Once you are successfully connecting to OneDrive for Business shared folders, you may want to remove access to a user, disconnect from a set of data shared to you and most importantly understand what happens to a set of shared data once permission to access it is removed.

In my previous post I have described various aspects of OneDrive for Business

Here we are going to disconnect from a set of data shared to Clair. I will show how to do it from the point of view of the sharer, me, and from the point of view of the person who was shared to, in this case, Clair.

First of all, let discuss what happens when a user loses access to shared files. It often comes up as the fear is that the files will be retained on the end user’s computer. Without a deliberate effort by the end user to circumvent security, this is not the case. Once the permission is removed, within a few seconds the files will be completely removed from the end user’s computer. The only proviso is that the end user computer must be online. If it is not, then the first time it comes online, the files will then be removed.

Removing access to a set of files shared to you.

Right click the OneDrive icon on the taskbar near the clock.

Select Settings, this will open the screen shown below.

You can see the folders shared by me to Clair called AAA Documents. Selecting Stop Sync will remove the folder AAA Documents and all of the contents from the computer. They do not go to the recycle bin and they are not recoverable once removed.

However, as the end user, you can go back to the original link that was sent to you and reconnect to the shared folder.

Removing access to a files you shared with another user.

Perhaps the easiest way is to go to the folder you shared in OneDrive and right click it.

We’re going to unshare access to AAA Documents. This will stop the end user reusing the link you shared to them previously so they will not be able to access the files.

Select the option to View Online. See How to access the Microsoft 365 portal for the web part of this tutorial

Your web browser will open to the contents of the shared folder.

Click on the Share button at the top of the window and then the hamburger (three dots) and select More Options (below), the only option being Manage Access.

On the right of the browser screen you will see the various shares you have created for the folder.

You may see shared links (Anyone with the link can edit) but the one we are looking for will say People you specify can edit.

Click on the icon below those words next to the arrow pointing down and you will see the entire list of people the folder has been shared with.

Click on the X next to a name to remove the share. In this case, I will click on the X next to Clair Wedge.

Obviously, this may be a big step so you have to confirm you are removing access. Don’t forget that doing so will remove the files from any devices Clair owns.

On the end user’s computer, the following message is shown, confirming that the files have been removed from their computer. They are not given an option to keep the files, they are simply removed. The original data stays safe in OneDrive though, it is not deleted from there.

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