How to remove OneDrive in Windows 11 or disable it

Claudiu Andone
by Claudiu Andone
Windows & Software Expert
Oldtimer in the tech and science press, Claudiu is focused on whatever comes new from Microsoft. His abrupt interest in computers started when he saw the first Home Computer as a kid. However, his... Read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • If you have better alternatives to cloud backup, you can easily remove OneDrive from Windows 11.
  • We also covered a few ways to disable the app, stop it from running, or pause syncing on your PC.
  • Feel free to limit the files and folders you want to back up to just the essential ones.
How to disable or remove Microsoft OneDrive in Windows-11
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Microsoft has implemented OneDrive to work as a native cloud service in Windows 11 but not all the users want it on their PC.

Whether you prefer other cloud backup services like Google Drive and Dropbox, or you just don’t intend to save your data in the cloud, you look for a way to remove or disable OneDrive in Windows 11.

There are many options here and you can even pause the synchronizing option for a certain period of time and think things over.

How can I pause syncing for OneDrive in Windows 11?

If you’ve changed your mind and you still want OneDrive on your PC but want to stop syncing for a while, that’s pretty easy to do:

  1. Click the OneDrive icon in the status bar, then select Help & Settings.
  2. Now click on the Pause settings drop down menu and select to pause the service for 2, 8 or 24 hours.

Of course, that is only a temporary solution because after the pause time is over, OneDrive’s syncing will resume.

So, if you are sure you want to disable or even remove OneDrive from your system, read on to make the necessary adjustments.

How can I disable or remove OneDrive in Windows 11?

1. Unlink the PC from OneDrive

  1. Click the OneDrive icon in the status bar, then select Help & Settings.
  2. Next, select Settings from the list of options.
  3. In the next window, click on Unlink this PC.
  4. Confirm the selection by choosing Unlink account.

If you change your mind and decide to keep it, learn how to disable OneDrive pop-ups in Windows 11 and keep it from interrupting your work.

2. Uninstall OneDrive

  1. Click the Start button and select Settings.
  2. Now choose Apps from the left pane and click on Apps & features from the right.
  3. Wait until the list of apps is populated, then look for Microsoft OneDrive, click the three dots button from its right, and select Uninstall.
  4. Hit the Uninstall button again to confirm your selection.
  5. When you’re prompted if you want OneDrive to make changes to your PC, click the Yes button.
  6. Reboot your PC for the changes to take effect.

After that, the system will uninstall OneDrive from your PC and you will no longer be bothered with any possible dialogues to sync your data.

In fact, every time you’re looking for ways to improve your computer’s performance, check out this guide on how to uninstall apps in Windows 11.

3. Disable OneDrive using the Group Policy Editor

  1. Press the Windows key + R to launch a Run console, type gpedit.msc, and press Enter or click OK.
  2. Navigate to the following policy: Computer configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\OneDrive
  3. Double-click the Prevent the usage of OneDrive for file storage key to open it.
  4. Select Enabled from the top left corner, then click Apply and OK.

4. Disable OneDrive using the Registry Editor

  1. Press the Windows key + R to start the Run console, type regedit and press Enter or click OK.
  2. Navigate to the following key: Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\OneDrive
  3. Double-click the DisableFileSyncNGSC key. If you don’t find it in the list, right click in the right window, select New, then choose DWORD (32-bit) Value and name it DisableFileSyncNGSC, then double-click it.
  4. Now enter 1 in the Value data field and click OK.
  5. Restart your computer for the changes to take effect.

If the situation gets out of hand, we also have an article on how to fix broken Registry items in Windows 11.

5. Disable and uninstall OneDrive using Command Prompt

  1. Click the Search icon from the Taskbar, type command prompt, and click on Run as Administrator to start Command Prompt with full privileges.
  2. Type or paste the following command and press Enter to run it: taskkill /f /im OneDrive.exe %SystemRoot%\SysWOW64\OneDriveSetup.exe /uninstall

You might also be interested in how to disable background apps in Windows 11 and free more memory in the process.

6. Prevent OneDrive from starting

  1. Right-click the Windows button from the Taskbar and select Task Manager from the list.
  2. Now click the Startup tab.
  3. Click on OneDrive from the list and hit the Disable button from the bottom right corner.

If Microsoft OneDrive doesn’t start in the first place and doesn’t connect to your account, it won’t be able to perform any syncing.

That’s why preventing it from starting can solve this problem without uninstalling or disabling it all together.

How can I turn off the OneDrive sync for a specific folder?

Instead of disabling or uninstalling OneDrive, you could take a more precise approach and stop syncing OneDrive just for the folders you need to, leaving just the important data for that.

  1. Click the OneDrive icon in the status bar, then select Help & Settings.
  2. Next, select Settings from the list of options.
  3. In the next window, click on Choose folders.
  4. Now uncheck the folders you’re not interesested to back up and click OK in the end.

You now have all the possible options of handling OneDrive on your PC, from simply removing it to tweaking its settings and unlinking your account.

If you successfully removed OneDrive, make sure you have other alternatives to back up your sensitive files.

It’s always a good thing to have a dedicated software tool installed on your machine, perform regular backups, and cover for any possible unfortunate events.

And if we’re talking about backing up your data, we also want to suggest staying on the safe side with the best antivirus options for Windows 11.

Malware and virus attacks can cause file corruption and loss so having a strong antivirus and backing up your data go hand in hand.

Even more, you can also remove Teams from your Windows 11 device or disable background apps. Some of them can slow down the PC performance and you can easily avoid that.

If you have any suggestions or questions, leave us a comment in the dedicated section below and we will get back to you.

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