Microsoft deep-sixes unlimited storage for OneDrive and Office 365

Microsoft has removed the unlimited storage tier from its OneDrive subscription plans, and cut down the free storage tier from 15GB to 5GB. The company says a percentage of its users were abusing the unlimited storage tier, backing up multiple computers and storing their entire movie collections and DVR archives. At least one user managed to upload 75TB of files to the service. Microsoft says that it wants OneDrive to be a tool for productivity and collaboration, not a backup service.

As a result, all Office 365 Home, Personal, or University subscriptions will have a 1TB cap. The 100GB and 200GB plans will be nixed in "early 2016," and they'll be replaced by a 50GB plan at $2 per month. That's also the date when the OneDrive free plan will have its storage cut from 15GB to 5GB, and the 15GB camera roll bonus removed.

Microsoft will notify Office 365 users affected by the 1TB change, and the company will allow excessive users a grace period of 12 months to get their files off the service. Users subscribing to the free tier also get a year-long grace period to adjust to the 5GB space and a free one-year subscription to Office 365 Personal, which includes 1TB of storage. Current subscribers to the 100GB and 200GB plans remain unaffected. Finally, if you're displeased with these changes, Microsoft will give you a prorated refund of your Office 365 subscription.

Comments closed
    • Dr_b_
    • 4 years ago

    “The company says a percentage of its users were abusing the unlimited storage tier”

    Do they know what unlimited means? How can you ‘abuse’ unlimited storage by storing data?

    So the service never was unlimited, it was marketing bullshit, and now they are telling everyone what the real limits are because for some reason they never conceived of the possibility that users would try to store unlimited data.

    This is like the cellular data plans with unlimited data, which also was never really unlimited.

    Aren’t there laws against lying about your product?

    • Prototyped
    • 4 years ago

    Sigh. Not the first time they’ve done something like this.

    Back before Windows 8 launched, SkyDrive then offered 25 GB free. Then after the launch Microsoft dropped the free offering to 7 GB. (They offered to [url=https://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/04/23/the-next-chapter-for-skydrive-personal-cloud-storage-for-windows-available-anywhere.aspx?Redirected=true<]grandfather in users of the 25 GB offering[/url<] as an opt-in. I took advantage of that plus the camera upload option for a total of 40 GB free.) I guess I'll look for an alternative. Anyone know of any Android uploader app that can use Tencent Weiyun (10 [b<]T[/b<]B free) or Qihoo 360 Cloud Drive (36 TB), [i<]but[/i<] which encrypts and decrypts the data client-side? Windows? Linux?

    • dikowexeyu
    • 4 years ago

    50GB at $2/month, is more expensive than a SSD.

    It illustrate how oxymoron is all the cloud babble. No corporation can afford the same amount of hardware as all his clients.

    Creepysoft wants to migrate everybody to the cloud, turning every device into just a dumb terminal, de-powering the consumer with lag and scarcity.

    Creepysoft cannot be trusted. You never know what it will do in the future with all your data and information collected.

    • Zizy
    • 4 years ago

    Offering unlimited storage in the first place was dumb as OneDrive was the best already. But axing low tiers and mid tier options is completely retarded. Why would people want OneDrive then? Google Drive offers more space for about the same functionality and syncing and Dropbox works better. Heck, even Apple is cheaper.

    Plus, why complain people are using 75TB? They made a huge announcement of “UNLIMITED!”.

    • TopHatKiller
    • 4 years ago

    I apologise to MS for the 75TB thing… yep, that was me. And it was just my archive of complaints, moans, flamewars and other assorted nonsense to do with my online personalties.
    Bugger.

    • albundy
    • 4 years ago

    Had to quickly download all my backups from Adrive before it closed down. Glad I went with google drive instead of these clowns. hotmail will always only be my spam dumpster when i have to register with an email. nothing good has ever come of it since it started.

