- Microsoft is making a controversial policy change to OneDrive’s storage structure for photos, which may result in users consuming more cloud storage.
- This change means that photos used in albums will count separately toward storage quotas, potentially consuming more space.
- To avoid disruptions, Microsoft recommends checking storage space, deleting large email attachments and duplicate photos, and is offering one-time free storage to existing customers.
OneDrive is one of the best cloud storage services out there, especially because of its cost and how tightly it integrates with Microsoft Office applications. The service is due to receive some AI features next month if the latest rumors are to be believed, but ahead of that, Microsoft has announced a change in policy that may be deemed controversial by many.
Dr. Windows reports that Microsoft is sending out emails to customers informing them that due to a modification in OneDrive’s storage structure for photos, you may end up consuming more cloud storage. This is because your photos will be backed up to your Gallery as usual, but if they are also used in albums, they will count separately towards your storage quota. For example, if a photo is backed up to the Gallery and is utilized in three other albums, it will consume four times the space than usual.
There are other impacts of this configuration change too. Once it kicks in and it forces you to exceed your storage quota, you will face disruptions while using Outlook, and you won’t be able to sync files to OneDrive or back up new items. As such, Microsoft has recommended checking your storage space and ensuring that you delete large email attachments as well as duplicate photos.
However, in order to grant some leeway to existing customers, it is also offering one-time free storage so that your workflow isn’t suddenly disrupted. You can check how much storage space you’ve been awarded by Microsoft through your OneDrive; it’ll be valid for one year since the date of issuance.
As it currently stands, the new policy will trigger from October 16, 2023, on a rolling basis. It will likely affect many customers who previously used to back up photos and leverage albums made from them without a second thought. Some users may also be forced to consider OneDrive’s paid storage plans, which is likely Microsoft’s incentive for implementing this change in the first place.