New OneDrive File Viewer Shows Up In Teams

Greater Fidelity and Ability to Work with Content

The original file viewing capability in the Teams desktop and browser client was relatively basic. To improve the situation, Microsoft is rolling out a set of new file viewers for OneDrive for Business, SharePoint Online, and Teams. The OneDrive for Business development group leads this work to build out the number of supported file types (now over 300 and growing).

A picture tells the story better than words. Teams uses file viewers to display content when users click on documents in the Files channel tab. Figure 1 shows Teams displaying a PowerShell script that I uploaded to a SharePoint document library. The file is simple text, but the viewer is intelligent enough to understand the .PS1 extension and highlight different elements of the script. You can’t edit PowerShell scripts through the viewer.

PowerShell script viewed in Teams
Figure 1: PowerShell script viewed in Teams

Viewing and Editing Office Documents

Because the viewer launches the online version of the Office apps, you can edit Office documents in the viewer. Figure 2 shows a Word document being edited. This replaces the previous options to edit in Teams or edit online. If the desktop version of the app is available, you can choose to open the file in that.

Editing Word in the Teams viewer
Figure 2: Editing Word in the Teams viewer

The new viewers make it easier to work with documents in Teams. However, when working with documents in Teams, you work with online files stored in SharePoint. Often it’s easier to synchronize the document libraries belonging to a team with the OneDrive client and work with local copies of the files. If you’re traveling and have to deal with flaky Wi-Fi networks, local copies are the only way to go…

For more information about working with Teams, read the Office 365 for IT Pros eBook. It’s packed full of useful information!

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