We’re incredibly lucky to have millions of passionate OneNote users around the globe, and we love learning how we can help you remember, think, and organize better. In spending time with you, we heard a recurring theme: you want a single version of OneNote on Windows that combines all the benefits of the modern Windows 10 app with the depth and breadth of capabilities in the older OneNote 2016. We took that feedback to heart, and over the last few years we’ve been focused on making OneNote for Windows 10 the best version of OneNote on Windows.


Beginning with the launch of Office 2019 later this year, OneNote for Windows 10 will replace OneNote 2016 as the default OneNote experience for both Office 365 and Office 2019. Why OneNote for Windows 10? The app has improved performance and reliability, and it’s powered by a brand new sync engine (which we’re also bringing to web, Mac, iOS, and Android). You don’t need to worry about being on the latest version since it’s always up-to-date via the Microsoft Store, and it lets us deliver updates faster than ever before. In fact, over the last year and a half we've added more than 100 of your favorite OneNote 2016 features based on your feedback (thank you!), with more improvements on the way including tags and better integration with Office documents.


We’d love for you to start using OneNote for Windows 10 today, however we know some of you might not be ready yet. Maybe you rely on a feature we don’t yet support on Windows 10 (please let us know using the Feedback Hub), or you don’t want to store your notebooks in the cloud. If so, you’re more than welcome to continue using OneNote 2016.


What’s happening to OneNote 2016?

While we’re no longer adding new features to OneNote 2016, it’ll still be there if you need it. OneNote 2016 is optionally available for anyone with Office 365 or Office 2019, but it will no longer be installed by default. If you currently use OneNote 2016, you won’t notice any changes when you update to Office 2019. We’ll continue to offer support, bug fixes, and security updates for OneNote 2016 for the duration of the Office 2016 support lifecycle, which runs through October 2020 for mainstream support and October 2025 for extended support. For more details, please refer to this FAQ.


A preview of what’s to come

We've been listening to your feedback about what you like—and what you don't—and working hard to address it in the product. Your opinions, feature requests, and, yes, complaints have been critical in helping us shape the current experience. Today, we’d like to walk you through some of the work we’ve done to bring your favorite features from OneNote 2016 to OneNote for Windows 10, highlight some of the capabilities that are only available in the Windows 10 app, and give you a sneak peek at a few of the improvements coming this year.

Your favorite features, improved

OneNote for Windows 10 was designed to feel natural with any input method, from mouse and keyboard to pen and touch, and it contains numerous improvements under the hood for better performance, reliability, and battery life. It also has a number of new features not available in OneNote 2016, including ink effects* and dramatically improved ink-to-text (check it out—it’ll even preserve your ink color, size, and highlights!), Researcher*, a notification center, deep integration with Windows 10, and much more. 



For many of you, shifting our focus to the Windows 10 app won’t come as a surprise. Aside from a handful of targeted improvements, we haven’t added any new features to OneNote 2016 in some time. Instead we’ve been focusing on consistency, ensuring that nearly all your favorite features in OneNote 2016 are also available in OneNote for Windows 10. We’re almost there, and in the coming months we’ll be adding even more top-requested features.


Top-requested features coming soon to OneNote for Windows 10

Here's what you can expect later this summer:

  • Insert and search for tags: OneNote 2016’s popular tags feature is coming to OneNote for Windows 10! Soon you’ll be able to insert, create, and search for custom tags, making it easy to mark key information and find it later. Tags you create will now roam with you to across your devices, and OneNote will even show you tags other people have used in a shared notebook so you don’t have to recreate them yourself. The new tags experience was designed based on your feedback, and it will be available later this summer.



  • View and edit files: See live previews of Office files in OneNote, work together on attached documents, and save space in your notebooks with cloud files. You’ll get all the benefits of saving a file on OneDrive with the context and convenience of an attachment or preview on a OneNote page.


