Sharepoint Vs Onedrive Key Differences Aufait Technologies Microsoft Certified Partner Min 730x410 1

SharePoint vs OneDrive : Know How They Differ From Each Other

OneDrive and SharePoint are the two cloud services provided by Microsoft. They are extremely useful and provide various features that benefit organizations. But what is the difference between the two is a question people often ask. Although they have similar purposes and use cases, they vary in different aspects. This blog hopes to clear all your doubts on the SharePoint vs OneDrive and give you a clear picture of both Microsoft services. So let’s begin.

What Is SharePoint?

Microsoft SharePoint is a web-based collaborative platform and document management system that allows businesses and organizations to share and manage content, knowledge and applications. It facilitates teamwork by enabling users to easily find the information they need and seamlessly work together within the organization. SharePoint allows you to build a private website for your company to post and share all the relevant information. Therefore, it assists organizations in streamlining decision-making and improving information transfer, thus making it more organized, productive and unified. Some of the SharePoint services include security controls, co-authoring, versioning, and integration with third-party applications.

Advantages of Sharepoint

  • Optimizes business processes by ensuring necessary information is easily made available.
  • SharePoint is highly responsive for all devices and performs important tasks like sharing and storing documents, answering queries, etc.
  • It is highly scalable, simple, and quick, enabling you to connect with projects from anywhere, at any time, easily. 
  • SharePoint provides various features for maintaining content and documents effectively.
  • It assists team collaboration by making sharing ideas, documents and important information easier.
  • SharePoint provides easy integration techniques like Simple Object Access Protocol, Extensible Mark-up Language, various APIs, and event handlers.
  • Takes high security and authentication measures to ensure documents are safe and uses cloud storage to ensure nothing is lost.

Disadvantages of Sharepoint

  • It requires more development effort and therefore requires extreme planning.
  • SharePoint is expensive to set up and maintain and has a very pricey licensing structure.
  • Has poor search capabilities and requires a lot of internal customization.

Top Features of Sharepoint

  • Accessibility and collaboration
  • Microsoft suite integration
  • Security
  • Automatic updates
  • Web analytics
  • Customizability
  • Microsoft Office connections

What Is OneDrive?

Microsoft OneDrive is a personal cloud storage service that allows users to access their files from anywhere, backup data, share documents, and collaborate with other Microsoft Office applications. It is natively installed within Windows, making downloading and uploading files to the Drive easy and seamless. OneDrive also automatically syncs accounts, making the process much easier. It is an exceptional cloud service tool with various features like document scanning, online photo storage, general cloud storage, a protected personal vault, and backup folders.

Advantages Of OneDrive

  • Provides immediate access to data from anywhere, anytime, from any mobile device with synced accounts.
  • Uses strong encryptions to protect data, making them highly secure.
  • It enables easy file sharing without file size constraints by providing the receiving email id. 
  • It can restrict access and file synchronization capabilities for each device, allowing you to manage better who has access to what.

Disadvantages Of OneDrive

  • Limited time for recovering relinquished M365 licenses and the documents stored in them.
  • Has limitations on the data it can synchronize and store. It also restricts storing certain special characters in its documents.
  • There is a limit on file sizes and how many files can be uploaded or downloaded at a time.

Top Features Of OneDrive

  • Massive storage
  • Security
  • Accessibility
  • Mobile application
  • Auto saving
  • Two-stage file detection
  • Document scanning
  • Personal vault

Comparing SharePoint vs OneDrive 

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SharePoint and OneDrive are both cloud-based platforms created by Microsoft for efficiently storing and sharing digital data. Both focus on improving workplace management and making remote work experiences easier. However, they have quite a few differences; understanding them is essential to use them effectively. 

While SharePoint is more user-friendly for team collaboration and management, OneDrive is more fit for personal uses. Below we have conducted a clear comparison on SharePoint vs OneDrive so that it is easier for you to choose the one that is right for you.

  • Differences in Marketing

Although both serve as file-sharing platforms, they are marketed quite differently. For example, SharePoint is marketed as software that stores, manages and transfers information. On the other hand, OneDrive is projected as a platform fit for virtual work. 

Therefore, SharePoint is considered Microsoft’s original file-sharing platform that focuses on creating files, web portals, and data storage and sharing, catering to business operations management. In contrast, OneDrive is seen as the cloud-based software of Microsoft Office that focuses more on data storage and transfer rather than creating files and web portals. It also has two versions- one for businesses and the other for personal use, enabling it to cater to a wider demographic.

  • Differences in ownership and access management

OneDrive has centralized ownership, meaning it has an option for a virtual folder system that stores files and gives the owner access to view, share and edit information. This means the file creator has the sole ownership and authority to edit or share the data, making the platform safer and more private.

On the contrary, all users with access to the data can edit and share information on SharePoint. Each file uploaded on the platform has rules and regulations that have already been established regarding ownership. The creators can share data in groups; everyone added to it can view and edit the information. This makes it a preferred platform for team projects.

  • Differences in features and collaborative ability 

Both SharePoint and OneDrive can sync multiple devices for file transferring. However, there is a difference in their collaborative abilities. OneDrive only grants editing rights to the owner of the uploaded content. Also, since you cannot share document editing authority, there is lower scope for teamwork. However, it does allow other users to comment and add remarks on the documents. Additionally, hyperlinks in the documents built on OneDrive become inactive once the document is copied and the original is deleted, making it less effective. It also removes the data in closed accounts, which is yet another negative for collaboration.

