Basic tasks using a screen reader with OneDrive

Basic tasks using a screen reader with OneDrive

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This article is for people with visual impairments who use a screen reader program with the Office products and is part of the Office Accessibility content set. For more general help, see Office Support home.

Use your keyboard and a screen reader with OneDrive for Windows 10 to store, search for, and share your files across devices. We have tested it with Narrator, but it might work with other screen readers as long as they follow common accessibility standards and techniques.

OneDrive is built into Windows 10 and appears automatically in File Explorer and as a location to save files. Files that you save to OneDrive are available online at OneDrive.com as well as offline on your computer, so you can use them anytime—even when you’re not connected to the Internet. When you reconnect, OneDrive syncs the online files with the files on your computer.

Notes: 

In this topic

Start OneDrive

With Windows 10, you can open OneDrive by using either Cortana or File Explorer. OneDrive opens as a folder in File Explorer.

Open OneDrive using Cortana

  1. To select the Cortana Search bar, press the Windows logo key. You hear: "Search box."

  2. In the Search box, type OneDrive.

  3. When you hear “OneDrive desktop app,” press Enter. OneDrive opens with the focus on the Items view. To move to the folder or file you want, use the Up and Down arrow keys.

Open OneDrive from File Explorer

  1. To open File Explorer, press the Windows logo key+E. File Explorer opens with the focus in the Items view.

  2. Press Shift+F6 to move to the Navigation pane. You hear: "Tree view." Use the arrow keys until you hear “OneDrive,” and then press Enter.

  3. To return to the Items view, press the Tab key.

  4. To move to the folder or file you want, use the arrow keys.

Open an item

In File Explorer, move to the item you want to open, press Spacebar to select it, and then press Enter.

Upload an item to OneDrive

Upload an item from File Explorer

  1. To open File Explorer, press the Windows logo key+E.

  2. Browse to and select the folder or file you want to upload to OneDrive, and press Shift+F10. The Context menu opens, and you hear: “Context menu.”

  3. Press the Up or Down arrow key until you hear: “Move to OneDrive,” and then press Enter. The file is moved to your OneDrive folder in Windows Explorer, and will be uploaded to your OneDrive online.

Save a file directly to OneDrive

When you work on a file in an Office app, you can save it directly to OneDrive, so you don't have to upload it separately.

  1. Open the file you want to upload.

  2. To select the Save As command, press Alt+F, A. You hear: “Save as.”

  3. To select OneDrive, press the Tab key, and then press the Up or Down arrow key until you hear “OneDrive.” Press Enter. You hear: "Pick a folder."

    Tip: If you want to save the file in a specific location within your OneDrive folder, press the Tab key until you hear: "Items." Use the Up and Down arrow keys to browse the folders and files in OneDrive. Press Enter to select the folder you want, and then press Shift+Tab until you hear: "Pick a folder."

  4. To open the Save As dialog, press Enter. The dialog opens with the focus on the File name text field.

  5. Type a name for the file.

  6. To save the file, press the Tab key to move to the Save button, and then press Enter.

Download an item from OneDrive

By default, all items in your OneDrive folder are available both online on the web and offline on your computer, but you can also download an item separately.

  1. In File Explorer, navigate to the item you want to download in your OneDrive. When on the item, press Ctrl+C.

  2. Move to the folder where you want to save the item on your computer, and press Ctrl+V to paste it.

Share an item from OneDrive

Choose from the following scenarios for more information:

Share a view-only link to an item

  1. Select the folder or file you want to share, and then press Shift+F10. The context menu opens, and you hear: “Context menu, Open.”

  2. Press the Down arrow key until you hear “Share a OneDrive link,” and then press Enter. A tool tip opens, and you hear “Your link is ready to paste” or a sound indicating the tool tip pop-up window. A link to your file is added to your clipboard.

  3. To paste the link in a document or message, press Ctrl+V.

Anyone you send this link to will be able to open and view the file.

Customize the sharing link

You can create a sharing link that allows users to edit the file. You can also email the link to specific people.

  1. Select the folder or file you want to share, and then press Shift+F10. The context menu opens, and you hear: “Context menu, Open.”