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 4 years ago

    I love how Microsoft takes away the toys from ALL the kids, even the ones on the free tiers, because of the people on the paid tier. It doesn’t even make a lick of sense. They’re conflating one with the other. Just because the unlimited tier were taking advantage of their promise of “unlimited” storage, why would that mean that people with 15-25GB should now drop down to 5GB? You’d think those people using 15-25GB of storage would… pretty much be accounted for since they had limits.

    But to read this, it’s like Microsoft didn’t expect users who had 25GB limits to use 25GB any more than they expected users promised “unlimited” to use it.

    Microsoft’s biggest problem is they never think anything through before they do it and then they think that they can just shove that genie back in the bottle if they shove hard enough and forcefully enough.

    And they never ever consider the PR/spin consequences of doing something so universally stupid (whether you think them offering it in the first place as unlimited or taking it away, I leave to you).

      • ZGradt
      • 4 years ago

      They probably planned it all along, offering a generous free plan to get people hooked, and then forcing them into paid plans by lowering the caps. The unlimited tier is just a scapegoat. A pretty sneaky way to shift blame.

      • jihadjoe
      • 4 years ago

      640k ought to be enough for everybody.

    • sweatshopking
    • 4 years ago

    This is stupid. I have 389GB stored on one drive, and it is now going to be obnoxious to pay for. Not impressed. Might consider alternatives, but likely, sadly, I’ll just end up with a 365 subscription. 🙁 I already have office 2013 professional pro.

      • Ninjitsu
      • 4 years ago

      When SSK is not impressed with MS…you know they’ve ****ed up.

    • USAFTW
    • 4 years ago

    So, If we like our current OneDrive storage, we get to not keep it?
    Thanks Obama.

      • NeelyCam
      • 4 years ago

      You didn’t build that.

    • deathBOB
    • 4 years ago

    In isolation this is no big deal, but they seem to chnge their minds about a lot of things like this. I don’t trust MS to follow through with any of the promises they make.

    • End User
    • 4 years ago

    I have a 365 account (both personal and work) and I don’t bother with PainDrive. It is a clusterf.uck of a product.

      • NeelyCam
      • 4 years ago

      Language! Trying to trick the autofilter, eh?

        • End User
        • 4 years ago

        What? No. How could you think that?

        • albundy
        • 4 years ago

        pfffffttt, you pc bruh? you gotta check your privileges bruh.

    • Chrispy_
    • 4 years ago

    Unlimited Ltd.

    • kvndoom
    • 4 years ago

    What did you THINK people would do with unlimited storage accounts, genius?!?

    • cygnus1
    • 4 years ago

    This move is really shady. This is clearly due to someone miscalculating the cost of running this service vs what they can charge for it and realizing it will never make them any money, even with only non-abusing users.

    It is absolutely not motivated by individual users abusing the service. Those users could be handled by canceling their service. I’m pretty sure about the only way to put that much on the service is to violate the TOS with what you’re putting up there.

      • gamoniac
      • 4 years ago

      They could very well underestimate the cost as you pointed out but that doesn’t mean the decision is shady. It is just a business decision — cost is a factor for companies and individuals alike.

      PS: I do take issue with MS saying OneDrive can’t be used as a backup service. Say wha…?

        • cygnus1
        • 4 years ago

        You’re right, if that really was the decision (and I think it was) that part isn’t shady. It’s “the move” that’s shady. “The move” being blaming some minority of abusers for killing the system instead of admitting the real business reason that looks bad on them. It’s better optics to play the victim than to admit they couldn’t make it work the way they wanted.

          • HisDivineOrder
          • 4 years ago

          Pretty much Microsoft’s M.O., though. Blame anyone else rather than own up to their own failures.

        • Ifalna
        • 4 years ago

        That last sentence makes no sense. I thought off site backup was the whole point of PERSONAL cloud storage?!

        I mean how often do you really access your data from another computer as a private person? For me it’s extremely rare and I rather use USB drives instead of relying on an awkwardly slow internet download.

      • HisDivineOrder
      • 4 years ago

      Or Microsoft used the free press (and later confusion) of it being a widespread assumption that Office 365 comes with “unlimited storage” to continue to sell it for years to come in spite of their backpedaling on said promise.

