In Short. To disable OneDrive in Windows 11, right-click the OneDrive icon in the taskbar and select 'Settings'. Click on the 'Account' tab and select 'Unlink this PC'. This will remove your OneDrive account from your computer. You can also temporarily pause the app, quit it to keep it disabled, or completely uninstall it.

Microsoft's cloud storage solution, OneDrive, is a leading option for many people. One reason for that is that it comes baked into the Windows operating system. This means that, unlike alternative solutions like Google Drive or Dropbox, you do not need to download it separately.

However, if you prefer keeping your files locally or using another service, you may want to turn off OneDrive on your system. Disabling it can free up system resources. So, let's see how you can disable it on your Windows 11 system.

Pause OneDrive

If you only want to temporarily prevent OneDrive from syncing your files, you can pause it instead of disabling it completely.

  1. To pause OneDrive, open the system tray by clicking the '^' icon from the right of the taskbar.
  2. Then, click on the 'OneDrive' icon from the system tray. If you can't find the OneDrive icon, first open OneDrive on your system, as it isn't currently running.
  1. From the OneDrive window, click the 'Settings' icon.
  1. Then, select 'Pause Syncing' from the options.
  1. You can pause OneDrive for 2, 8, or 24 hours; click on the option for the desired time.

Disable OneDrive

You can also disable OneDrive by quitting the app and preventing it from starting up without unblinking or uninstalling it from your system. This way, you can use OneDrive again whenever you want to without the hassle of going through any setup or login.

  1. First, click on the 'OneDrive' icon from the system tray and click the 'Settings' icon from the OneDrive window.
  1. Expand the 'Pause syncing' option.
  1. Then, select 'Quit OneDrive' from the options.
  1. Click on the 'Quit OneDrive' button from the confirmation message.

This will quit OneDrive on your system and stop any syncing activities until you open the app again.

Now, by default, OneDrive is configured to run at startup. So, this means that the app will run on your PC's next reboot automatically. But you can change this behavior. The easiest way to do this is from the Settings.

  1. Open the Settings app (Windows + I) on your PC.
  2. Go to 'Apps' from the left menu.
  1. Click the 'Startup' option from the right pane.
  1. Then, find 'Microsoft OneDrive' in the list (either by scrolling or using the search bar) and turn off the toggle for it.

Now, OneDrive has been disabled on your system and will remain so until you run the app explicitly again.

Hide OneDrive from File Explorer

If you don't want the OneDrive folder in the File Explorer as well, you can hide the app.

  1. Open File Explorer (Windows + E) on your PC.
  2. Then, right-click the 'OneDrive' folder and select 'Properties' from the context menu.
  1. From the 'General' tab, check the box for 'Hidden' and click on 'Apply'.
  1. Then, click 'OK' from the confirmation box.

Now, if you don't want to use OneDrive at all on your Windows 11 PC, you can unlink your PC from OneDrive for a more permanent solution. Any files or data that you have in OneDrive won't be lost when you unlink and will be accessible from the web.

  1. Go to the system tray and click the 'OneDrive' icon.
  2. Then, click the 'Settings' icon from the window and go to the 'Settings' option from the menu.
  1. From the Settings window, switch to the 'Account' tab from the left.
  1. Then, click the 'Unlink this PC' option.
  1. Click on the 'Unlink account' button from the confirmation message.

This will unlink your OneDrive account from your PC. This would mean that even if you accidentally run the OneDrive app on your PC, any files won't sync to the cloud. To prevent OneDrive from even running and using any system resources at all, quit the app and also disable it from running at startup, as explained above.

Uninstall OneDrive

You can also completely uninstall the app from your system. The easiest way to do so is from the settings app.

  1. Open the Settings app and go to 'Apps' from the left menu.
  1. Then, go to 'Installed Apps' from the right pane.
  1. Find 'Microsoft OneDrive' from the list and click on the 'three-dot menu' next to it.
  1. Click on 'Uninstall' from the options that appear.
  1. Click 'Uninstall' again from the confirmation message.

In case you change your mind and want OneDrive back, you can always search for the 'OneDrive' app in the Microsoft Store and install it from there.

There you go. Whether you want to temporarily pause OneDrive, disable it, unlink your account, or go for a more permanent solution like uninstalling the app, it's all pretty simple. Go ahead and use the method that best suits your needs.