter, as well as a cleaner and more efficient way to add files to your OneDrive.

More about the topics: microsoft, Microsoft 365, onedrive, windows