Cloud Files.png


  • Additional Class Notebook features: The full slate of Class Notebook features available in the add-on for OneNote 2016 will be available in OneNote for Windows 10 this summer. Best of all, you no longer need to install a separate add-in—it's all built-in!


These are just a few of the improvements coming soon to OneNote for Windows 10. The app is updated every month with new functionality, and we have a lot of cool stuff in the works—including page templates. Stay tuned for more exciting announcements.


An improved sync experience

We've been hard at work making sync faster and more reliable on OneNote for Windows 10, as well as on Mac, iOS, Android, and web. Since a picture is worth a thousand words, here's a look at the new sync engine in action:



You can try the first set of improvements today by opening a OneDrive notebook in OneNote for Windows 10, Mac, iOS, or Android. These improvements will be rolled out to OneNote Online in the coming months, as well as notebooks on OneDrive for Business and SharePoint.


Improving the user experience

Last year, we unveiled a new look and feel for OneNote on Windows 10, Mac, iOS, Android, and OneNote Online that aligned the disparate designs into a single, unified interface. In addition to bringing consistency to our apps, the new user experience scales much better for large notebooks and significantly improves accessibility for those who rely on assistive technologies. To learn more about the new design, check out our help article.



This is just a quick look at OneNote for Windows 10, but we’re not done yet. We'll continue listening to your feedback and incorporating it into our future plans, so leave us a comment below or add your feature request using the Feedback Hub. You can also join the Office Insider program for early access to the latest updates. And before we sign off, we want to say a huge thank you for your support. We really hope you love the new OneNote for Windows!


—OneNote Team


*Requires Office 365 subscription


Regular Visitor

@Kelly Jones - fyi, the fix you suggested no longer works. In the most recent update, Microsoft removed "Navigation Pane" from the View menu. Most likely they saw what you suggested to me and decided to make sure people wouldn't have that option. OK, that probably didn't happen, but removing it was thoughtless and jerk-like of them. Clearly they've given up on desktop PC users and are focused on tablets and phones. Again, their business model seems pretty jerk-like. 

Occasional Visitor

I just started using OneNote from Evernote and have had to Google already SEVERAL issues. The importing feature for the OneNote app in Windows doesn't work.  We have to open EACH file on OneDrive first, then go back to OneNote app for Windows and add the notebooks.  That is ridiculous.


Also, the notebooks on OneDrive should ALL show up in the OneNote app for Windows.  You shoudn't have to keep clicking "Add another notebook."  That is a dumb feature.  Either all my notebooks show up or I don't want to use this.


Super glitchy syncing so far.  It looks like the app on my ios phone works WAY better than the Windows app on my Surface Book 2, but unfortunately I will be using my Surface Book 2 way more often on OneNote than my phone.  I have never used OneNote 2016 so I have no idea what I'm missing, but I can tell from NUMEROUS problems and posts online that the Windows app is NOWHERE NEAR the desktop version and that's just ridiculous for MS not to have been able to exactly duplicate it.  Evernote is a terrible company now but there format is AWESOME, why can't you just literally study the layout of that and do that?  Also, the side tab thing is really bad.  I've seen pictures of the top tabs from OneNote 2016 and it looks way better.  Evernote's side tabs were awesome for me, but they are presented much better.  Please just duplicate that and you will have a ton of happy users!

Frequent Contributor

Hi @jwerwin80 - I still have the navigation panes option:




My OneNote was updated a couple of weeks ago to this version: 16001.11601.20066.0

Occasional Visitor

I try to take the sunny view. Using OneNote for Windows 10 does not cause actual pain, so I take that as a positive. It is getting more capable, gradually. I'm okay with the UI. Not as polished and professional as the Office 2016 version, but okay, fine. Fine. Whatever.


I also have some sympathy for the Windows developers. The vitriol that spills forth on user boards! It's no wonder they keep their distance. I half suspect that some of the stuff posted here gets used at office parties, if only to help them use laughter to cope.