      They probably think they can confuse enough users to make this a win for them and it only cost them a year-ish of unlimited storage. Think of all the articles telling people that Office 365 is a “no brainer” with unlimited storage that won’t be updated to reflect Microsoft’s change.

      This is going to burn people for years to come. Especially bad for the kind of person that won’t be aware of such a change because they don’t keep up to date with every little thing Microsoft decides to blog.

        • Ifalna
        • 4 years ago

        Well okay it’s not unlimited anymore. 1TB + Office for 7 Bucks/mo is an ok offer.
        G-Drive costs 10 bucks for the same capacity and I don’t get MS Office.

        I just wish Win10 would have a better sync client though. Not being able to interrupt the upload is a tad ridiculous.

      • cygnus1
      • 4 years ago

      So another thought occurred to me. Maybe they just see Apple charging way more for iCloud and just want to copy that. They’d get out of the race to the bottom with Google and probably make more money over time.

    • the
    • 4 years ago

    You know, when you advertise unlimited service, sometimes people will test that service. Unless there was some sort of term in the EULA that stipulated what types of files could and could not be uploaded etc., then MS should own up to the idea of being unlimited.

    I also take particular note that using OneDrive as a means to backup documents is a good idea: if you local system dies, you can download an copy that you uploaded previously. While a bit different than a full system backup, this basic idea is something that MS actually advertises as a reason to use OneDrive.

      • blastdoor
      • 4 years ago

      [url<]https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=NL_pRiXov7Q[/url<] I agree!

    • Bensam123
    • 4 years ago

    Microsoft learns what it’s like to offer a similar service to Google… and then figures out they don’t like it!

    • Ninjitsu
    • 4 years ago

    In other news: Google Drive is rolling out support for WhatsApp backups (you’ll be able to set it as a target from within WhatsApp).

    • Noigel
    • 4 years ago

    [quote<]Microsoft says that it wants OneDrive to be a tool for productivity and collaboration, not a backup service.[/quote<] So much harder to take something away than it is to never give that thing in the first place. If they wanted to make OneDrive a healthy yogurt shop all along then they really shouldn't have offered unlimited sprinkles in the first place.

      • Peter.Parker
      • 4 years ago

      What? No car analogies yet?
      Let me try one for size.
      Microsoft offered a Porsche for everyone, but it’s free only if you keep the speed under 15 miles/hour at all times

        • Chrispy_
        • 4 years ago

        It’s more that when you bought the Porsche it came with a lifetime free fuel card but after the sale was done they told you that they’re changing the lifetime free fuel card to a one-year free fuel card.

          • Peter.Parker
          • 4 years ago

          M’kay, if you want a better analogy, let’s say you rent a car that comes with unlimited mileage. And then they tell you that it’s not unlimited, and it’s only on some roads that you are supposed to go. Or else!

    • superjawes
    • 4 years ago

    [quote<]At least one user managed to upload 75TB of files to the service.[/quote<] I'm guessing that's 74.75 TB of pr0n and 250 GB of cat pictures.

      • Vaughn
      • 4 years ago

      And most likely someone with a google fiber connection.

        • NeelyCam
        • 4 years ago

        Hmm… do we know anyone with that connection…?

          • HisDivineOrder
          • 4 years ago

          No wonder he missed that “Big Game.” 😉

      • Fieryphoenix
      • 4 years ago

      Nope. 75 TB of cat porn images.

    • invinciblegod
    • 4 years ago

    Well, at least they’re offering refunds!

    • guardianl
    • 4 years ago

    “The company says a percentage of its users were abusing the unlimited storage tier, backing up multiple computers and storing their entire movie collections and DVR archives”

    Good to know microsoft is looking at the data users are uploading.

      • FakeAlGore
      • 4 years ago

      I don’t have any sensitive data that isn’t encrypted stored in OneDrive, but this still disturbs me greatly. I may switch to SpiderOak since I don’t trust Dropbox and am unfamiliar with the rest of the offerings available to me.

