back to article Microsoft ups OneDrive storage, slashes prices to match Google Drive

The race to the bottom in the cloud storage market continues, with Microsoft lobbing lots more free storage at its consumer customers and slashing prices on the paid tiers of its OneDrive online storage locker by more than 70 per cent. "The landscape is changing to the point that we believe it's no longer enough to provide …


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  1. Glostermeteor

    OneDrive is close to useless due to their 2gb file limit

    Large amounts of cloud storage with OneDrive is nearly useless due to their 2gb limit on individual files. Only Drop box allows you to use your cloud allowance however you want.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: OneDrive is close to useless due to their 2gb file limit

      And Dropbox make you pay for the privilege. Those with this requirement are going to be edge-cases and this is a mainstream, consumer cloud storage solution.

      1. big_D Silver badge

        Re: OneDrive is close to useless due to their 2gb file limit

        I must say, apart from a couple of VMs, I don't have any files over about 100MB on my system that would need to go into cloud storage - and for the VMs, they are on Carbonite anyway, so I can get them back anywhere I need.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: OneDrive is close to useless due to their 2gb file limit

      That doesn't affect me, but the upload/download rate of 10KB/s is a deal breaker. And that, despite it being baked into Windows 8.1.

      And so after a couple of weeks, I gave up and just freed up a bit more space in my Dropbox on the basis that actually works at transfer rates better than a mid 90s dial up modem.

  2. Rick Leeming

    2Gb file?

    How many legally obtained files do you have that are over 2Gb?

    1. John H Woods Silver badge

      Re: 2Gb file?

      >>How many legally obtained files do you have that are over 2Gb?

      A TrueCrypt container? A zip archive? Home video? There's dozens of possibilities.

    2. Anonymous Coward

      Re: 2Gb file?

      "How many legally obtained files do you have that are over 2Gb?"

      I realise this may come as a enormous shock to you, but some people do actually produce data, instead of just consuming it.

      1. Rick Leeming

        Re: 2Gb file?

        If you're regularly needing to put over a 2Gb file in the cloud then This Product Is Not For You. It's not a business service product, MS would be foolish to cut in to their potential Sharepoint customers.

        If you're using Onedrive in a professional environment to share out product to customers and staff, then your IT team isn't advising you well.

        You wouldn't use a motorbike to pull a caravan, Similarly you don't use domestic products in an important business function.

        1. busycoder99

          Re: 2Gb file?

          So everyone who wants to backup an archive over 2GB has to get sharepain now?

          1. Rick Leeming

            Re: 2Gb file?

            No, I'm pointing out that from a marketing point of view MS would be foolish to bite in to their commercial business.

            If you need a store over 2Gb then use another product. Nobody is pointing a gun at your head and saying "Use Onedrive or Die".

            1. dan1980

              Re: 2Gb file?

              @Rick Leeming

              Well, OneDrive is here discussed as part of the Office 365 suite, which is AIMED at business so that argument doesn't really make sense.

              Office 365 is touted by MS for businesses of all sizes, but looking just at a small business migrating away from, say, SBS, they will be looking to get rid of their server and host their files inside Office 365, along with their e-mails.

              The inability to backup PSTs to MS's solution (OneDrive) means that such files must be either backed-up locally* or else not at all.

              Of course, it's your choice what to use but the point people above are making is that NOT having the ability to upload >2GB files makes this particular choice less compelling and the rectification of that would be more beneficial than the new 1TB limit. Or, at least the increase to 1TB is less useful without it.

              * - For the record, I think this should be done anyway, but understand that a big driver of the adoption of 'cloud' services, is the desire be free of all their IT infrastructure and processes like managing a server and backups.

              1. Rick Leeming

                Re: 2Gb file?

                I think in 20+ years I've seen maybe 1 office file (Other than PST files) over 2Gb. Plus PST files are an awful way to store data anyway. ScanPST has been the bane of my life in the past, and similarly users who think that the auto-archive features of exchange aren't reliable (despite in one case having a backup system for the exchange server that was multi-millions in cost).

                Skydrive/Onedrive is a poor, slow, crappy system. It is barely adequate for what they say it does, to stretch it to using files over 2Gb would just be asking for even more pain.