Still, there is an interesting business-guru book to be written about a global tech company prying loose a little-known, less-promoted tool from the hands of a devoted band of power users. Chapter 1 might be: why the company created such a capable, elegant and powerful tool and kept it a secret, then gave it away for free. Chapter 2 might be: Why the company didn't just wrap a new skin on all the underlying functionality and call it good. Chapter 3: Why, you naive simpleton, you have no idea how impossible your selfish wish is to accommodate on a mobile platform. Let us lecture to you why you will love this new version of a multi-functional organizational tool that you will enjoy managing with your greasy, fat thumbs on a 4.5-inch screen, and which will accomplish 1/5 of the tasks the previous version accomplished.


I was an Evernote user before I discovered the unpromoted, hidden-under-the-hood OneNote. OneNote has become the Central Administration Desk of all my work. I have delighted in each new thing I discovered it could do.


Good times, good times.


I'm off to install Joplin. It will run on my Linux machine, too.

Senior Member

An improved sync experience - the syncing was working great before Version 16001.11601.20066.0.  Since it seems with the upgrade the priority has been given to the program and user entry has taken the back-seat.  As with ALL programs (including Outlook Calendar which is the worst) the priority should ALWAYS be given to the user to continue working and let the program work in the background.  We should NEVER need to wait for the program!!!  Please forget all the pretty icon upgrades and focus on the things that are important for the users or simply forget upgrades - programs seem to have more problems as upgrades are introduced.


I'd be very interested in hearing about your experiences with the Joplin experiment @JThomas100 


Bit late to the game but have had to shuffle between W10 and 2016 OneNote. I have no objection to going app but the killer for me and many thousands of others based on comments and feedback I have seen is that you cannot lock / turn off containers in W10 OneNote. So many people hate them and just want the option to have a simple word processing use case but MS consistently and it seems bloody mindedly ignore this one simple request. It is not a massive UI change to roll out. You are losing thousands of users over this.

Senior Member

I may agree with you but do not understand "cannot lock / turn off containers"???  SMrtin can you explain?


Hi Robert

If you go File > Options on desktop OneNote you can flip a checkbox to turn containers off thus removing that annoying "oh bugger I just dragged the container and cant get it lined up again" moments. Onenote 2018 / app has no such option so your nice tidy text can end up anywhere if you drag the container in error. Containers are hated by most sane One Note users and as Microsoft refuses to remove them for some perverse reason, turning them off was the only fall back. You cannot do that in the latest OneNote.

Regular Visitor

@Kelly Jones This is what I see - no Navigation Panes anymore.


Frequent Contributor

@jwerwin80 - I've never seen that.  I went through the settings/options and I can't find anything to enable that type of display, including those icons on the left.


What version of OneNote is that? Are you using Windows 10?


Has anyone else seen this?

Senior Member

SMrtin and ALL - it would greatly help understanding if when you write a comment, please include the Version (I.E. Win 10 / OneNote 2016) and a screen print of the issue.  Kelly Jones, it is ONLY in OneNote 2016 in the File, Options, 2019-05-01.pngDisplay.  If you really expect people to understand your issues, let alone repair the problem, you need to be MUCH more specific with your explanations.  I feel for the techs that read these posts and I understand completely why not many issues are repaired - because the people in MS most likely do NOT understand (and do NOT have the time to take to find) what you are talking about.

Frequent Contributor

Hi @Robert-ATL - my question about the version was for @jwerwin80 issue with seeing the navigation panes option (not referring to the containers comment).  I'm seeing the navigation panes option in my install of OneNote for Windows 10, which has what I think is the latest update.


That's why I'm thinking maybe @jwerwin80 is using a Mac or something? or maybe a preview version of OneNote for Windows 10?  Or even a version for iPad or some tablet?  Just guessing at this point why we're seeing different things.