        • w76
        • 4 years ago

        They just had a $125/yr unlimited promo, which they run about once a year the last couple years, which I posted to SlickDeals and they were thoroughly unimpressed by.

        They’re worth a shot though, it’s not a perfect service but it’s got its advantages. It blows OneDrive out of the water in terms of backup and sync, since it had FAR more robust file versioning, but then again it’s not hard to beat OneDrive.

      • derFunkenstein
      • 4 years ago

      Just because there’s no quota doesn’t mean they can’t easily get reports of which users are storing how much stuff. The same type of tools are available on Windows and Linux, and probably even Mac OS X.

      • xeridea
      • 4 years ago

      They could just be looking at file extensions and sizes. If it is a multiple gig MKV file, its probably a movie or show.

        • morphine
        • 4 years ago

        Sshhh… don’t bring logic into the MS hatorade box.

        We all know Google and Apple are holy, and MS is always evil!

          • NeelyCam
          • 4 years ago

          I think it’s appropriate to post [url=http://hijinksensue.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/2012-06-19-surface-tension.jpg<]this[/url<] again: [url<]https://techreport.com/news/29005/ipad-pro-goes-big-with-a9x-cpu-and-12-9-variable-refresh-screen?post=935980[/url<]

        • Deanjo
        • 4 years ago

        Maybe they are powerpoint renders or training videos.

      • NeelyCam
      • 4 years ago

      [quote<]Good to know microsoft is looking at the data users are uploading.[/quote<] Did you expect anything less?

        • nanoflower
        • 4 years ago

        Surprise everyone providing such a service is looking at what you are uploading. They don’t care about the content but the type of content and how much there is are important in figuring out what services and prices they should set. I’m sure it’s also part of their software to look for duplication so if there are 5000 people uploading identical copies of JoesCrabShow.mkv they don’t keep 5000 versions online but only one with a link for all 5000 uploads. That sort of savings must show up in their daily/weekly/monthly reports so anyone would know if they are getting flooded with images, archives or movies.

        • TruthSerum
        • 4 years ago

        “Onedrive specific”

        When you use OneDrive, we collect data about your usage of the service, as well as the content you store in order to provide, improve and protect the services. Examples include, indexing the contents of your OneDrive documents so that you can search for them later and using location information to enable you to search for photos based on where the photo was taken. We also collect device information so we can deliver personalized experiences, such as enabling you to sync content across devices and roam customized settings.

        “Personal Data We Collect!”

        Microsoft collects data to operate effectively and provide you the best experiences with our services. You provide some of this data directly, such as when you create a Microsoft account, submit a search query to Bing, speak a voice command to Cortana, upload a document to OneDrive, complete a survey, or contact us for support. We get some of it by recording how you interact with our services by, for example, using technologies like cookies, and receiving error reports or usage data from software running on your device.

        We also obtain data from third parties (including other companies). For example, we supplement the data we collect by purchasing demographic data from other companies. We also use services from other companies to help us determine a location based on your IP address in order to customize certain services to your location.

        The data we collect depends on the services and features you use, and includes the following.

        Name and contact data. We collect your first and last name, email address, postal address, phone number, and other similar contact data.

        Credentials. We collect passwords, password hints, and similar security information used for authentication and account access.

        Demographic data. We collect data about you such as your age, gender, country and preferred language.

        Interests and favorites. We collect data about your interests and favorites, such as the teams you follow in a sports app, the stocks you track in a finance app, or the favorite cities you add to a weather app. In addition to those you explicitly provide, your interests and favorites may also be inferred or derived from other data we collect.

        Payment data. We collect data necessary to process your payment if you make purchases, such as your payment instrument number (such as a credit card number), and the security code associated with your payment instrument.

        Usage data. We collect data about how you interact with our services. This includes data, such as the features you use, the items you purchase, the web pages you visit, and the search terms you enter. This also includes data about your device and the network you use to connect to our services, including IP address, device identifiers (such as the IMEI number for phones), regional and language settings. It includes information about the operating systems and other software installed on your device, including product keys. And it includes data about the performance of the services and any problems you experience with them.