In contrast, SharePoint allows authorization to the entire team, making it a more effective means of collaboration. You can easily store, edit, share and insert hyperlinks into the documents even if you are not the owner. Furthermore, it supports team collaboration project tracking features like calendars, status updates, dashboards and deadline notifications. Additionally, SharePoint offers a messaging tool called ‘Yammer,’ allowing team members to communicate with one another. It also has a library that features the combined assets of the company.

  •  Differences in data storing capacities 

Both SharePoint and OneDrive operate via cloud-based storage systems. OneDrive is ideal for storing simple and personal files as it protects information, restricts access, and enables information to be synced to other devices. However, it does not work effectively when it involves large numbers of people that require collaboration. 

OneDrive offers 1TB of storage space per user. This may be enough for a single user but insufficient for a group project involving lengthy data. Although you can purchase storage space in OneDrive, the maximum limit is 6TB. On the other hand, SharePoint allows you to purchase upto 15TB of storage capacity. It also offers on-premise storage, meaning you can upload and store data directly on the platform.

  • Differences in security features

Both platforms are great for safeguarding data. They encrypt documents in real time so that their security is guaranteed. They also provide previous versions of the documents so that information is retrievable in case they get accidentally deleted. Additionally, SharePoint offers more accessibility control features for documents as they are initially accessible to all. It also takes strict security measures to reduce the risk of malware threats by adding segmentation between files so that if one is affected, it does not spread to the rest of the files. In contrast, OneDrive does not have such strict security measures, as the files are only accessible to the creator.

  • Differences in syncing capabilities with other Microsoft 365 tools

SharePoint lets users easily sync with other Microsoft 365 tools like Yammer and Microsoft Teams, thus increasing its collaborative strength. It also offers the SharePoint Migration Tool, an easy-to-use migration solution that enables you to transfer content from on-premises SharePoint sites to Microsoft 365. OneDrive, on the other hand, does not collaborate as effectively with other M365 tools but does sync well with SharePoint. Since they are compatible with one another and complement each other’s performance, you can use SharePoint and OneDrive simultaneously.

  • Differences in maintaining file privacy

OneDrive is more effective when it comes to maintaining file privacy. This is because SharePoint heavily focuses on collaboration and provides access to all, making it riskier for personal documents. Since OneDrive does not have default settings that encourage collaboration, the owner has sole access to the documents, ensuring their privacy.

  • Differences in document and data management

OneDrive and SharePoint have similar templates, auditing controls, and versions. However, OneDrive cannot create separate web pages or portals that SharePoint offers. It does not come with an in-built CMS and therefore makes publishing documents online much harder when compared to SharePoint. On the other hand, SharePoint offers additional white-label features that you can use to set up connections between their company network, enabling easier data transfer.

Pricing Of SharePoint And OneDrive

Now that we’ve compared SharePoint vs OneDrive to know their differences, let us move on to their pricing. SharePoint has a good pricing scheme with two online plans. Plan 1 is suitable for single users and starts at $5 per user per month. Plan 2 costs $10 per user per month and is suitable for a complete enterprise. It also offers an Office 365 E3 suite at $20 per user per month. 

In the case of OneDrive, it offers a basic plan of 5GB storage free of cost and two other business plans. Plan 1 is offered at $5 per user per month, and Plan 2 comes at $10 per user per month.

How Does OneDrive Work With SharePoint?

OneDrive is available as a default library in both SharePoint Server and Microsoft 365 and enables users to synchronize its contents with one or more of their devices/computers. Using OneDrive allows you to ensure that business files are stored in a central location, making it easier for users to share and collaborate. It also reduces on-premise storage costs by moving the files to the cloud. OneDrive based on SharePoint differs from consumer OneDrive service as it is meant to store the user’s business documents and files.

So to explain how OneDrive works with SharePoint, it is simply the document library available in the user’s MySite. It works as a personal storage space for users through the document library or as a save-as location in Office 2013 or 2016. Additionally, OneDrive in a SharePoint Server on-premises environment stores users’ files in the SharePoint content database in the SQL Server. 

Choosing Between SharePoint And OneDrive

Now that we’ve gone through a deep comparison of SharePoint vs OneDrive, it is time for our final verdict. Both of them are equally useful for storing and sharing information. However, they both have features and capabilities that set them aside from each other. 

While SharePoint has features like project management, OneDrive offers personal documents and more privacy. Also, using SharePoint enables you to get automated workflows, cloud-based services and many other effective file storage and sharing capabilities. On the other hand, OneDrive provides more secure, personal and safer document creation, storage and sharing features essential for sensitive and private information.

Therefore, choosing one among the two is difficult as they offer great features and distinctive services. According to your needs and requirements, you can choose-

  • SharePoint, if you want better sharing and collaboration functionalities for your organization. 
  • OneDrive, if you want personal cloud storage to store your private photos, data and documents.

So, what is your choice? If you are an organization looking for SharePoint consultancy, we at Aufait Technologies can guide you. We are a Sharepoint development company offering a wide range of services in Microsoft products and solutions.


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