avatar image

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
  • Friday July 12, 2024, 2:04 pm
  • Proudly celebrating 15+ years online.
  • Donate now to become a lifetime supporting member of the site and get a non-expiring license key for all of our programs.
  • donate

Last post Author Topic: OneNote is now free  (Read 24223 times)


  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 7,543
  • @Slartibartfarst
    • View Profile
    • Read more about this member.
    • Donate to Member
Re: OneNote is now free
« Reply #25 on: February 18, 2015, 09:18 AM »
@Steven Avery:
The best and most cost-effective way way I have found to move from OneNote 2007 to the 2013 version is to install MS Office under the corporate Home Use programme (PAID $10).
  • Ensure that ON2013 is installed with a focus on client-based Notebooks.
  • Then migrate (convert) all your ON2007 Notebooks to ON2013 format (this was a trivial exercise).
  • Then, if you want, using ON functionality, move your ON2013 Notebooks to OneDrive. ON does this all automatically and you can forget about it once it has completed.

However, there are two potential drawbacks to the last step:
  • 1. Issues with WDS (Windows Desktop Search): WDS does not search/index OneDrive, so WDS does not index the Cloud-based OneNote Notebook content. However WDS will find a search term in ON cache files, but the search connectors do not take you to the ON Notebook and page where your search term could be found, so all you know is that you will need to open and search all ON Notebooks to find that content. I have experienced this problem myself, and it has made be consider moving the Notebooks back to the client. I haven't made my mind up yet as there are various Pros and Cons to consider.

  • 2. Offline access to Online content: I think that one might at some point be unable to access content in any Cloud-based ON Notebooks when one is offline for an extended period. The local ON cache files will be used where possible, but not all the Notebook content is necessarily replicated on the Client. I have not yet experienced this problem.


  • Participant
  • Joined in 2013
  • *
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 116
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: OneNote is now free
« Reply #26 on: February 18, 2015, 09:56 AM »
From "Posted by Stephen R. Diamond - Feb 16, 2015 at 02:47 AM - They’re being incredibly stingy with their “free” version: They still don’t allow it to open new notebooks except on OneDrive."

Being on XP (on which ON 2013 does not run), I cannot confirm, but this seems to be VERY important information.

I've got ON 2003, together with a pc, and ON 2003 is shit; deinstalled it almost immediately. On the other hand, more recent versions seem to have been MUCH better, at least in some respects: It's been told that ON's capabilities re audio/video and, more important for most users, re text recognition / ocr, are outstanding, or to be more precise, are comparable with those of EverNote only, with which (to a lesser degree in the case of ON) it shares the incredible "flatness" of possible IM.

Now you know there are dozens of traditional, so-called "2-pane" outliners, which all LACK these functionalities, and as for EN, at least, it's known that there are MILLIONS of paying users, ON being a program that will probably be paid for by 95 or more p.c. of its customers by buying some "Office" package in which ON is same part (whilst Outlook is not, indicating that MS seems to have given up trying to sell OL to the non-corporate clientele (since the price for OL alone is outrageous).

On the other hand, all those traditional 2-pane outliners combined are sold perhaps at some 20,000 or 30,000 pieces (make it 50,000 if you want, nobody knows, I'm extrapolating from the reach of their respective fora (or lack of such)), compared with the millions of sw copies MS and EN have brought to people in need of some "outlining" / basic IM for web snippets and all that.

Also, there is the aspect of some traditional outliners, and then ON, too (? - but not EN?), INDEXING EXTERNAL pdf's, Word files and such, which is obviously a VERY important aspect in all this (but which curiously does not bring THAT many customers to traditional outliner makes that offer that feature).

