There are all kinds of data that is handled and stored by Microsoft 365 (formerly Office 365) products from emails, files & documents, SharePoint lists and sites’ content, MS Teams’ conversations and MS Stream’s videos.
So, where / how do these Microsoft 365 (formerly Office 365) products (Outlook-Exchange Online / SharePoint Online / OneDrive for Business (OD4B) / Teams / Stream / Yammer…) Store Files/Data?
Microsoft 365 (formerly Office 365) safely encrypts and stores customers’ data on Azure Storage in one of Microsoft’s data centers in the region that is mentioned in the tenant’s organization profile (in the admin center, a global admin account is needed for this): Admin Center > Settings > Organization Profile > Data Location > View Details, although a copy of some of it is stored locally on the customer’s device. Below a table that summarizes how each O365 product actually handles the storage of each content/data type:
You can play most audio and video files, including mp4, Apple and QuickTime movie files directly from the OneDrive website. Supported audio and video formats in OneDrive. The following audio/video files can be played directly from your OneDrive in most browsers: 3G2, 3GP, ASF, BMP, M2TS, M4V, MOV, MP3, MP4, MP4V, MTS, TS, WMV. The video file will now begin to download. Step 3: Go to Chrome’s Downloads tab and pause the download. Then copy the download link from the Right-Click/ Context Menu. Step 4: Now open VLC and in the file menu, choose “Open Network Stream.” Paste the download link into the URL box and hit play. Google Drive File Stream will open, and you should see the following window. In Google Drive File Stream, click on the right-pointing arrow until you see Open Explorer. (Each window to which you navigate provides a feature of Google Drive File Stream.).
Microsoft 365 Products’ Data storage in Detail:
When you set up your email account in Outlook, a local copy of your information (profile settings + mailbox content & metadata) is stored on your computer. This is to allow you access to your previously downloaded or synchronized email messages, calendar information, contacts, and tasks without an internet connection.
Certain types of accounts, such as POP accounts, store their information in Outlook Data Files (.pst files). Outlook 365 accounts, Exchange accounts, IMAP accounts, and Outlook.com accounts store their information in Offline Outlook Data Files (.ost files), Although you still export your data in this case in .pst files for backup or to import it elsewhere (.ost files data can’t be imported or backed up).
There is another type of files .nst (Outlook Group Storage File), used only when you access a group in your outlook, and just like .ost files, .nst files are constantly being synchronized with the mail server, so there is no need to back them up or import them (if you are setting up a new installation of outlook on a new computer). For more details, visit Microsoft’s own documentation.
On the server side however, Exchange Online (the mail server) uses an Exchange Database file (an .edb file) to store all data related to your accounts.
SharePoint Online uses multiple SQL databases (called content databases), to store customers’ data (sites content, list item, files and document, in addition to metadata) on Azure Storage in a safe and encrypted manner.
When you upload a file to SharePoint, that file gets disassembled and stored across different tables of the content databases mentioned earlier in an application code.
So basically, the program stores data as an abstracted code that is encrypted and broken down to be stored in various storage devices in the data center. All that data is mirrored / backed up in at least one other data center (mostly within the same region) to ensure the high availability / recover-ability in case of a disaster or in case you request its restoration after an accidental deletion of content on your part (but before the recovery period ends, more on that subject here).
OneDrive for Business
OD4B uses SharePoint Online behind the scenes on the server side to handle file and document storage. So, your data exists on SharePoint content databases as described in the previous paragraph, in addition to the OneDrive Folder on your local machine that contains the synced files.
Microsoft built an entirely new Azure Service to handle MS Stream functionality & data. That service stores the videos and their metadata using a variety of Azure SQL tables, Blobs and Azure media services.
Yammer’s connected groups use SharePoint to store the shared files and documents (since July 2019), meaning that they end up in SharePoint’s content databases as described in the SharePoint Online paragraph above.
As of the writing of this article, Yammer continues to use its own cloud services for storing the rest of its data (other than files shared in connected groups as stated earlier).
I left MS Teams for last, since the way it handles the storage of customers’ data is a bit more complicated than the previous ones, because as you may have noticed, Teams is heavily integrated with many of the other products.
So, there are some items (such as chat conversations and images shared during those conversations…) where MS Teams uses specific Azure blob, SQL tables, and queue storage (collectively known as the MS Teams Substrate).
As for the other items: the files are stored in SharePoint and OD4B, and meeting recordings are stored in MS Stream, all of which in turn use Azure storage. To support eDiscovery, copies of conversations and chat messages are copied to Exchange Online, which also uses Azure storage.
The table below provides a full picture of how the storage of each item is handled (credits to this article for this table):
Security & Data Residency in Microsoft 365
Any tech giant delivering public cloud services on a large scale (and Microsoft is right there at the top with Amazon), can make investments in security on behalf of many customers, and as a result, can provide higher levels of service & security than any one customer could ever do on their own.
As to large multinational corporations, It is impossible for Microsoft 365 to guarantee data residency in every country that your corporation operates in (at least not at the moment of writing this article). So, unless data residency in your case is mandatory due to regulation or to a binding client contract, the case can be made that your data would actually be better managed and more secure on Microsoft 365 (formerly Office 365) and on Microsoft’s cloud storage.-->
Uploading videos with Microsoft Stream is easy and anyone can do it.