                These days small businesses should really be looking at Hosted services, or just flipping over to Google Apps (I flipped to the google apps 50 user when it was still free due to functionality I needed at the time).

                The job I do now I see 20Gb PST files, with multiple mailboxes all dumping their crap, and I rarely see anything for home users that actually needs anything more than a basic IMAP account. I similarly see small business users who are trying to run it on 2nd rate services where they would be _far_ more flexible, and covered to just pay a little cash on google apps (or similar) than paying me a couple of hundred quid every few months to recover what data I can.

                I recently pointed a customer at Hosted Services, because their needs were better served there than keep paying me for work that that while profitable, was annoying me and better done elsewhere.

                I use Skydrive myself to transfer docs between my machines, and I'm using WP8/8.1 as well as Android, and even occasionally a Macbook (horrible thing). I don't consider it even a remotely suitable backup solution, it's a useful file dump for the occasional thing that I may want later. It isn't even a proper backup solution, it's just a sync folder really.

                1. dan1980

                  Re: 2Gb file?


                  "How many legally obtained files do you have that are over 2Gb?"

                  Evidently, you see these yourself in the form of PST files. That you don't think PSTs are a good idea is irrelevant. So it your belief that OneDrive is a poor backup method. For what it's worth, I agree on both counts. But that's not the point.

                  Whatever the case, Onedrive is an online storage option and people:

                  a.) have files over 2GB and,

                  b.) want to store them 'in the cloud'

                  OneDrive does not cater for those people and thus the increase in storage space to 1TB per-user is great but largely a publicity stunt. That's fine, it just doesn't address the problem of uploading large files, which is what people above were complaining about.

              2. TheVogon

                Re: 2Gb file?

                "The inability to backup PSTs to MS's solution (OneDrive) means that such files must be either backed-up locally* or else not at all."

                OneDrive isn't meant for backups. This is the Microsoft online backup option:


                First 5 GB / Month - Free

                Greater than 5 GB / Month - £0.18 per GB per month

              3. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: 2Gb file?

                "adoption of 'cloud' services, is the desire be free of all their IT infrastructure and processes like managing a server and backups."

                going to a client site tomorrow for exactly that conversation. Was thinking of asking them to demonstrate how they can do absolutely everything they need using "cloud" services, including some business-critical stuff, then unplugging ('cutting') their Internet connection to see what they do. Is that cruel / any better suggestions out there?

                a/c because, well, it's kinda obvious ..

                1. Hellcat

                  Re: 2Gb file?

                  Onedrive isn't a cloud backup service. It's meant to be a synchronised location for storing live files. If you need to backup huge zip archives, or VMs then look at any of the cloud backup services, or (crazy idea here) keep it local - because who wants to be waiting for 2GB or more to download when something local has gone horribly wrong...

            2. Glostermeteor

              Re: 2Gb file?

              No, but the tablet device makers (including Microsoft and Apple) are putting guns to peoples heads. The only reason they are getting away with only having 32-64GB of storage on their tablet devices is because they are also trying to push cloud and say you don't need local storage. My point is the cloud is useless unless you can actually put the files you need in the cloud. I now have movies that are way in excess of 2GB. I also, after the Snowden revelations and Heartbleed SSL bug don't put anything of value into the cloud unless it is in a Truecrypt or Bitlocker container, and those things can get very big. They either need to make the cloud useful, or they need to produce devices that have enough local internal storage. Or I will just stick with my PC and boycott both.

    3. dan1980

      Re: 2Gb file?

      Virtual disks (VMDKs/VHDs), BKFs or other backup formats, ISOs*. Some survey data can be very large as well. PSTs from Outlook (or archived mailboxes from an Exchange-Office365 migration), database files, RAW files from security-camera DVRs - even compressed they can get pretty large depending on the FPS and the split settings.

      The point is that there are numerous types of data that can exceed 2GB and thus be a PITA to backup or transfer via a cloud service.