Regular Visitor

@Kelly Jones - I'm on a Windows 10 computer. The screen shot is from the newest version of OneNote for W10. I briefly had the Navigation Panes option, but it vanished on April 19, after a Microsoft update was installed. I still have OneNote for W10 installed on my system. Hopefully they fix this in the next update. For now, for daily use I'm back on OneNote 2016. I have all of my Notebooks stored in MS One Drive, so it's easy for me to switch back and forth between the two versions. But needing to use an old (outdated 2016) version of OneNote to keep functionality I need is very frustrating. 

Senior Member

@jwerwin80 - I am using the same computer / OneNote software version as you so it must be something within your settings.  I would suggest you check to see if ALL your Notebooks are open by clicking in the purple More Notebooks link at the bottom of the left column as it looks to me in the 2nd screen you only have 1 Notebook.  I have also experienced this issue with my tablet when I loaded a new version.


I also noticed that it does not appear that you are logged-in.  Check:  in upper-right corner ***, Settings, Accounts and you can see your login info.  Also your name should be appearing on the right side of the purple bar at the top.  If you are not logged-in (and on-line) you will not be connected to your other Notebooks as it does not show below the 3 purple leaning books on the upper left corner.  See if that helps Jim.

New Contributor

@Robert-ATL I have the same 'issue' as @jwerwin80 where A> I dislike the default and seemingly only display option of OneNote for Windows 10. B> I do not see the 'Navigation Panes' option you seem to have (could this be an artifact of an older version on your specific machine?).


As a result of this, I constantly have to Hide Navigation to get rid of the visual clutter and regain my screen real-estate. Adds an extra click, but for whatever reason a fairly annoying one :\


Like probably the majority of us taking the time to comment here, I'm a long time and heavy user of OneNote for Desktop. This lack of display customization is unfortunately typical of modern MS app design IMO...cough...Teams...cough...and just a poor UI/UX decision considering the wide array of devices and screen sizes/preferences.



OneNote for Windows 10:


Version 16001.11601.20066.0


Brand new Surface Pro 6 running Windows 10 Pro 1809 (domain joined)

Desktop PC running Windows 10 Enterprise 1809 (domain joined)


Both lack this mystery Navigation Panes View option.

Regular Visitor

Would love the option to reorder and or delete tags that are not custom. 

Occasional Visitor

How can you send a copy with Outlook? Just found how to send a link, which my contact never managed to open, or to send a copy but not with Outlook...

Valued Contributor

@OhYeahYeah that is super complicated and I have no hope of it changing anytime soon.

You have to use the "share" button (top right), then click "send copy" (this UI has been updated, so it's better than before). BUT you have to have the Windows 10 Mail App configured for this to work, which no enterprise user likely has.

You cannot use non-windows-store-apps, like Outlook.

Occasional Visitor

@Ivan UngerThanks, Onenote2016 will have a long life, then... PS: outlook seems to be in the windows store

Senior Member

Does NOT work to send email with Outlook 365 - seems can only use Win10 Apps for Win10.  Another failure of the downgrade from OneNote 2016, as we could send with Outlook before.  Microsoft, PLEASE include Office 365 Programs / Apps as Win 10 SHARE options - what value is Share to your Office 365 customers?

Occasional Visitor

Watered-down, limited toolbars, no support for addins (OneTastic is a must)...AND NO OFF-LINE STORAGE? Are you insane?! So if I want to work on my Notebooks on a plane or while traveling or anywhere without a solid internet (for the love of God, stop acting like 24/7 high speed internet is always going to be available whenever and wherever I want to use my software!), I'm just SOL? This thing is like OneNote light; and you just automatically pulled the desktop version from my Office install with no notice...as if I'd actually prefer this childs' toy? 


I do believe Evernote just became more attractive.

Occasional Visitor

OneNote 2016 is the by far the best productivity software product from Microsoft - I would say from any company.  It's maybe the best product ever made (I've been deeply involved in using and building software since 1979 - so I've seen a few things).  It is amazing what I can do with OneNote 2016 after optimizing my use of it since 2014.  My entire brain lives in OneNote 2016!  I simply could not be nearly as effective without it.