Start uploading videos
Click the Upload icon at the top of any page or just drag and drop new videos to one of your groups or channels. You can upload multiple videos at the same time and even browse Microsoft Stream while your videos are uploading in the background.
There are several options for uploading videos. Depending on where you start your uploads from, different default permissions will be set on the videos, but you can always change them afterwards.
See this article for in-depth information on video permissions.
Upload from any page
To upload from any page:
In the Microsoft Stream portal, select Create > Upload a video or the upload icon from the top navigation bar
Drag and drop or select files from your computer or device.
To upload from Videos page:
In the Microsoft Stream portal, select My content > Videos from the top navigation bar
Drag and drop or select files from your computer or device
Upload directly to a group or channel
To upload to a group:
In the Microsoft Stream website, navigate to a group that you can contribute to
Select the Upload video button on the group's navigation bar or drag and drop videos when on the group's Highlights or Videos tab
Run Google Drive File Stream
To upload to a channel:
In the Microsoft Stream website, navigate to a channel that you can contribute to
Click Select more files or drag and drop videos directly to the channel page
While your video is uploading and processing, you can fill out metadata for the video to make it easier to find.
Title & Description
Fill out the title and description for your video to give your viewers context for the video. In the description field, you can add the following to make your video more interactive:
Time codes (H:MM:SS) - You can build an interactive table of contents for the video by typing in the time codes of interesting points in the video. Viewers will be able to click on these time codes to jump to that point of the video.
#Hashtags - Add #hashtags to your video description as a lightweight community way to group similar videos together. Viewers will be able to click on the #hashtags and see other videos with the same tag.
Links - Paste in a web address in the description and viewers will be able to click the link to open your address in a new page when viewing the video.
The title is limited to 100 characters. The description is limited to 4,000 characters.
Select the language spoken in the video. This will enable a closed caption file for supported languages to be automatically generated. In addition, people with the correct license will be able to discover your video based on the text in this transcript.
For more information see:
Automatic thumbnails are generated for the video after it's uploaded. When the frames from the video are generated, choose one to represent your video or upload your own custom image.
In the permissions section, you can control who can see your video, who can own and edit it, and which groups and channels it’s displayed in.
See this article for more in-depth information on video permissions.
Allow everyone in your company to view this video
When checked everyone in your organization can see the video and is able to add it to their groups and channels. This, in effect, makes your video available for viewing companywide. To be able to add a video to a companywide channel, this check box must be checked.
When not checked, your video will only be viewable by those people and groups you've made viewers.
Use the Shared with drop down to narrow your search scope and pick who you want to share your video with.
Groups - search scope to add your video to a group that you can contribute to.
Channels - search scope to add your video to a channel directly, including companywide channels.
People - search scope to grant permission to individual people, AD Security Groups, and/or Microsoft 365 Groups that you don't have contribute rights to.
Any person or group added will automatically be granted view permission to your video. If you want any of these Viewers to also be able to update your video, check the box next to their entry in the Owner column to upgrade their permission.
The Display check box shows up for groups where you are a contributor. This controls if the video shows up in the group's pages in Stream. If it's not checked it means that the group has access if you send them a link or they found the video in search, but it won't show up on their group's pages directly.
For more information about permissions, see Video permissions.
In the Options section, you can control various settings for the video.
If you don't want users to be able to add comments directly on the video player page, set Comments to Off.
Closed captions are a text version, in the original language, of what's spoken in the video. When a video has a caption set, viewers can click the CC button on the player while watching a video to show the captions under the video.
If you've selected a supported Video language in the Details pane for the video, then the Autogenerate a caption file check box will be checked. This means a caption file will be automatically generated. In addition, people with the correct license will be able to discover your video based on the text in this transcript or your own uploaded closed caption file.
If you deselect the box, Autogenerate a caption file, then you can upload your own closed caption file in the WebVTT format.
For more information about captions, see:
Drive File Stream Download
Subtitles are a text version, translated into different languages, of what's spoken in the video. When a video has one or more subtitles set, viewers can enable the the subtitles on the player while watching the video.
To upload one subtitle file per language:
Can You Stream From Onedrive
- Click Upload a subtitle file
- Select the language the subtitle file is for
- Click Select file or drag and drop your subtitle file in the WebVTT format
- Select OK
For more information, see the subtitle and captions article
Publish and playback
Once your video has been uploaded, and you are done setting up your video, you can press the Publish now button at the bottom of the upload card. This will make the video available to those you've shared it with as soon as it's done processing. Press the title of the video on the top of the upload card to see the playback page for the video.
Onedrive File Stream Mac
To modify anything about the video after you've published it, go to My content > Videos > More menu > Edit.
Processing time is based on the length and resolution of your video. You won't be able to play the video until it's done processing. See upload processing details for more information.
Select the Share icon on the bottom of the upload card to copy a link to the video, share on Yammer, or get the embed code for the video. For more information, see Sharing a video.
Supported upload formats
See supported file formats for more information on what kinds of videos can be uploaded.
Quotas and limitations
See upload quotas and limitations for more information on video, user, and company limits.
Drive File Stream Shared Drive
For common upload errors, see Understanding upload errors.