      To answer the question directly, though - 'how many' - it only really takes ONE file to make it annoying. If you are a small business looking to 'move to the cloud', you are usually doing so because you don't want to bother with your own in-house server and manage backups, etc... Having files you can't backup to the cloud means you have to make other arrangements, at which point you have split storage - some locally and some online.

      * - I have plenty of legally-obtained ISOs (MSDN, etc...) that have since disappeared from the normal download channels and are now only available as physical DVDs via mail - and even then only grudgingly.

    4. Deltics

      Re: 2Gb file?

      I imagine you meant 2GB, not 2Gb (256MB). Even so, I imagine many people have many files larger than 2GB, perfectly legally obtained.

      You have made the cardinal error of extrapolating a general case from a sample data set comprising of one, unrepresentative case. i.e. yourself.

      1. Rick Leeming

        Re: 2Gb file?

        Or maybe, just maybe the roughly 200 different people a month I deal with relating to their personal needs...

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 2Gb file?

      There are people in our company who store documents and pictures in access databases that exceed 4GB, are not backed up and needed to be transferred across the entire network if other people wasn't to open it.

      I don't think I need to add this state of affairs was neither supported nor recommended by the IT department.

      Anon - obv.

  3. jnffarrell1

    Tbit of free cloud storage. So what?

    Google free users 1M-up,5M-down could use a Tbit of cloud storage. 1Mbps upload can fill a Tbit in 12 days and download a 3 day Tbit-binge of HDTV viewing by the end of a weekend.

    1. TheVogon

      Re: Tbit of free cloud storage. So what?

      So Google takes a while to scan your data for advert relevant content then...

  4. Stu 18


    Just let my dropbox subscription lapse because I hate companies that 'auto bill' my credit card - yeah I see they all do. I still call it theft though, I'd much prefer a reminder, then I'll make the payment, it is my card and my money after all, I don't see the local shop saying 'we'll hold the card, please give us the pin so we can bill it when necessary'.

    And One drive, only to cloud by default with just links stored locally, I'm pretty angry about that too and it is really slow saving files - even with 10Mb/s upload on fibre (I live in regional nz, we have fibre at home.)

    1. Mark Wilson

      Re: humph

      Hubic doesn't. Much cheaper to (10TB for €9.99).

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      And One drive, only to cloud by default with just links stored locally

      Are we talking about the same OneDrive? All *files* are replicated, except for OneNote docs in a Mac system, which (AFAIK) are stored as links.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    They'll be relying on the simple fact that the vast majority of punters won't need anything close to 1TB. Just another boring pissing contest in the tech business. Nothing to see here. Move on.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Microsoft silently tried to shove OneDrive on my PC

    when I installed Office 2013. Luckily in Windows 7 you can still uninstall rogue (or potentially unwanted programs) applications at a click of the mouse. Something tells me in the future versions of Windows we will no longer have this luxury.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Microsoft silently tried to shove OneDrive on my PC

      Presumably because the default storage option for Office 2013 is cloud based. What crystal ball tells you that we won't be able to unistall applications in the future? I can't see that Windows will ever go in the direction of Android and put non removable crapware on your system.

    2. Lamont Cranston

      Re: Microsoft silently tried to shove OneDrive on my PC

      Surely only a matter of time before OneDrive becomes the new IE, and the EU slap them down for anti-competitive behaviour?

    3. Wade Burchette Silver badge

      Re: Microsoft silently tried to shove OneDrive on my PC

      "Something tells me in the future versions of Windows we will no longer have this luxury."

      Microsoft calls this future Windows 8.1.

  7. Deltics

    OneDrive is DOA unless/until they deliver "co-ownership" on Shared Folders

    I currently have a complaint filed with the Commerce Commission here in NZ due to the way that Microsoft advertise the ability to access your OneDrive storage anywhere, anytime through local, offline access, and simultaneously advertise the ability to share OneDrive files with people, without at any point highlighting the fact that the people you share with can't do both at the same time, making the file sharing features fundamentally useless.

    Note: This applies to the non-business OneDrive accounts - As I understand it, business users get to use SharePoint based file sharing.

    And all while drawing direct comparison with GoogleDrive and DropBox et al, who's file sharing capabilities operate in a fundamentally different (i.e. usable) fashion, for ALL users, even those paying nothing, never mind business users.

