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OneNote Page Versions

    Question

  • How many page versions does OneNote keep? Is there a way to change the setting? I'm wondering if OneNote keeps a certain number of versions or specific time period (e.g. the last 6 months). I can't seem to find any documentation on this. I'm also wondering when the versions are recorded. How many versions per day (seems to be once per day by default), and what time of day is the version from?
    Monday, January 23, 2012 3:00 PM

Answers

  • Hello,

    I apologize, I misunderstood your question. I believe I have collected the information you are looking for.

     

    I’ll break this into two parts.

     

    #1) When are versions created?

    We create a new version any time a change is made to a page and either a) the author is different from the last change, or b) it’s been an hour since the last version we pinned.

    The version we pin is a view of the page from right before the change was made. Thus, if Bob makes a change, and then Suzy does 10 minutes later, the page as Bob last left it will be saved as a version by Suzy’s change. If Suzy makes successive changes every 10 minutes for the next 2 hours, we’ll create a version before the first, 7th and 13th changes (i.e. at the 0-, 1- and 2-hour marks).

     

    Version history can be turned off, so that no versions get created in the first place. Doing this after versions are pinned doesn’t delete existing versions unless you ask it to.

     

    #2) How long do we keep them?

    Every time we create a new version, we review the existing versions to see if any should be pruned. The default pruning rules are:

    · We keep all of the changes for the first 2 days.

    · Older than that, we remove all but the first from any 1-hour period for the next 5 days.

    · Older than that, we remove all but the first from any 1-day period, for up to 10 unique days.

    · After all of the above, we delete all versions.

    All three of those numbers (2, 5 and 10) are all customizable by policy.

    Furthermore, there are two more settings that can be changed.

    · Version pruning can be turned on or off globally.

    · A fourth number can be set which is the age (in days) after which any version will be pruned, regardless of the other rules. By default, this is -1 (off).

    Regardless of what numbers are plugged in, versions are only pruned when either a new version is being created, or when the containing notebook is being optimized.

     

    I hope this information answers your questions.

     

    Thanks,

    Ross


    Ross - Sr. Support Engineer Microsoft Office
    Wednesday, February 1, 2012 9:49 PM

All replies

  • Hi,

    This is a quick note to let you know that we are performing research on this issue.

    Sincerely,

    Max Meng
    Forum Support


    Come back and mark the replies as answers if they help and unmark them if they provide no help.
    If you have any feedback on our support, please contact tnmff@microsoft.com.

    Tuesday, January 24, 2012 4:26 AM
    Moderator
  • Hi rj_shadow,

    My name is Ross and I am a Support Engineer for Microsoft OneNote. If you click File | Options | Save & Backup, you can select the number of backup copies to keep, as well as how often you would like the backup to run. The backup copies themselves, are by default saved in C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\OneNote\14.0\Backup\

    Thanks,

    Ross


    Ross - Sr. Support Engineer Microsoft Office
    Wednesday, January 25, 2012 5:17 PM
  • The backup appears to be different than the version setting though. My backup is set to keep 2 copies, yet I have some pages with 13 versions. This is the same for everyone I know that uses OneNote, so it's not just me.
    Wednesday, January 25, 2012 5:23 PM
  • Hello,

    I apologize, I misunderstood your question. I believe I have collected the information you are looking for.

     

    I’ll break this into two parts.

     

    #1) When are versions created?

    We create a new version any time a change is made to a page and either a) the author is different from the last change, or b) it’s been an hour since the last version we pinned.

    The version we pin is a view of the page from right before the change was made. Thus, if Bob makes a change, and then Suzy does 10 minutes later, the page as Bob last left it will be saved as a version by Suzy’s change. If Suzy makes successive changes every 10 minutes for the next 2 hours, we’ll create a version before the first, 7th and 13th changes (i.e. at the 0-, 1- and 2-hour marks).

     

    Version history can be turned off, so that no versions get created in the first place. Doing this after versions are pinned doesn’t delete existing versions unless you ask it to.

