We help IT Professionals succeed at work.
Research Question

set up teams / one drive folder access

Last Modified: 2020-09-11
Hi I hope you are well and thanks in advance for your help.

I am migrating a customer from webdisk (an online file sharing platform) to onedrive/teams/sharepoint (yet to be decided....hence the question) as part of their 365 setup.

they have 6 users. various users need access to various folders and to be denied access to other folders.

Its a fairly simple setup. I don't know which the best route is - I figured just to use one drive but the more i read the more confused i become between which of onedrive/teams/sharepoint  would be best.

what is the best approach please?

Watch Question

John Symeonides1st level support

if you want to have calls between the users so i suggest Microsoft teams

John Symeonides1st level support

I use also Microsoft teams and is very easy,you can text,make calls,make plan and reminders and is also very simple to use Microsoft team on your phone or tablet

Jeff GloverSr. Systems Administrator

First off, it depends on your licensing of course but here is my explanation for what its worth. OneDrive is personal. You can share links to files and folders via email but it is a personal Space. Teams is for a group of users, normally sharing a project of department. It allows for shared files, threaded chat, Meetings, etc... SharePoint is just that, SharePoint. You can easily make a document library and add users to it.
  Now, all I described is SharePoint. OneDrive is a SharePoint Personal SharePoint site. In Teams, when you make a Team, it creates a shared Sharepoint document library. And of course SharePoint is SharePoint.
  For what you need, Teams will not be the ideal way since all users in a team have access to the folders. The way to make it work is if you can divide users into teams who share access rights. But Teams is a great tool also so no matter what you choose, I think Teams is a great addition.  I would say, given what you described with different users being allowed or denied access to different folders,  a SharePoint site is best with Document libraries and permissions. The permissions can be rather granular there


HI Jeff,

thanks for that - ive been plugging away for a while....but only partial joy

what i really want is:

6 folders. everyone has access to 3 of them

various users have access to the other 3.

ive tried setting this up as a 6 channels under one team but:

1) the channels i want to restrict access to  (so set up as private folders) dont show up in sharepoint or one drive
2) the channels set up as standard do show up in sharepoint / one drive but i cant set user permissions on the standard channels (by design by the looks of it....arrgh).

this seems to be a massive pain in the arse - why not just have folders and you can assign whatever user permissions you want to them - rather than having some stuipid " this is for everyone, and it shows up in sharepoint "this isnt for everyone, and it doesnt show up in sharepoint" type division???  sorry, rant over.

anyways.ive also learnt that folders do not show up in one drive until there is at least one file in them. which got me for a while.

i think you are saying that i need to have a team for each set of user restrictions?

i also cant upload a file to the the private channels in the teams app as it says i dont have permission, but i am a member of the channel! is there some permission i am missing somewhere?

i need to upload a shed load of data over the weekend to the folders so i need to get it right! i just need to use it as a nas drive really, with different user permissions on different folders.

Sr. Systems Administrator
This one is on us!
(Get your first solution completely free - no credit card required)


thanks again - im beginning to understand

if i use sharepoint teams site instead of a teams sharepoint site (!) , can these files show up on a mobile app?

Jeff GloverSr. Systems Administrator

There is a SharePoint mobile app that allows access to document libraries. I have an Android and it is available in the Play store. I imagine it is in the Apple store also.


ok, but then you have a teams app and a sharepoint app on the phone that dont talk to each other?


just incase this helps anyone else - the "i also cant upload a file to the the private channels in the teams app as it says i dont have permission, but i am a member of the channel! is there some permission i am missing somewhere?" is solved by.....the owner of the channel placing a document in the folder, using the web app or the teams app. if there are zero documents in the folder, you get a permissions error if you are a member but not the owner. i mean jesus christ! really MS???
Jeff GloverSr. Systems Administrator

So, Teams is Teams. It lets you chat and view your teams. the SharePoint app should give you access to SharePoint, your teams SharePoint sites and even your OneDrive Documents.


ok, got it. thanks, you have been really helpfull. i think though it might be easier for me to set up 6 teams? then all we have to deal with is teams.  

i can set up a team for each folder and restict access to the folder in it by dint of the members?
Jeff GloverSr. Systems Administrator

It is really up to you. I work with the whole Microsoft 365 suite so I am familiar with all the parts but if it is easier for you to do it just in Teams, go for it.


fair enough. im just trying to keep it super simple. ive never used share point before.  i want to end up like this in the video here, where one drive locally stores all the files from teams, so the users just see what looks like a mapped drive.  i can also then have a onedrive client on a spare pc that can locally sync all the data within teams which we can then back up to an external usb drive. then we have a local backup and secondary off site backup so we are golden..


thanks for all your help, you've been tremendous.


so, for the record....here's what i had to do:

give teams roles to admin account in azure AD

make teams, set permissions in teams.

get files to one drive from the old server pc

in order to achieve the followoing and also have an admin account back everything up to a local pc
File Server to Microsoft Teams Files Migration with Demos - YouTube 

Gain unlimited access to on-demand training courses with an Experts Exchange subscription.

Get Access
Why Experts Exchange?

Experts Exchange always has the answer, or at the least points me in the correct direction! It is like having another employee that is extremely experienced.

Jim Murphy
Programmer at Smart IT Solutions

When asked, what has been your best career decision?

Deciding to stick with EE.

Mohamed Asif
Technical Department Head

Being involved with EE helped me to grow personally and professionally.

Carl Webster
CTP, Sr Infrastructure Consultant
Empower Your Career
Did You Know?

We've partnered with two important charities to provide clean water and computer science education to those who need it most. READ MORE

Ask ANY Question

Connect with Certified Experts to gain insight and support on specific technology challenges including:

  • Troubleshooting
  • Research
  • Professional Opinions
Unlock the solution to this question.
Join our community and discover your potential

Experts Exchange is the only place where you can interact directly with leading experts in the technology field. Become a member today and access the collective knowledge of thousands of technology experts.

*This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.


Please enter a first name

Please enter a last name

8+ characters (letters, numbers, and a symbol)

By clicking, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.