Microsoft backs down on counting photos in albums twice against a user's storage

Martin Brinkmann
Oct 6, 2023

Microsoft made a rather strange announcement back in September 2023 regarding storage on its OneDrive cloud service. The company said back then that photos that users put into albums would count twice against that user's OneDrive storage.

Albums are an optional feature of OneDrive. Users may create albums to sort photos into them. It is a popular feature, as it allows users to manage their photos better.

It was not really clear if Microsoft was storing photos multiple times on OneDrive, which would explain why it made the announcement, or if Microsoft was just trying to increase user sign-ups for paid OneDrive subscriptions.

Microsoft promised to give customers a temporary storage boost for a year to avoid that the change would push customers over their limits. After that year, customers would find themselves in the same situation, however, unless they would delete files on OneDrive or photos in albums.

Microsoft backs down

A support page update confirms that Microsoft has had a change of heart regarding the change. The company writes: "On August 31, 2023, we began to communicate an upcoming update to our cloud storage infrastructure that would result in a change in how OneDrive photos and photo albums data is counted against your overall cloud storage quota. This change was scheduled to start rolling out on October 16, 2023. Based on the feedback we received, we have adjusted our approach, we will no longer roll out this update. We will maintain the current photo album experience, as it is today."

To sum it up: Microsoft won't roll out the planned change on OneDrive. Photos that users put into albums won't count against a user's storage on OneDrive.

It is still unclear if Microsoft is storing album photos separately, but that is no longer a problem for users of the service.

Closing Words

Microsoft claims that it changed course because of feedback that it received. It is certainly possible that some customers made the decision to migrate to another cloud storage service, one that would not count individual files multiple times against a user's storage quota.

All in all, it is a welcome development for OneDrive users, especially those who use the photo albums feature.

Now You: do you store photos online? (via Dr. Windows)


Microsoft backs down on counting photos in albums twice against a user's storage
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Microsoft backs down on counting photos in albums twice against a user's storage
Microsoft won't roll out a change in mid-October 2023 that would have impacted the storage of users who use the photo albums feature on OneDrive.
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