What happens to a user's OneDrive when they are disabled?

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Hi all, as the title says: What happens to a user's OneDrive when they are disabled?

Background: when we off-board our departing/departed users, we disable the AD account, convert the mailbox to a shared mailbox, and remove the Office365 E# license. We never delete the accounts.

We know that if we delete the account, it follows the O365 OneDrive deleted user retention policy (default 30 days, not sure of the upper limit).

We're starting to utilize OneDrive more, and the question has been raised about how our process would be affected by Office365? With the removal of the O365 E# license, technically, the account isn't entitled to OneDrive anymore, but I really doubt that MS has some process that deletes the files. But what does happen? Considering that the user becomes a blocked user, does the OneDrive effectively become frozen, with O365 admins granting access to the files, but the disabled user's OneDrive not allowed to increase in size? Thus, with our policy of never deleting users, are we just effectively "forever archiving" their OneDrive?
Thanks.

4 Replies
They will be deleted. What you’ll want to do is go into onedrive admin and set the preserve files for x days. I can’t recall exactly where it is but there isn’t that many options in there. After setting this the onedrive will stay until then. I have it set to something like 7 years. This will keep the data without deleting and without needing a license.

If you want further protection you’ll have to add retention policies to it for keeping changes etc.

No automatic deletion will be triggered (this only happens when the account is marked for deletion, as detailed here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/onedrive/retention-and-deletion). And I'm pretty sure that puts you in unsupported configuration/violation of the license terms, but that's for Microsoft to clarify, so best contact them.

We follow a similar termination process (though we don't convert to shared mailboxes). We just disable everything and remove all licenses for 6 months before deleting. Does anyone know what happens to *shared file links* to a disabled account? I assume they become unusable, but can anyone confirm?
This is kind of old now, but we just renamed some disabled users and then we got some incidents of users not being able to access what the disabled user previously shared.
So no, sharing internal is not stopped by disabling users.
I don't know about external sharing but we are about to test it
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