FIX: OneDrive error this is not a valid file name

Vladimir Popescu
by Vladimir Popescu
Windows & Software Expert
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  • The OneDrive error This is not a valid file name means that you won't be able to update/upload Word files to your account.
  • Changing the path length, the name of the file, and the folder, are some of the troubleshooting steps you can apply in this situation.
  • For more practical OneDrive fixes, you can visit our specialized OneDrive Troubleshooting Hub.
  • Don't forget to bookmark our detailed Windows Fix section for more comprehensive regarding fixing different issues.
OneDrive error this is not a valid file name

Even though OneDrive is a very useful app, a large number of users see the This is not a valid file name error message.

Because it is one of the most used apps that offer online sharing, and file storage, OneDrive is bound to get into many conflicts with different system configurations and settings.

Here is what one user had to say about this issue on the Windows Answers forums:

I open a Microsoft Word document that’s saved in a folder within my OneDrive account, using O365 Business. When i edit that document then try to save it in a different folder within the same account. I receive the below error. The browser I’m using is Microsoft Edge. Any thoughts?

This error message seems to be associated with updating/uploading Microsoft Word documents on/to OneDrive. Read on to find out what you can do to troubleshoot it.


How can I fix the valid file name error on OnDrive?

1. Remove any unsupported characters from the name of the file

restricted characters - OneDrive error this is not a valid file name

File names should not contain any other characters other than letters and numbers. If your file has somehow accepted any other characters, remove them before trying to upload the file to OneDrive again.


 2. Rename the file that can’t be updated with a shorter name

  1. Right-click the respective file -> click Rename.rename - OneDrive error this is not a valid file name
  2. Edit the name and use a shortened version.
  3. Press Enter to set the new name and try uploading the file to OneDrive again.

3. Rename the folders in which you have the file located on your hard-drive

Folder - OneDrive error this is not a valid file name

Because of the same principles that apply to the method mentioned above, your OneDrive would not be able to process the information if the folder names are too big.

Follow the same steps mentioned in the first method, but right-click the folder, and not the specific file.


Folder doesn’t open on the external hard drive? Try this


4. Relocate the file to another path on your PC

 

Because Microsoft has a path character limitation of 259 characters, if the file is stored in a subfolder that has a very long path, this error will appear.

  1. Right-click the file with issues.
  2. Select the option -> Move to.
  3. Navigate to the required location on your hard-drive (as close as possible to the root of the partition).
  4. Move the file to the new location.
  5. Re-try uploading/updating your file to OneDrive.

5. Change the name of the file from within Word

ms-word - onedrive error this is not a valid file name

  1. Open the Word file by double-clicking it.
  2. Change the name of the file.
  3. Click File -> Save as.
  4. Navigate to your preferred location on your hard-drive -> hit Enter to save it.
  5. Try uploading/updating the file again.

6. Open a report ticket using the Microsoft Feedback Hub

 

  1. Press the Win+X keys on your keyboard -> click Settings from the menu that appears.
  2. Choose Privacy.
  3. Click Diagnostics and Feedback.
  4. Change the settings to Full.
  5. Click Report a problem ->  share as many details about the problem as you have (screenshots, steps that you already tried, application version, Windows version, etc.)

Note: If you’re worried about Microsoft gathering usage statistics because of the option activated in this method, don’t forget to revert the setting back to Basic from the Diagnostic and Feedback window.


In today’s guide, we explored some of the best troubleshooting steps available to resolve the This is not a valid file name error while trying to update or upload a Microsoft Word file to the OneDrive app.

We hope that you managed to solve this issue by using the methods we presented.

Don’t hesitate to get into contact with us and share your experience. You can do so by leaving a comment in the section found below this article.


FAQ: Learn more about OneDrive

  • What does it mean when it says file name is not valid?

This error message implies that the format of the file you want to work with is not compatible with the software you’re trying to use it with.

  • Can I change the name of my OneDrive folder?

You will be able to change the name of any local OneDrive folder, as long as you respect the path length limit of 400 characters, and also the rule for accepted characters (no %,”,^,*, etc.).

  • Where are OneDrive files stored?

Depending on your OneDrive settings, you will either back up and move all your files on the Microsoft servers, or you will also have a copy of the file moved to the cloud, and a copy on your hard-drive.