  2. Press M. You hear: “More OneDrive sharing options.”

  3. Press Enter. OneDrive on the web opens, with the focus in the Share window. You hear “Share” and the name of your file. You may need to sign in to your OneDrive account first.

  4. By default, users with the link can only view the file. To allow users to edit the file, press the Tab key until you hear "Unchecked, Allow editing," and press Spacebar to fill the check box.

    Note: If you do not hear the Allow editing option, press the Tab key until you hear "Anyone with this link can view this item," and then press Enter.

  5. Do one of the following:

    • To copy a link to the file to the clipboard, press the Tab key until you hear “Get a link,” and then press Enter. Press the Tab key to move to the Copy button, and then press Enter.

    • To send an email invitation containing the link to specific people:

      1. Press the Tab key until you hear "Email," and then press Enter.

      2. Type the email address or contact name you want.

        Tip: To add another person, press the Tab key to move out of the text field, and then Shift+Tab to move back in.

      3. Press the Tab key to move to the Add a message here box, and, if you want to, type a message.

      4. Press the Tab key to move to the Share button, and then press Enter.

Anyone you send this link to will be able to open and read the file. They can also edit the file if you have allowed it.

Manage permissions

If you have shared a file or folder with specific people, you can change whether they are permitted to edit the file or folder, or stop sharing it with them.

  1. Select the folder or file you want to share, and then press Shift+F10. The context menu opens, and you hear: “Context menu, Open.”

  2. Press M. You hear: “More OneDrive sharing options.”

  3. Press Enter. OneDrive on the web opens, with the focus in the Share window. You hear “Share” and the name of your file. You may need to sign in to your OneDrive account first.

  4. Press the Tab key until you hear "More," and then press Enter.

  5. Press the Tab key until you hear "Manage permissions," and then press Enter. The Manage Access dialog opens. It lists sharing links you have created for the item, and any people you have shared the item with.

  6. Do one of the following:

    • To stop sharing the item through a sharing link, press the Tab key until you hear the sharing link you want to remove. Press the Tab key again. You hear: "Remove link." Press Enter. To confirm removing the link, in the Remove link dialog, press the Tab key until you hear "Remove link," and then press Enter.

    • To modify permissions for a specific person you have shared the item with, navigate to the list of people. Press the Tab key until you hear "Shared Users list." Use the Up and Down arrow keys to move to the person whose permissions you want to change, press the Tab key, and then press Enter. Use the Up and Down arrow keys to select between "Allow edit," "Change to view only," and "Stop sharing," and then press Enter.

See also

Learn how to navigate OneDrive using accessible features

Keyboard shortcuts in OneDrive app for Windows 10

Use your keyboard and a screen reader with OneDrive in your web browser to store, search for, and share your files across devices. We have tested it with Narrator, but it might work with other screen readers as long as they follow common accessibility standards and techniques. Files that you save to OneDrive are available online at OneDrive.com.

Notes: 

  • New Office 365 features are released gradually to Office 365 subscribers, so your app might not have these features yet. To learn how you can get new features faster, join the Office Insider program.

  • To learn more about screen readers, go to How screen readers work with Microsoft Office.

  • Because OneDrive runs in your web browser, the keyboard shortcuts are different from those in the desktop program. For example, you’ll use Ctrl+F6 instead of F6 for jumping in and out of the commands. Also, common shortcuts like F1 (Help) and Ctrl+O (Open) apply to the web browser – not OneDrive.

In this topic

Start OneDrive

  1. Open your web browser and go to https://onedrive.com.

  2. If you're not already signed in to your Office 365 account (whether through your organization or your Microsoft account), press the Tab key until you hear "Sign in," and press Enter. Sign in to your organization account or Microsoft account.

Upload a file

When you want to save a file from your computer to OneDrive, select the location in OneDrive and then upload it.

  1. With OneDrive open in your web browser, press the Tab key until you hear: “Complementary.”

  2. To move to the side menu, press the Tab key. Press the Down or Up arrow key until you hear "Files," and then press Enter. Be sure nothing is selected in the list of folders and files.

  3. Press Shift+Tab until you hear: “Complementary.” Press the Left or Right arrow key until you hear “Upload,” and then press Enter. You hear: "Files."