Then I read this statement from Microsoft:


"We’re no longer developing new features for OneNote 2016. If you want to take advantage of the latest that OneNote has to offer, consider switching to OneNote for Windows 10."

This is unbelievable!  I'm apoplectic about this decision by the product team.  I literally don't understand the decision process to replace a vastly superior product with a dumbed-down, vastly inferior version.  There's no way I can convert to the Windows 10 version of OneNote.


I don't have to tell anyone reading this how many capabilities are missing from the Win10 version.  One version is a professional tool - one is a baby toy. 2016 is head-and-shoulders above the Win10 version.


I really, seriously hope the product team comes to their senses.

Regular Visitor

does anyone know how to reinstate onenote 2016 - I've read that it has security support until 2020, but it has been auto-removed from my machine.  I feel like Microsoft have just removed excel and replaced it with the calculator app!


I've tried the download in this link https://support.office.com/en-us/article/install-or-reinstall-onenote-2016-for-windows-c08068d8-b517... (I'm on the 64 but version, installed via a business 365 connection). But after running the file and it saying Office is installed, there is no change.


I have no problem with unifying onenote, but it just seems like the Win10 version just isn't ready.  Would be great to have developed the desk version instead, with an option to turn on 'tablet /touch mode'. 


reordering and adding shortcuts to custom flags is what I'm missing most, but also the formatting and other shortcuts that come up when you highlight text.  Feels like most functions have either been removed or made more difficult to get to.


Regular Visitor

... and I've just realised what no offline means for me - I use Onenote as a repository for manuals and guides that I use when doing field work.  Guess I can't do that anymore.Smiley Sad

Senior Member
Regular Visitor

@Ed Aldrich had my hopes up for a moment there! - downloaded and run installer, OneNote 2016 no where to be found!  is it possible it is installed and hidden somewhere - it doesn't come up using the 'type here to search' bar or scrolling through 'all apps' in the menu?

Senior Member

very odd... As I'm still on ON16 I have not executed that install link but that one was provided a while back by MS as their official resource for this.


Also untested, here are all the "other" possible resources, also untested. Some of these go back a while so may or may not exist or work. YMMV.





the above make it difficult. If you're not in the US link in the correct language/country at the end.


Click To Run versions (note x86 or x64 as needed):




Download OneNote 2016 (yes, 2016) from the Windows Store (this is different from the UWP version)




If you go to this page:



And hover the Windows Desktop link the link shows up for the windows desktop x86 version. I derived the X64 version from that link by replacing the info in the string - there is no direct link to the X64 version.


OneNote2016 x64 download 


OneNote 2016 x86 download


you can still download the old (2016) version, see here: https://cloudrun.co.uk/office/onenote_2016_download/

Regular Visitor


very very odd @Ed Aldrich  - none of those links work for me either.  They all download the same installer (be it one for 64 and one for 32).  The Windows store link takes me to a with a tantilising 'install' button, but that, after signing in, only takes me to an account page where I can sign up to office 365 (which I already have as a business user).  I've clicked about on the links from that page and nothing is promising.


Senior Member

I dont know what to tell you at this point. The first link I gave is to the official Support Blog that says it is the proper downloads to both x86 and x64 installer (https://support.office.com/en-us/article/onenote-2016-is-missing-after-installing-office-2019-or-off...). If those bits are incorrect or causing you a problem I suggest you post a reply TO the source blog post and see what happens.


I'm not holding my breath, BTW

Occasional Visitor

Inserting a screenshot is a feature that I use constantly in OneNote 2016. The fact that the application minimizes itself when capturing a screenshot is a huge bonus, especially when working on single screen devices such as tablets and laptops. Having to use the Snipping Tool, or the less capable Snip & Sketch, is not nearly as convenient.


