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How to Hide or Disable SkyDrive / OneDrive in Windows 8.1

SkyDrive (soon to be rebranded as OneDrive) is deeply integrated into Windows 8.1 and is the default location to save photos, documents, and more. But not every Windows user might not want to use SkyDrive to save their files, especially if they’ve been happy with other cloud services like Dropbox or Google Drive. Or maybe you don’t like to save your data in the cloud at all and prefer an external drive, NAS, or Home Server. If you find SkyDrive to be too annoying while using Windows 8.1 here’s how to disable it.

Ditch SkyDrive in Windows 8.1

To get rid of it completely across the entire system, you can use Group Policy to disable it.

Note: Local Group Policy is only available in the Pro version of Windows 8.1

On your keyboard hit Windows Key + R to open the Run dialog and type: gpedit.msc and hit Enter to open Local Group Policy Editor.


Next navigate to Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\SkyDrive. In the right panel, double click Prevent the usage of SkyDrive for File Storage.


Update: As you probably know, SkyDrive is officially being renamed to OneDrive. So if you’re reading this aFter the change, instead of looking for SkyDrive, Locate OneDrive — it’s in the same section.


In the next screen select Enabled and click OK to save the setting and close out of Group Policy.


After that you should see SkyDrive is gone from Explorer. If it’s still there, reboot you machine and it should be gone.

Skydrive not listed

And that it’s disabled in the modern interface. The tile is still there – but it’s easy to unpin it – but there won’t be any access to the drive.

Modern Blocked

You won’t be able to access any of the options either.


If you still want to see what’s in the SkyDrive folder, you can right click an empty area in the left pane of Explorer and check Show All Folders.

show all folder

This process doesn’t completely uninstall SkyDrive from the operating system, but it does make it less accessible and disabled for use in the modern side of things.

Maybe you don’t want to completely remove SkyDrive from the equation, so here’s a few articles that explain tweaking different aspects of SkyDrive in Windows:

Personally, I love SkyDrive and am happy with the way Microsoft has been integrating it in with Office 2013 and 365 and other mobile platforms like Android and iOS. But if you aren’t, you can tone it down and use Dropbox or other solution.

6 Responses to How to Hide or Disable SkyDrive / OneDrive in Windows 8.1

  1. Zhou Kai February 13, 2014 at 6:01 pm #

    Great, it worked. Thank you~

  2. Rick February 13, 2014 at 6:08 pm #

    So how do you do it if you don’t have the Pro version of Windows 8.1? I have Windows 8 64-bit, which is now version 8.1. I’ve gone into my PC settings and turned off the “save documents to SkyDrive by default” switch but it keeps reverting back to the ‘On’ position by itself. How can I prevent that from happening?

  3. Romano February 16, 2014 at 5:44 pm #

    Thank you! very clear and precise, it worked very well, I really don’t like microsoft trying to put skydrive / onedrive down my throat

  4. shujidan April 13, 2014 at 9:01 am #

    This doesn’t apply to me, I have OEM single language edition and there isn’t a gpedit file.

  5. Pete April 15, 2014 at 6:00 pm #

    thanks… just what I needed…. so imposing… it really p****s me off..

    thanks again.

  6. Chrissy April 17, 2014 at 5:32 pm #

    Awesome. Works even now that SkyDrive is called OneDrive. I had avoided the update that put OneDrive in the taskbar automatically, but as of this week you need to install that update (in a cumulative update) in order for subsequent updates to take effect, so this was really needed.

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