Issue opening SkyDrive files and notebooks from the Office hub on Windows Phone

Issue opening SkyDrive files and notebooks from the Office hub on Windows Phone

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I wanted to address an issue related to the SkyDrive release yesterday. For any of you who are using a Windows Phone, you may have noticed that if you had previously used the Office hub to view any of your OneNote notebooks or Office documents, you may have received a message that the items were deleted from the server, or could not be downloaded.

Your items have NOT been deleted from the server.

What happened is that the URLs for the documents have changed, and this has confused the Office hub into thinking they were removed.

We really apologize for this message and any confusion this may have caused. 

We’ve posted a workaround on that is required for you to get things working again.

Issue: We’re aware that some people are experiencing issues with opening SkyDrive files and notebooks from the Office hub on the Windows Phone, such as:

When opening a SkyDrive document from the documents pivot, or a document pinned to the start screen, an error message appears saying that the file could not be downloaded.

When opening a OneNote section, an error message appears saying that the section has been deleted from the server.

Workaround: To fix this issue, you will need to reset Office. In the event that you experience one or both of the above errors, be assured that your files have not been deleted, and no sections from the notebook were actually deleted, even though they may fail to sync temporarily. 

Follow these steps to reset Office on your phone.

Back up all your local documents:

Documents saved locally to your phone or unsynced changes to OneNote pages will be deleted during the workaround process, so you’ll need to create a backup copy for all of your local documents.

  • For local phone documents, create a copy either by emailing them to yourself or doing a Save As… to SkyDrive from the document context menu.
  • For OneNote pages that have unsynced changes, or pages that have been placed under Misplaced Sections, you can email the affected pages to yourself.

Reset the Office Hub:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Go to the Applications pivot.
  3. Select Office.
  4. Tap the Reset Office button. (If you get a message that Office could not be reset, reboot your phone and try again).

Once Office is reset, your files and notebooks should open properly from SkyDrive.

Omar Shahine
Group Program Manager,

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  • @abm

    I know I can use for web-based access to our SkyDrive.  The web based office applications on the SkyDrive are really cool and we may eventually start using them.

    The volunteers are having a hard time with it being cloud folders.  They used to use advanced sneaker net by passing files via USB sticks and have moved up to email attachments.  I was hoping Microsoft could take all the work out of creating a local network folder to SkyDrive by doing all the complicated work for us via a command button on the SkyDrive web page.

  • abm
    268 Posts

    @polodad47, it isn't necessarily required to map skydrive as a network drive in your computer. You can always use for web-based office app, sharing files, creating folders and uploading stuff etc with ease. All you need is a fancy browser independent of platform / OS.

    Having said that, if you have frequent usage or want to use the 25gigs of skydrive as storage on your computer you 'can' map it with the said method. Tough your idea to create url is good but i believe this can be made more ingenious and easy if the windows OS team provide us an outstanding option for skydrive in the map-network-drive setup window (as opposed to expect the user to enter the big scary URL with cid). Furthermore, the live-ID contact list can be pulled from Windows Live for the access control purpose, so the concerned users don't need to leave the windows explorer to set permissions.

  • Nathan and CrisLynch requested a desktop network link to SkyDrive.  

    @abm said this


    You can map SkyDrive in Windows Explorer using this address:


    where "your_skydrive_id" is the value of cid in the SkyDrive url which can be obtained when you browse to any of your folder on SkyDrive website (in my case it is 16 digits hexadecimal).


    Our church is trying to use SkyDrive to share files among the volunteers trying prepare Sunday's power point presentation.  We are currently emailing attachments to each other and I think SkyDrive will be a better solution, but there is no way I can train the volunteers to try to find the cid to create a network link to SkyDrive.

    Omar please create a "Create Network Link" button on the SkyDrive web page.  Since I am logged into my SkyDrive account the web page already has my user name and password.  The web page should be able to determine my desktop operating system (Mac, Linux, XP, Vista, Win7, Win8) and system type (64 bit, 32 bit).  The web page should pop a dialog box asking me for a name for the network folder being created (default to the account name ( would be meathotmaildotcom) ) and then create the SkyDrive network folder for me.

    Sharing, syncing and all that fancy stuff would be done thru the web interface.  We need a desktop network connection to SkyDrive so we don't have to go to non-Microsoft solutions.

    Thank you

  • @danielgr the Hotmail release is currently in progress, can't say exactly when you'll get it.

  • On my mango phone, some of my notes have been placed in a notebook called "Misplaced notes", underneath which it says "Phone" instead of "SkyDrive" (i.e. that notebook was created on the phone only, not on SkyDrive. I have also checked my windows live account on the web and in OneNote desktop (2010) and the notes that are stored in Misplaced notes on the phone are not appearing in the other places. If I reset office, will I lose that Misplaced Sections notebook? How do I move the notes from the Misplaced section to a SkyDrive notebook? I don't want to lose those notes!

  • Well, stuff like this happens, guys. (I know - I host public services myself, although on a far smaller scale than you.) Thanks for the heads up and take care!

  • danielgr
    73 Posts

    @Omar said : Starting with the new Hotmail release all albums will go into your /Pictures folder and all document emails will go into your /Documents folder.

    Now, that is really great news... may I ask when is that update coming?

  • abm
    268 Posts

    @Nathan, @CrisLynch

    You can map SkyDrive in Windows Explorer using this address:


    where "your_skydrive_id" is the value of cid in the SkyDrive url which can be obtained when you browse to any of your folder on SkyDrive website (in my case it is 16 digits hexadecimal). After that it would prompt for username and password where you will provide your Widows Live ID.