So I support 86,000 Hospital Workers and we have Office 2019 KMS Licensing. We cannot use this OneNote app. We have 1000 users PER MACHINE that logon and cannot create 1000 copies of an app into each users local profile.


Also we do NOT use Azure or online logons or storage. This is 100% due to security. There Onenotes have patient data in them and absolutely cannot be shared or stored outside the environment due to Federal Privacy laws.


I do not understand the move from a Ferrari in the form of Desktop Apps in Program Files to a Bicycle with one flat tire in the form of wizzywig xml files?  Modern apps are still terribly buggy. Do you know that the OneNote Modern App (or any app) won't function if the users AppData\Local is redirected to a D:\? It just cannot handle it. We have 256MB Solid State drives so all users profiles AppData (roaming and Local) are redirected to the D:\User Data drive and Windows 10 cannot handle it even in 1809. The apps just don't launch. If you move it back to C:\ they launch fine.


Do you know that it costs Healthcare 22 Terabyes in Internet Data per MONTH to update OneNote Modern apps on all workstations (260MB per machine x 86,000) and we don't use the store or have any 3rd party apps) because Microsoft has provided no way to control the auto updates or let us have an SCCM solution internally with a distribution point. It shut down our Emergency rooms network last week when OneNote started updating on 86,000 workstations x 260MB each = 22,360,000 MB of Data pulled from the Internet killing the LAN. We had to run uninstall scripts to remove it entirely from the machine.


We do have a Microsoft Architect now to see if they can finally design a solution to patch Modern Apps using SCCM.


We have so many problems with these apps that Most clients are going to LTSC 1809 without the Apps installed because at a Corporate level modern apps are a complete design disaster.




Senior Member

MICROSOFT - why are you not paying attention to ALL of these comments from your customers?


cc: lforbes

Frequent Contributor

Hey @jwerwin80 - My OneNote for Windows 10 was updated (within the last few days) and now I don't have the navigation options either.  When I clicked on "What's new" ("..." menu --> Settings --> About menu), I see an entry for navigation changes:




I've only used it a little, but my initial opinion is that I preferred the previous UI.

Senior Member

@Kelly Jones I had this issue also.  After the upgrade it was another week +/- that I started receiving the new navigation panes.  Do NOT understand the upgrade process as the version number does NOT change, however occasionally I start receiving new options / "upgrades".  Would like to be given the option of accepting or delaying upgrades as I may be in the middle of my work when suddenly OneNote closes down for no reason - or possibly because receiving another upgrade that is certainly not important at that moment.  Suggestion - wait a week or so...

Senior Member

@Kelly Jones I had this issue also.  After the upgrade it was another week +/- that I started receiving the new navigation panes.  Do NOT understand the upgrade process as the version number does NOT change, however occasionally I start receiving new options / "upgrades".  Would like to be given the option of accepting or delaying upgrades as I may be in the middle of my work when suddenly OneNote closes down for no reason - or possibly because receiving another upgrade that is certainly not important at that moment.  I cherish the days before when Microsoft was seriously the best software and hardly ever had bugs because products were well tested.  Suggestion - wait a week or so...

Occasional Visitor

I was one of the first people in my company to basically mandate the use of OneNote for all of my leaders, today i am in disbelief with the changes that have been made in the latest version from 2016 to OneNote.  Today i finally went back to the 2016 version and was instantly relieved.


So when you say that you listened to users and are releasing the latest version that includes all of our input then you clearly forgot about me.


Unless I am wrong you took away most of the favorable options that was directly in front of you in the 2016 version.  A better video of the changes would be great, and also a better way of knowing how you received input from apparent users for the changes you made i.e. changes votes or number of recommendations etc.


