Stephen Rose
‎05-16-2017 10:04 AM

New Sharing Features For OneDrive and SharePoint

‎05-16-2017 10:04 AM

On UserVoice, “Share from Explorer” has been one of our most requested features from customers. Today, we are excited to announce that we’re bringing this capability to both File Explorer on Windows and Finder on the Mac. We’re also introducing an improved sharing UI that provides easier collaboration and better security.



For browser users, we’re bringing this same sharing UI to OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online websites. Here, users get the additional option of composing the email using Outlook on the web.




Share command

The Share command now sends shareable links by default rather than granting permissions to specific people like the old Invite people tab. This better matches user expectations that links sent in email can be forwarded to others by default. In other words, Share does the same thing as Copy link except it enables users to send the link immediately to recipients via email.


Both the Share and Copy link commands now default to the same permissions and use the same link settings.


Link types

Users can change settings on sharing links to one of three possible permission levels:


  • Anyone with this link: A shareable link that can be sent to others. It behaves like email. You can forward it to others or add people to the thread and it will work. This option does not require recipients to sign-in and hence is the most convenient for recipients. Use this for sharing content that can be freely shared with others, including people outside your organization. If you want people with the link to lose access after a certain date, you can optionally set an expiration date on the link.


  • Only people in [organization]: Users who open the link must sign-in or be signed-in to a non-guest account in your organization. It behaves like email with restrictions on it. You can forward it to others or add people to the thread, as long as the people added are inside your organization. If any external user gets a hold of the link, they will not be able to use it. Use this for sharing internal-only content.


  • Specific people: Grant permission only to the people you list. The link will only work for those people (and others who already have access to the item). If recipients want to send this link to anyone else, they need to ensure those recipients have been granted permission to the resource, otherwise the link won’t work. This option produces behavior similar to the "Invite people" tab in the old sharing UI.


Company admins who wish to change the default link permission can do so in the OneDrive Admin Center and the SharePoint Admin Center.


Users who want to explicitly grant permissions to an item without sending a link can do so by selecting “Manage access” and then selecting “Add people”. For example, if a user wishes to make sure that a folder can be accessed by an entire division, they may want to grant access here rather than send a sharing email to the entire division.


The new sharing UI starts rolling out this week on the following endpoints:

  • OneDrive for Business on the web
  • SharePoint Online document libraries on the web
  • Windows File Explorer context menu for sync'ed files ("Share" command)
  • macOS Finder context menu for sync'ed files ("Share" command)

We feel these new features will offer a more simplified experience for sharing files and folders in OneDrive and SharePoint while giving you greater control over who has access to your content.


Feel free to comment below and make sure to check out UserVoice if you have addtional suggestions on improving OneDrive.


Want a deeper dive on sharing? Check out this our newest Microsoft Mechanics video, "OneDrive for Business updates: simplified sharing and files on demand ".



Peter Klapwijk
Frequent Contributor

 Is this provided by a Windows or Onedrive update Windows File Explorer context menu for sync'ed files ("Share" command)?

Salvatore Biscari
Valued Contributor

@Stephen Rose

When a recipient gets a shareable read-only link to a document, he/she does not appear to be able download locally a copy of the document itself, which is a big difference from the case in which the document is sent as a traditional attachment.

Will this be addressed in the future?

Stephen Rice

@Peter Klapwijk, the update will come with a sync update, no Windows update required. We're targeting the next few months for that release. 


@Salvatore Biscari, we want to enable download of documents sent via anonymous link but we don't have a timeline for when that feature will be available. 




Stephen Rice

OneDrive Program Manager II




Allan With Sørensen
New Contributor

So this definitely has promise. I work at an educational institution though. And we don't necessarily want students to be able to see links shared with my organisation - thus in many situation this option is not relevant for us. Would it be possible to add an option - for educational institutions - whereby one could distinguish between shareable links for students and for staff? Or are we basically talking about sharing with AAD groups then?


Another question:

If I do choose to share with people in my organisation, which would probably be ok in most situations anyway, would that file then at some point turn up under "Find" or in Delve for a Student? OR for some other staffer, that I might not want the file to be seen by?

Stephen Rice

Hi @Allan With Sørensen,


Whenever you create a sharing link, the only people who can use that link are people who possess it. So if you create a sharing link that works for your organization and send it to one staff member, they are the only who will see it show up in Shared With Me or in Delve. Students could use the link, but they would have to have been sent it first. Unfortunately, we don't have a way today of locking down a link to only work for staff but not students. Thanks!


Stephen Rice

OneDrive Program Manager II



Paul Bendall

@Stephen Rice with an update to the sync client is it going to be possible to synchronise the configurations itself? For example I have a dekstop and a laptop I configure folders to always be available on this device and files on-demand. If I then move to the laptop do I get an option whereby I can can sync the same config from my desktop to laptop? The same solution would be beneifical when upgrading a machine, I can swap out one dive for a new device and not have to reconfigure the end users specific configuration





Stephen Rose

If you are running Windows 10 Enterprise, UEV can do some of that. We will also look to bring some admin controls post launch. We will share more on scenarios like this at Ignite.

Allan With Sørensen
New Contributor

@Stephen Rose Thank you for your reply.



I just want to be have a clear understanding of what happens. Say I do this:

1. Select a folder in OneDrive for Business online

2. Click on "Get a link"

3. Click on "Everyone with this link" (to change it)

4. Change to "Only people in <my organization>"

5. Click OK

6. Copy the link into an e-mail

7. Send the e-mail to someone in my organization...


Then, surely, the Office graph/Delve is not aware that I shared that link with someone? And then it won't show up for anyone in Delve or in searches? But anyone in my organization who gets a hold of that link, will still be able to open it and view or edit the files? I think most of our users are pretty confused about what consequences those different options have, when sharing a file and that can lead to erronous settings and sharing of files that weren't intended to be, which is very unfortunate.


Honestly, at this juncture, I finde things around sharing files/folders to be pretty confusing and needlessly complex for our very non-technical users. The are at least four more or less different ways of sharing a folder or edit who can access a folder. I am aware that there is another revision of the sharing dialogue coming, so I am looking forward to that. But please forward to the team that things need to be simplified and easier to understand (very broad wish, but also very relevant in this situation).