        Contacts and relationships. We collect data about your contacts and relationships if you use a Microsoft service to manage contacts, or to communicate or interact with other people or organizations.

        Location data. We collect data about your location, which can be either precise or imprecise. Precise location data can be Global Position System (GPS) data, as well as data identifying nearby cell towers and Wi-Fi hotspots, we collect when you enable location-based services or features. Imprecise location data includes, for example, a location derived from your IP address or data that indicates where you are located with less precision, such as at a city or postal code level.

        Content. We collect content of your files and communications when necessary to provide you with the services you use. For example, if you receive an email using Outlook.com, we need to collect the content of that email in order to deliver it to your inbox, display it to you, enable you to reply to it, and store it for you until you choose to delete it. Examples of this data include: the content of your documents, photos, music or video you upload to a Microsoft service such as OneDrive, as well as the content of your communications sent or received using Microsoft services such Outlook.com or Skype, including the:

        subject line and body of an email,
        text or other content of an instant message,
        audio and video recording of a video message, and
        audio recording and transcript of a voice message you receive or a text message you dictate.

        [url<]http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/privacystatement/default.aspx[/url<]

          • NeelyCam
          • 4 years ago

          Gotta love that “Interests and favorites” section.

      • cygnus1
      • 4 years ago

      All of that information can be gathered without looking at any content. Scanning file metadata would reveal all of that. Metadata isn’t your content after all

        • DoomGuy64
        • 4 years ago

        Yes it is. It’s a part of your files, and scanning it would constitute snooping. There probably is a disclaimer in the EULA that states they would do it, but I don’t think people would condone such behavior if they knew it was happening.

          • cygnus1
          • 4 years ago

          It [b<][u<]IS[/b<][/u<] in the EULA, and both knowing and using that info is really the only way to make that sort of service even remotely economical. De-duplication is quite dependent on having hashes of your data, which would be another form of metadata. Knowing the type of content in the file is also necessary for providing almost all of the "features" of OneDrive (video transcoding, auto camera roll backup, rendering PDFs, OfficeOnline file editing... etc).

        • sreams
        • 4 years ago

        …said the NSA.

      • sweatshopking
      • 4 years ago

      Iirc the OneDrive for business doesn’t snoop.

      • Ifalna
      • 4 years ago

      Well of course they do. It’s an unencrypted cloud after all.
      Which is why I encrypt potentially sensitive data locally before uploading and don’t upload definitely sensitive data at all.

      • moog
      • 4 years ago

      It’s automated, file extension and file size is known.

      • HisDivineOrder
      • 4 years ago

      I thought it was common knowledge that Microsoft is one of the NSA’s trusted partners along with Facebook and Yahoo. Google and Apple seem to annoy the NSA, though. Especially device encryption.

        • sweatshopking
        • 4 years ago

        Ms has been in court forever against the nsa. Google built android. Enough said.

          • Deanjo
          • 4 years ago

          MS spies on their services users illegally as it sees itself as above the law.

          [url<]http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/03/21/hotmail-spying_n_5003855.html[/url<] It also admits aiding the NSA despite the lip service they give to their customers saying otherwise. [url<]http://mashable.com/2013/07/11/miscrosoft-helped-nsa-spy-hotmail-skype-outlook/#K8zuUBU__Pqd[/url<] Smoke and mirrors. Enough said.

            • sweatshopking
            • 4 years ago

            Your cognitive dissonance is amazing.

            • Deanjo
            • 4 years ago

            You must be looking in the mirror for that comment.

            • Meadows
            • 4 years ago

            Don’t know about the second link, but the first link doesn’t support your argument at all. It wasn’t just any “service user” but a former employee who was purportedly leaking trade secrets. Microsoft’s actions were an overreaction in some sense, but I’m not sure I wouldn’t have done the same.

            • Deanjo
            • 4 years ago

            It wasn’t their employees email they hacked, it was the end recipient which never has worked for MS.

            There is a huge difference in monitoring your employees work email and hacking your employees end recipients email.