Thanks, Jim

Regular Visitor

@Ed Aldrich just to update, I didn't manage to resolve this.  My IT consultant couldn't replicate the issue and recommended removing and reinstalling Office.  I decided (not because of this) to get a new laptop anyway and although the new OneNote was installed by default I was able to install 2016 without any problems.   Thank you for your support. Robot Happy

Occasional Visitor

OneNote and additional features for it are the ONLY reasons I subscribed to Offfice 365 ) and I still bought 2 licenses for Office Pro Plus 2016.  With no changes in OneNote 2019 (which I guess really doesn't even exist) there will be NO reason to ever purchase MS Office again.   I'll be watching for some enterprising company to come out with a new and improved tool like OneNote as the online version pales in comparison to the desktop version.   Not to mention that I use numerous add-ins that bring additional functionality to  OneNote that MS never provided.  Gem for OneNote and Onetastic add unbelievable functionality to OneNote even though there are still shortcomings that MS has never addressed.  The add-ins make OneNote into  a powerhouse of a tool and the online version will never have the functionality that the desktop version and add-ins provide.  


Scanning is one example of deletions from OneNote that made no sense to start with as it is a critical function, yet MS removed that as a native function.  PDF handling is pathetic as OneNote , being document oriented for a lot of uses, should handle PDF's natively.   Scanning to OneNote online is just another example of a big step backwards.  Who has time to scan a large document that they are working with and wait until it uploads at very slow upload rates and then find out that they have to make some revisions and rescan and do it all over again.  No thanks.


I will have to than MS.  They will be saving me much money in the future.  I'll have the best that they will have to offer now and for the future.   All the other apps are pretty much at maturity as well.   There is little else that can be done to dramatically improve the other staples of an office suite... spreadsheet, word processing, presentations, publishing, and email/schedule/contact management will unlikely see any major breakthroughs.  So I have little doubt that I will ever really have to upgrade past 2016.   MS is missing the boat.  Instead of making Office the irreplaceable flagship of office suites, they have succumbed to Googles free and online model.   Fine for the casual user.   Inexcusable for professional users.  They have torpedoed themselves.  Professionals do not live in an online world.... and carry laptops that run full fledged programs so that they can use the full-blown tools of their work anywhere... with no need for an internet connection to do their jobs.    So... I'm betting that most people will buy their final version of Office - either 2016 or 2019 and make sure that they have it safely secured for the future as it will likely be irreplaceable and also be the last version that they will likely ever need.  


P.S.  - I don't know about all versions but some 2019 versions are still coming with OneNote 2019 (which I presume is the desktop variety), and Office 2016 in the various versions is still available to purchase.  So... grab it while you can.  It will probably be the last version you'll ever have to buy.  


Farewell to MS Office upgrading.   It appears that the next "big thing" as far as office / productivity software won't be coming from Microsoft anymore.   I'll be waiting for the next major change... a whole new paradigm.  I won't be holding my breath and I'll still be using OneNote Desktop version while MS tries to figure out ways to make the online version do things it will never be able to do.   Long live OneNote Desktop.

Senior Member

Before everyone decides to throw in the towel, check out the new OneNote Mobile upgrade that came out this week.  This is one of the first really serious upgrades that I have seen for this product ever.  Thank you Microsoft!  Some of the features include the ability to actually move / relocate pages within Notebooks and to other Sections and Notebooks.  Looks as if synchronization has also improved but I believe many of the issues are actually with the connection portion of 365 which needs upgrading, especially with Outlook Calendar.  While the Mobile version now has improved to operate with many of the desktop features (the competition cannot dream to compare), it is now time for a significant upgrade of the desktop version to include many of the features from the 2016 version that everyone has been writing about (refer to the NUMEROUS comments in this blog).  It is the only way to stop this blood bath and save OneNote and even restore faith again in Office 365.  If Microsoft is taking OneNotes seriously let us see?

Occasional Visitor

I recently decided to re-install all of Windows completely to refresh to the latest version (my old installation seemed bogged down and for some reason full AMD graphics controls stopped working, despite repeated attempts to clean and reinstall the drivers).