    Having said that, I believe it would be great if Windows team guys give an explicit option for SkyDrive in map-network-drive setup screen. Also fetching and setting permissions within Explorer would be a great treat!

  • fork
    6 Posts

    What about auto-creating default folder name while its creation?

    In the previous web-version, SkyDrive server suggest names 'New Folder', 'New folder (1)', 'New folder (2)' etc itself.

    Now, when I create a new folder, its name is always the 'New Folder', even such folder already exists.

    It's quite annoyed.

  • @ChrisLynch I would like to have the option to explore Skydrive contents on my Windows Phone (an app for instance), like I do have on computer browser. I guess in nowdays map Skydrive on Windows Explorer is old fashion :)


    Paulo Oliveira.

  • Ok, so I misspoke.  I thought it was syncing Notebooks, not the individual items within the notebook.

  • I didn't have any sync issues what-so-ever, and I didn't change anything on my phone.  I did this URL change happen prior to Wave 5 in any way?  Meaning, did the URL change happen with Wave 4, and anyone syncing since then with WP will not experience this issue?

    Also, I completely agree with Nathan and danielgr suggestions.  I would really love the ability to map a drive in Windows natively to my Skydrive location.

    Has the Skydrive team thought about offering tiered storage capacity offerings (a la or dropbox?)

  • @Ronald: OneNote on your mobile phone will only download or upload the delta of your changes. Additionally, we'll exclude embedded documents and page versions, and will download lower resolution images in an attempt to save bandwidth.  

    Hope this helps!

  • @Seth R thanks. We agree!

  • @Ronald my understanding is that OneNote is syncing deltas.

  • @Thom we are working on outreach right now.

  • @davidacoder yes we do test. There were some particular unique and specific issues about Windows Phone that didn't allow us to test things the exact way that we test everything else. This was just unexpected and something that we missed and realize of course that this is not acceptable and we need to work to prevent this in the future.

    All of us on the team use Windows Phone and OneNote and so we all experienced this problem the day that we released just like everyone else. It was a real bummer.

  • @danielgr you are right. This is not a great workaround. It's the only one we know works right now while we work with the Windows Phone team to address the core issues.

    Thanks for the additional feedback on Groups. Also sorry about all the changes made around default folders over time.

    Starting with the new Hotmail release all albums will go into your /Pictures folder and all document emails will go into your /Documents folder.

  • Seth R
    5 Posts

    Thanks Omar! btw great job to your team on the refreshed SkyDrive. It feels more natural without all the post backs :)

  • Ronald
    22 Posts

    Maybe a bit off-topic (sorry in advance), but i'm curious if OneNote syncing means transferring  the whole file ( to Skydrive and back to your computer / Windows Phone or only syncing the delta (the differences)? I would like to know because i'm on a data plan, and my OneNote file is quite large. I thank you in advance.

  • Thom
    31 Posts

    Amazed this wasn't mentioned elsewhere!

    You need to add this to the SkyDrive & WP7 websites as well as tweet it from all the relevant Microsoft accounts/Facebook pages.

    It also highlights the need for some kind of official alert notification that can be pushed to phones via Microsoft. Maybe via Marketplace updates?

  • How can something like that happen?? Don't you test your updates? If I understand you correctly this affects EVERY Windows Phone user who uses OneNote on the phone, right? Are you seriously telling me that in your test suite there is nothing a la "open a onenote file that is hosted on skydrive on windows phone"??

    I mean, we know Windows Phone isn't really catching on in the market place, but that it even cannot gain enough market share with your testers is quite amusing.

    Workarounds a la email all your files to a different computer, reset (=delete) everything are just unbelievable.

  • Entegy
    42 Posts

    Thanks for the workaround. My syncing is back up and running!

  • danielgr
    73 Posts

    The new update is great but asking users to "reset their app" and "lose their documents" isn't a decent work-around.

    PS: Still waiting for :

    1) The Windows Phone integrate Skydrive Groups... It's so lame that nothing done within a group is accessible through the pictures/Office hubs...

    2) Having a "share folder" accessible from WP7 with "social messenger" feature activated (the day you killed that one was my greatest dissapointment so far with WP7). I don't have facebook and have been using skydrive for years to share my life with my family. Thought WP7 would be ideal for it, then you killed the so much publicized skydrive sharing feat.

    2) Modifications made to group documents to show up on social messenger feed (got broken since past update)

    3) You to clean up the mess in skydrive structure you are introducing with each update.

    - The old skydrive used to have separate root folders for documents, photos, etc.

    - The previous skydrive did away with the Documents and Photos root folders, which now seem to be simple "filters" applied over the root directory where everything is mixed.

    - The new skydrive freely choses docs/pictures according to its own criteria. In my case it seems it believes albums I sent by e-mail are documents, and they show in both pictures & documents views, which is annoying.

    Btw, the ability to move files around is an incredible upgrade, but when your documents get mixed with dozens of photo albums on the root folder it remains a pain (though much better than before). I wished you introduced updates more thoughtfully, instead of the usual "I like some of it but but but but" ones... Power users can handle them, but the mainstream people remains puzzled...

  • Nathan
    63 Posts

    A few suggestions for SkyDrive in:-

    Windows Phone:

    Let the users delete or rename files/folders and create/delete folders on SkyDrive from Windows Phone. (perhaps a native SkyDrive app)

    Windows Explorer:

    Would be great if you guys let the user map their SkyDrive in Windows Explorer via Map Network Drive.

    Windows Live Messenger:

    During the chat on live messenger, in "Share content from the web" under "Your Content" we have the SkyDrive section. Besides pictures, it should enlist all the files including documents (docx, pdf etc) and videos saved on my SkyDrive account other than just pictures.