      • EndlessWaves
      • 4 years ago

      Or maybe they just have asked the biggest users how they were using their service in the course of normal product research.

    • Goofus Maximus
    • 4 years ago

    Sigh. If you don’t want your service to be viewed as a backup storage service, maybe you shouldn’t name your product “oneDRIVE”

    This illustrates one problem with cloud storage; it can evaporate like a cloud.

      • Deanjo
      • 4 years ago

      MS master plan

      1) Get people to use their online services with big promises
      2) Cut back services for all citing abuse instead of just cutting out the abusive user
      3) Once users are dependent on the service, raise prices while holding their unsecured data hostage (obviously MS sees all that you upload and not for just indexing).

        • delsydsoftware
        • 4 years ago

        They could use the same model as rental storage units. If you get behind on payments, they just auction your data off to the highest bidder.

        • sweatshopking
        • 4 years ago

        Ms master plan? Yes. Also googles, apples, amazons, etc.

          • Deanjo
          • 4 years ago

          Actually the others have steadily given you more for less and encourage people to use it for back ups.

            • sweatshopking
            • 4 years ago

            What does that even mean? They DON’T want to get you hooked cause they’re trying to get you Amove invested?

            • Deanjo
            • 4 years ago

            It means they don’t over promise, under deliver and pull the rug from out under of your feet like MS just did. They are also more realistic with what their consumers want to do with the services. The consumer decides what they will use the storage for, not service.

            • Meadows
            • 4 years ago

            They didn’t “pull the rug out”. People who have exceeded the new limitations will be able to keep all their stuff for at least 12 more months, with free users being given the option of getting one year of free Office 365 with the new 1 TB limit (rather than 5 GB). Existing customers with 100 or 200 GB plans are not affected at all.

            The change does hurt their credibility but they’ve done everything I’d expect as a customer to make the shift smoother and more acceptable. Note: I’m not a OneDrive user, or the user of any cloud storage right now, for that matter.

          • blastdoor
          • 4 years ago

          Be fair now… Apple doesn’t raise prices later, they start with high prices to begin with.

            • sweatshopking
            • 4 years ago

            That’s somewhat reasonable. They’re still highly interested in ecosystem lockin.

            • demani
            • 4 years ago

            The trouble is that MS wanted lock-in, but then completely changed the rules. (and business users still seem to be up in the air on this). Coupled with the ridiculous OneDrive for Business client(but not OneDrive, oh wait now we use the same software for the two same named but different product lines) and it’s just a ridiculous case of obvious tail chasing by the line managers). I’m kinda embarrassed for them.

            • sweatshopking
            • 4 years ago

            I agree it’s been handled stupidly. I’m not impressed either. I don’t think i qualify for the free year of office 365 either. I own professional pro, so i don’t really want to pay for 365. It’s an annoying screw up for them.

        • Krogoth
        • 4 years ago

        Nah

        Microsoft master’s plan?

        Crashing their marketshare!

        Giving

        • shaq_mobile
        • 4 years ago

        That seems optimistically devious for Microsoft. It’s probably more like:

        1) show up late to the party
        2) bring all your beer to still be cool
        3) notice how much beer some people are drinking
        4) realize the reason you were late to said party is same reason you don’t have enough beer
        5) start taking half empty beers out of peoples hands and put back in box
        6) someone at the party won a bet on how long it would take you to fail at partying

        Meanwhile, Google is sitting with the homebrewers and having one too many. Apple is surrounded by cute chicks and has nothing interesting to say, but that’s not important, because he’s well groomed. Microsoft goes to bed early with his half rack and less friends than when the night started. Asus has a new haircut, some tattoos, and only drinks microbrew stouts to try and impress the “cool” kids. EA and Ubisoft couldn’t make it because they are seeing a therapist. AMD is talking about giving up all of his possessions to become less worldly, when everyone knows he’s just in debt. Blizzard has been hanging out for a while, but only knows how to mix one drink so people are slowly losing interest. Valve is in the back room admiring the host’s GabeN wallpaper and bedsheets.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This