Now again, from the above, I had been musing in the past already to what degree a REALLY FREE ON would have impact on the outliner market as a whole: Judging from the success of EN, and from the above-mentioned superiority of both EN and ON in some respects over their more traditional competitors, the WORST is to be feared for traditional outliners, which will have simply be LEFT BEHIND by EN / ON, and the fact that neither of those offers "real hierarchy" (i.e. ON's hierarchical storage is awkward and rather flat, whilst any hierarchy in EN is simply inexistant (from what I've been explained)) does not have been a real obstacle to either EN (for which that's a proven fact) or ON (where it's always been fascinating to see that MS "has" (???) to give away ON for free, whilst they NEVER give anything for free whenever they are able to make some bucks with/out of it). (To TRY to explain this a little better, you could assume that EN is consistent in their abolition of hierarchical storage, where ON tries to "serve both worlds", i.e. flat, AND "deep" information structuring, and hence (and obviously, cf. their giving it away) much less convincing).

All this said, there's another factor playing here that cannot be underestimated: Whilst many people now judge ON sort of a "Trojan horse" or at least don't like the idea they don't have their things on their own hdd anymore, EN's success clearly shows that for any man or woman thinking along these lines, there are 200 or 500 letting go of it, and being quite happy with web-based-only/or-primarily* storage...

* = your working files in the web, with perhaps some backup even on your hdd

... which would better explain WHY MS just SEEMS to repeat their previous mistakes: Not making available ON-free-version, even by option, for exclusive-use-on-hdd, does NOT seem to cut them off from that many possible users indeed, in light of the above. (Note that most traditional outliners do NOT offer web / group functionality, which may have been deeply cutting into their sales figures for quite some time now.)

And yes, it's perfectly possible for MS to PUT AN END, ANYTIME, to ON-web being free. I'm not alleging they would then steal your data; in fact they would never do such a primitive thing. But they will get you into some sort of "subscription", even for ON, when time is ripe for them to do so, and be it "just" by linking ON to some "superior-value" subscription, i.e. ON not being contended within the lesser, "basic" ones - as for your data, it will forever stay available in "reading mode", and even will stay "exportable" (in some quite basic formats you'll be certain to not fall in love with, be assured); thus, ON-free users will subscribe the needed subscriptions in order for ON "actively" staying available.

Whatever, MS killed quite SOME superior sw makes, or then simply bought them, too (Visio), and traditional outliners seem to be quite doomed indeed... as I have said some time ago over at but with MS' latest moves re ON, their willingness to overtake that outline market, too, has become even more evident than it had been before.

It'll be of quite some interest to see if they try to follow EN's concept of being totally flat (before trying to kill EN, that is, and that goes without saying), or if they offer some more depth than than they currently do, and then, in which way they will bring that to us (since they are smart enough in order to have "checked" that their current, hybrid outlining structure isn't that well received by anybody, and harms their overtaking the market).

(Over there at, they censor any try to look ahead or look beyond the obvious, thus I dare annoy fellow readers here on DC with such musings, but I promise I'll only do it here and there and in the appropriate threads, not willy-nilly. Also, a classic afterwit, but it's really spot-on, onto those and onto such people, see my new motto over here; no pun intended to fellow readers, or only some of them, speaking of a minimal minority here.)
When the wise points to the moon, the moron just looks at his pointer. China.

Steven Avery

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 1,038
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: OneNote is now free
« Reply #27 on: February 19, 2015, 03:10 AM »
If Onenote with desktop functionality was a $49 program, with upgrades every couple of years, I would be very interested.

While OCR (I use Abbyy screenshot reader) and audio integration are nice techie things, I like the rectangle format, eliminating white space.  For me this is the feature that could make it happier than other programs like Rightnote.  Since, so far, I have only found that function in Notezilla in the desktop programs.  (However, for that to have full functionality, the rectangle should be optionally boxed and/or colored.)

I agree that the current situation is somewhat convoluted.  

Am I supposed to fake out as a corporate user?   While I am affiliated with some companies that have some Microsoft products, the actual license very possibly would not apply, by the letter of the letter.  Anyway, I am tempted to go that route, to use the latest desktop version, but I have 2007 anyway, but only on my main PC.  Convoluted to the max.

The problems you say above apply.  Plus I like desktop assess.  Its quicker and always with the puter, even while driving on Amtrack! The programs are better.


Some of the cloud complications.

And I am a big fan of a non-hierarchical approach for bookmarks (Linkman).  However, I have never understood trying to use a mass of glob of notes in that manners.