    1TB of OneDrive storage is useless unless I can usefully share some of the (non-Office document) files in that storage with other users as part of my Office 365 subscription.

  8. plrndl

    Deja Vu

    This is a mistake the phone companies made when they offered unlimited data contracts, at a time when "no-one" was using data on their phones.

    It won't be long before someone invents a use for all this "free" storage, and MS will have to start charging customers for this, after they've become committed to the data use.

  9. ForthIsNotDead

    Watch the lawsuites fly...

    ...when Microsoft properly integrate their cloud drives into the Windows OS.

    Seriously, mapping your own personal cloud storage to a drive letter would be feckin' ace. And Google, Amazon and chums won't like it at all if that functionality is built in as the OS level.

    Go Microsoft! Take their lunch!

    1. Babbit55

      Re: Watch the lawsuites fly...

      Windows 8 actually does have your Onedrive as a drive basically, works well too I have a Lumia and when I take a photo it automatically goes to Onedrive, really easy way of doing cloud storage I think! For general usage 2GB of storage is fine, as for sharing I have shared some videos from the Xbox online easily along with some photos with friends.

    2. Hellcat

      Re: Watch the lawsuites fly...

      I'm not sure if I missed the sarcasm in this post because you _can_ map a drive letter to your Onedrive, and Win8 _has_ Onedrive built in.

      If not, then

    3. Robert E A Harvey

      Re: Watch the lawsuites fly...

      >mapping your own personal cloud storage to a drive letter would be feckin' ace

      Drive letters? how quaint. How 1970s.

      1. Lamont Cranston

        Re: Watch the lawsuites fly...

        I've never really understood the animosity toward drive letters. I've had Linux in regular use for a couple of years, now, but the Windows method still seems preferable. Can anyone enlighten me on the benefits? Documentation that I've read described the Linux method as "more robust" but I've yet to notice any benefit (after getting my file storage drive to mount automatically in Mint, I had to correct the links to it under XBMC, which was a less than slick experience).

  10. joed

    not all that excited

    For once I'm not into sharing my data with strangers (this includes NSA;) so the app is disabled across my home systems.

    I can make exception with regard to onedrive for business (supposedly more locked down etc PR) but lack of flexibility really sucks. There's storage limit (and your network has to handle that), there's file size limit (4GB for us - does MS use FAT32 across azure:) and then there's the retarded idea of syncing. I know OD is not meant to be a backup but it is (if limited backup is all customer wanted and already paid for). I specifically wanted to offload junk of my small ssd only to find that my free space kept shrinking. Also if I installed OD on my home system I'd enjoy the "convenience' of sucking all my work data in. Disabling the desktop app leaves you with the browser option that did not work any good (1 file at a time and switching to windows explorer failed due to some trusted sites issue I did not bother to fully investigate).

    I'd hate to be regular business user with actual data and needs for more flexibility that M$ envisioned.

    Also, the subscription is never free (no matter how MS rep sells it) and you'll pay it twice (no free bandwidth for business).

  11. teapot9999

    OSX - nope

    One Drive for Enterprise is still not available for OS X

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: OSX - nope

      Presumably because near zero enterprises use OS-X

  12. Headwesty
    Thumb Down

    Aint no Dropbox replacement

    I've been desperately trying to use the 27Gb I already have but until Microsoft fix 1. The speed (about 10x slower than Dropbox on my network), 2. The lack of true shared folders and 3. the fact that even saving stuff from Office it is slower than with Dropbox (because it insists on saving it directly to the cloud rather than just scheduling an upload) I'll be eeking out my 2Gb of Dropbox (well actually 9.5Gb cos I invites so many people to share folders...).

    Forget offering more space. Fix the basics!

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    There's a worrying number of people here using the word 'backup' in conjunction with OneDrive/Dropbox et al.

  14. roselan

    and as predicted, at IO google announced it will offer unlimited data with it 10$/month subs to docs/drive.

    My guess is that is MS did hear of it and moved first to limit the google announce impact.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    When will this take place? My onedrive is still showing 30gb (UK)

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