Anyways,  one of the first things I do on new installs is install Office 365.  Guess what?  I've decided to revert to by old Windows install because I found that OneNote 2016 is not part of a fresh Office 365 install.  The experience with OneNote UWP, while I'm up to trying cutting-edge apps, has been severely lacking.


OneNote 2016, next to Excel, is the premier and staple app I use for all my work, both business and personal.  I consider myself deeply dedicated, if not an expert, in the integral functions that OneNote 2016 currently provides to my Office integration, use and workflow.  The route Microsoft has taken with this OneNote "enhancement" is defective and counterproductive.  Sorry to see this direction in decision and implementation.


To say this neutered version is a suitable replacement for the real OneNote is the worst kind of lie.  


Occasional Visitor
You have got to be out of your ever living mind if you think that corporate, business, and entrepreneurs are going to be forced into putting all their business secrets on a cloud that is not under their control. NO. No. NO. For those of you who need to start migrating away from OneNote because of this unwanted and unwarranted change I'd like to offer you a couple of options although they are not perfect yet. 1. MyBase is coming along nicely although it is made by a Chinese company which may be problematic to some of you. I know I'd keep mine locked behind a firewall and prevented from making outbound or accepting inbound internet connections. In my opinion, Mybase is the closest to OneNote at this time. 2. Joplin - Joplin has its quirks but it has a full dark mode and can be useful as a note taking app. 3. Mindforager - This app is the most interesting and intriguing of them all. But the interface is just messed up and as unintuitive as any I have ever seen. It has enormous potential if users and perhaps some UX design focused individuals were to approach the developer and convince him to abandon his strange interface. I really really want to like Mindforager but its interface is stopping me from going all in on it right now. These should give you something to start playing with while Microsoft gets its crap together. It took them like two decades to move forward with a dark mode and when it comes to compatibility, the Apple Notes program still has a better dark mode than OneNote does. Shame Shame Shame. I'm sitting here starting at 3 mini suns on my desk right now because all my monitors are on ms web pages where the developers are so all in on white backgrounds it makes you think they are in some cult or something. Trust me, those of us who stare at computer screens all day hate it.
Occasional Visitor

I use OneNote 2016 to work a lot ! I change my computer and now I can´t open the ONeNote 2016 with the default OneNote in Office 365. Also I can´t transform to the new format or download OneNote 2016. Please I need help, I can´t loose information because you want to do an upgrade of the app. 

Established Member

Like finding the Holy Grail, isn't it!?


Try this link from Microsoft Support:




There are 32- and 64-bit installer links there. With luck they may still work

Occasional Visitor

From all that I can see you're forcing everyone to the cloud and that doesn't work for me.

I need the option the save files to one of my NAS devices .  The nature of the data as well as internal oversight and client security do not lend themselves to cloud storage.  I read that Microsoft only plans to support OneNote 2016 through October of 2020. After that time will there be an option to save files to local or NAS drives.  If the answer is no I need to start panning a migration away from OneNote.


Any suggestions?


Established Member

"...will there be an option to save files to local or NAS drives?"


Short answer is "NO". Cloud storage only.

Regular Visitor

Mr. Devereux, do you read the comments?

I wonder, because it is clear from them that OneNote 2016 is the "Best version of OneNote on Windows". There is just so much missing in the UWP app from the full desktop version. UWP is dead, Microsoft admitted as much at Build. Give it up, bring back OneNote 2016 and continue upgrading it.

Senior Member

I think we are starting to see the issue here... are they wanting everything in the "CLOUD" so that they can sell the information on the advertising market as Google has shown as the example or to the government to monitor your activity?  Why else would they insist in GIVING? free cloud space if there is not a benefit for the company?

Established Member

@William Devereux left the OneNote team many months ago. I personally have no idea who his replacement is.


can tell you that - since he left, and to the best of my knowledge - nobody from the OneNote team has posted a single response to this blog. In oter words, all the negative commentary here is falling entirely on deaf ears. i would love to be proven wrong,