written by
Jag Kakarlapudi

How to deal with OneDrive for Business storage limitations?

Information Management System 3 min read , August 27, 2021

This morning we woke up to a major Microsoft 365 service incident affecting OneDrive for Business. As per the Microsoft 365 service health log (https://status.office.com), here are more details related to this major incident.

Title: Users' OneDrive for Business storage limits are lower than expected

User Impact: Users' OneDrive for Business storage limits are lower than expected.

For any quota which exceeds the 1TB storage quota, users may only be able to see their content in read-only mode. Whilst in read-only mode, users can access their content in OneDrive for Business, but are unable to make changes.

Preliminary root cause: A misconfiguration that resulted in our internal systems not recognizing user licenses and reverting the storage quota limit to the default settings of 1TB.

Resolution Status: The deployment has completed successfully. Additionally, we’ve identified that the fix will take approximately 24 hours (Estimated time to resolution: Saturday, August 28, 2021, 8:00 AM Melbourne Australia) to take full effect. We’ll continue to closely monitor the environment during this timeframe to ensure the service remains in a healthy state, and that the fix progresses as intended.

Scope of impact: This issue affects a large subset of users worldwide.

Due to this incident, we have noticed that some OneDrive for Business users have deleted their old content to be within the 1 TB limitation and regain full access.

At Modern Work Group, we do not recommend deleting your content from OneDrive for Business due this incident or when your data is set to read-only state.

Let’s look at how to manage your content in OneDrive for Business if you reach the storage limitations.

What the storage limitation for content in OneDrive for Business?

According to the official OneDrive service description page, for most (Microsoft 365) subscription plans, the default storage space for each user's OneDrive for Business is 1 TB. Depending on the subscription plan and the number of licensed users, you can increase this storage up to 5 TB. If your organization has a qualifying Microsoft 365 subscription and five (5) or more users, you can change the storage space to more than 5 TB.

Key point to note here is the though the default storage limit is 1 TB; you can change the threshold and store content up to 5 TB. So, when you reach 1 TB storage limit, the service will continue to work as expected without any degradation.

How to increase users OneDrive for Business storage limit to more than 1 TB?

Checkout this official Microsoft documentation on how to increase users OneDrive for business storage.

The Office 365 admin can increase the OneDrive for Business storage limit for all new and existing users with a license to 5 TB from the SharePoint service admin center.

OneDrive for Business Storage Limit setting

Can I store more than 5 TB of data in my OneDrive for Business?

Yes, your Office 365 admin can raise a support ticket with Microsoft to increase your OneDrive for Business storage limit to 25 TB. If you reach more than 90% of the 25 TB of storage limit, your Office 365 admin can raise another support ticket with Microsoft to enable additional 25 TB SharePoint Team sites for the user to support unlimited OneDrive for Business storage.

Source: Cloud Storage Pricing and Plans – Microsoft OneDrive

Can I restore my deleted content from OneDrive for Business?

Yes, by default you can still restore your deleted content from OneDrive for Business within 93 days from the time of deletion. Checkout the below the Microsoft support article on how to restore your files from OneDrive for Business Recycle Bin.

At Modern Work Group, we do not recommend encouraging your users to store more than 5 TB of data in their OneDrive for Business due to content governance best practices. In case where a user requires large content repository, we recommend provisioning a SharePoint site with automatic storage limitation setting turned on across your tenant.

SharePoint site storage limit setting

If you need assistance with setting up Microsoft 365 (Teams, SharePoint Online & OneDrive for Business) information management and governance best practices to support document storage in your organisation, please book in your free Microsoft 365 consultation service from Modern Work Group today.

OneDrive for Business SharePoint Online