     

    #2) How long do we keep them?

    Every time we create a new version, we review the existing versions to see if any should be pruned. The default pruning rules are:

    · We keep all of the changes for the first 2 days.

    · Older than that, we remove all but the first from any 1-hour period for the next 5 days.

    · Older than that, we remove all but the first from any 1-day period, for up to 10 unique days.

    · After all of the above, we delete all versions.

    All three of those numbers (2, 5 and 10) are all customizable by policy.

    Furthermore, there are two more settings that can be changed.

    · Version pruning can be turned on or off globally.

    · A fourth number can be set which is the age (in days) after which any version will be pruned, regardless of the other rules. By default, this is -1 (off).

    Regardless of what numbers are plugged in, versions are only pruned when either a new version is being created, or when the containing notebook is being optimized.

     

    I hope this information answers your questions.

     

    Thanks,

    Ross


    Ross - Sr. Support Engineer Microsoft Office
    Wednesday, February 1, 2012 9:49 PM
  • Yes, that's exactly what I'm looking for, thanks.
    Wednesday, February 1, 2012 10:01 PM
  • Hi Ross

    This is a great answer but could you please expand on

    "

    All three of those numbers (2, 5 and 10) are all customizable by policy.

    Furthermore, there are two more settings that can be changed.

    · Version pruning can be turned on or off globally.

    · A fourth number can be set which is the age (in days) after which any version will be pruned, regardless of the other rules. By default, this is -1 (off).

    "

    Where are these customisable (I can't find them in Options) and how are they set?

    Thanks

    Thursday, May 24, 2012 10:22 AM
  • Hi Keith,

    They are customizable in the Office 2010 Administrative template for use via Group Policy.

    http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?displaylang=en&id=18968

    If you download the file Office2010GroupPolicyAndOCTSettings_Reference.xls, it describes the different policies you can set, as well as the registry keys that are set and changed for the different policies. These policies are located in the template under Current User | Microsoft OneNote 2010 | OneNote Options | Versions and Recycle Bin. There it lists the registry location as well as the registy key to add to customize these settings.

    Thanks,

    Ross

       

    Ross - Sr. Support Engineer Microsoft Office

    Thursday, May 24, 2012 8:40 PM
  • Hi Ross, or anyone - this covers Group Policy. How about where GPO is not actively used - eg. local user. Can we define these?

    Also, can you clarify:


    · After all of the above, we delete all versions.
    vs
    · A fourth number can be set which is the age (in days) after which any version will be pruned, regardless of the other rules. By default, this is -1 (off).

    So - So - in a default installation, will all versions be deleted eventually? How can I retain all versions?

    T

    Thanks!

    Damo


    Tuesday, July 9, 2013 9:42 PM
  • I would like to know the same thing as Damo Skess!

    Thanks in advance

    - Rikke



    Monday, August 18, 2014 12:26 PM
  • Any idea where these are in the registry for OneNote 2013?

    According to This Threadthey should be in HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\OneNote\Options\Versions; of course for OneNote 2013 the expected analog would be HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Office\15.0\OneNote\Options\Versions.  However, there is no "Versions" key.  Is that to be expected?  Do we need to create a Versions key, and add each values (i.e. PruneVersionsOverTime, DaysOfHourlyVersions, etc)?

    I would've expected to see some default values there, which is why I wanted to make sure...




    • Edited by Metal450 Friday, March 27, 2015 11:52 PM
    Friday, March 27, 2015 11:49 PM
  • Ross,

    You say "· Version pruning can be turned on or off globally.", but I can't find any documentation on how to do this. Can you point me in the right direction?

    Thanks,

    Bruce

    Tuesday, November 10, 2015 12:14 PM
  • Great answer.

    My question is "How do I view the hourly versions?"

    When I select History-Page Versions I only see the daily versions. I am running OneNote 2016 on Windows 7.

    Thanks.

    Friday, May 6, 2016 6:27 PM