  4. To upload a file, press Enter. Press the Tab key until you hear: "Open dialog." To access the file system tree view, press the Tab key until you hear “Tree view.”

  5. To select the folder in which the file is stored on your computer, use the Up and Down arrow keys, and then press Enter.

  6. Press the Tab key once to move to the list of folders and files, and then, use the Down and Up arrow keys to move to the file you want to upload.

    Tip: To select multiple adjacent files, press and hold the Shift key when you select the first file, and then press the Down or Up arrow key until you select the last file. All files between the first and last file are selected.

  7. Press Enter. The selected file or files upload to the location you selected in OneDrive and you hear “Uploaded," the number of items you uploaded, and the upload location.

Download a file

When you want to copy a file from OneDrive to your device, select it in OneDrive and download it.

  1. With OneDrive open in your web browser, press the Tab key until you hear: “Complementary.”

  2. To move to the side menu, press the Tab key. Press the Down or Up arrow key until you hear "Files," and then press Enter.

  3. Press the Tab key until you hear the name of the first folder or file.

  4. Use the Down or Up arrow keys to move to the file you want to download. If you need to navigate into a folder, move to it and then press Enter.

  5. When you have moved to the file you want to download, press Shift+Tab twice to move to the menu bar. You hear: "Complementary.” Press the Right arrow key until you hear “Download,” and then press Enter.

  6. If you hear an alert asking whether you want to download the file, press Alt+N and follow the instructions to save the file. When finished, you hear: “The download has completed.” From this alert, you can navigate to buttons to open the downloaded file, open the folder, or view your downloaded files. To close the alert, press Alt+N again, press the Tab key to move to the Close button, and then press Enter.

Search for a file or folder

  1. In OneDrive, press the Tab key until you hear: "Search box."

  2. Type all or part of the file or folder name you’re looking for. A list opens containing the files or folders which meet your criteria.

  3. Use the Down and Up arrow keys to browse the search results list.

  4. To open a folder or file in the search results list, press Enter. If you opened a file, the file opens in a new tab in your web browser. If an alert opens, press Alt+N and then, to open the folder or file, follow the instructions.

Share a file or folder

  1. With OneDrive open in your web browser, press the Tab key until you hear: “Complementary.”

  2. To move to the side menu, press the Tab key. Press the Down or Up arrow key until you hear "Files," and then press Enter.

  3. Press the Tab key until you hear the name of the first folder or file.

  4. Use the Down or Up arrow keys to move to the file you want to share. If you need to navigate into a folder, move to it and then press Enter.

  5. When you have moved to the file you want to share, press Shift+Tab twice to move to the menu bar. You hear: "Complementary.” Press the Right arrow key until you hear “Share,” and then press Enter.

  6. By default, users with the link can only view the file. To allow users to edit the file, press the Tab key until you hear "Unchecked, Allow editing," and press Spacebar to fill the check box.

    Note: If you do not hear the Allow editing option, press the Tab key until you hear "Anyone with this link can view this item," and then press Enter.

  7. Do one of the following:

    • To copy a link to the file to the clipboard, press the Tab key until you hear “Get a link,” and then press Enter. Press the Tab key to move to the Copy button, and then press Enter.

    • To send an email invitation containing the link to specific people:

      1. Press the Tab key until you hear "Email," and then press Enter.

      2. Type the email address or contact name you want.

        Tip: To add another person, press the Tab key to move out of the text field, and then Shift+Tab to move back in.

      3. Press the Tab key to move to the Add a message here box, and, if you want to, type a message.

      4. Press the Tab key to move to the Share button, and then press Enter.

See also

Keyboard shortcuts in OneDrive for Business on the web

Learn how to navigate OneDrive using accessible features

Technical support for customers with disabilities

Microsoft wants to provide the best possible experience for all our customers. If you have a disability or questions related to accessibility, please contact the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk for technical assistance. The Disability Answer Desk support team is trained in using many popular assistive technologies and can offer assistance in English, Spanish, French, and American Sign Language. Please go to the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk site to find out the contact details for your region.

If you are a government, commercial, or enterprise user, please contact the enterprise Disability Answer Desk.

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