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OneDrive Share Files and Folders

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Use Microsoft OneDrive as a cloud backup, and share files, photos, and entire folders with others.

Your cloud storage in OneDrive is private until you decide to share with others. You can also see who a OneDrive file is shared with or stop sharing at any time.

When you decide to create a sharing link you can use either the OneDrive Web or OneDrive Client (Windows) to initiate this process. Then Configure Link Settings before Copy Link or Email Link.

  1. Go to the OneDrive website and sign in with your Microsoft account or your work or school account.

  2. Pick the file or folder you want to share by selecting the circle in the upper corner of the item.

  3. Select Share at the top of the page.
    Screenshot of selecting a file and clicking the Share command

  4. Continue to Configure Link Settings.

  1. Navigate to your OneDrive Client folder.

  2. Pick the file or folder you want. Right Click the file or folder.

  3. Select Share from the dropdown list.

    file, onedrive, share options - 3CX

  4. Continue to Configure Link Settings.

  1. Select the People you specify can edit to customize the link settings. See Additional Link Setting Details for a detailed setting breakdown.
    send link in file explorer

  2. Set the options you want on your link. See Additional Link Setting Details for a detailed setting breakdown. Select Apply when you’re done.
    Link Settings options for sharing a file in OneDrive

  3. Continue to Copy Link or Email Link.

  1. Once you’re back at the main Share box, select Copy Link to copy the link to your clipboard.
    Copy Link confirmation when sharing files via link in OneDrive

    • Note: “” is the shortened URL for OneDrive. Shortened URLs are useful for sharing via Twitter.
  2. Paste the link in an email message or wherever else you’re sharing the link.

  1. Once you’re back at the main Share box. If not already filled, provide the emails of the recipients of the link.

  2. If you would like to provide a message fill in the Message box.

  3. Select Send to send the link to the specified recipients.

    send link to anyone


The following provides a detailed look at the available settings a OneDrive Sharing Link has.
link setting

  • Link Type (Who would you like this link to work for?)

    • Anyone gives access to anyone who receives this link, whether they receive it directly from you or forwarded from someone else. This may include people outside of your organization.

    • People in  gives anyone in your organization who has the link access to the file, whether they receive it directly from you or forwarded from someone else.

    • People with existing access can be used by people who already have access to the document or folder. It does not change the permissions on the item. Use this if you just want to send a link to somebody who already has access. 

    • Specific people gives access only to the people you specify, although other people may already have access. If people forward the sharing invitation, only people who already have access to the item will be able to use the link. Note that in order to track access and ensure security, you can only share with someone who is in your organization or has a Microsoft Account.

  • Allow Editing

    • By default, Allow editing is turned on. Unchecking this box means that people can view, copy or download your items without signing in. They can also forward the link to other people. However, they cannot make change to the version on your OneDrive.

  • Set Expiration Date

    • The link will only work until the date you set. After that, the link will be invalid, and you will need to create a new link for users requiring access to your file or folder.

  • Set Password

    • When a user clicks the link, they will be prompted to enter a password before they can access the file. You’ll need to provide this password separately to users.

  • Block download

    • Disables the ability to save a local copy.

Note1: For Word files, you can also select Open in review mode only to limit people to leaving comments and making suggestions in the file. Note that if someone already has editing permissions for the item, selecting Open in review mode only will not prevent them from making edits. For them, document will open in edit mode.

  • When you enable Open in review mode only for a shared document, recipients who open the document in the Word desktop app will be redirected to Word on the web to make tracked edits or leave comments.

Note2: If a sharing option has been greyed out, your organization’s admins may have restricted them. For example, they may choose to disable the Anyone option to prevent usable links being forwarded to others.

Note3: Not all settings are available for the different Link Types.

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