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Usually, you see features and advantages of SharePoint. In this article, you will read about a few limitations of SharePoint that you should understand to improve the accuracy of SharePoint online.

Knowing about these limitations will improve your skills and lets you understand what you need to be aware of while migrating files or performing shares in SharePoint Online.

So, this article discusses the top limitations you should be aware  of SharePoint online. SharePoint has various limitations and knowing them will help us to use it with full potential. This might be something you have come across while working or you haven’t heard of. So, let’s dive in.

Huge Number of Items in a Document Library

In the past, exceeding 5,000 items in a library,  almost became unusable. With the modern improvements and modern document library and auto-indexing, now you can store more than 5,000 items. Large numbers of items in the library encounter performance issues, slow library or unable to sync with OneDrive.

It also ends up in failing to perform certain operations, like setting up permissions, renaming a file, moving or copying multiple files.  Time will fly by if you sync these large libraries to your computer.

How to Ease

Never fill up more than 20k-30k files and folders into a single library.

Avoid creating a large number of libraries inside other libraries and filling up contents.

Create multiple libraries and spread the content over multiple sites and libraries.

400 Character URL Limit

When users migrate or share files to SharePoint Online, multiple layers of folders are created. As you create multiple folders and subfolders in a document library the URL path to the content becomes longer and longer. The limit for the relative URL in SharePoint online is 400 characters. Once you exceed the limit you will start getting the error messages.

The 400-character URL limit is applicable to the relative path of your folders or documents. The character limit includes the length of your document library name, folders, and the file. It does not count the characters in the site URL itself.

For example, if your site URL is, which has a folder called “Documents” in it, just the cumulative length of the folder path/Documents counts towards the 400-character limit. The URL of the site itself does not count to the limit. So even if you have a very long site name, you don’t have to bother.

How to Ease

Choose short names for document libraries

Remove multiple layers of folders, instead create multiple libraries and spread the content

Change the length of the folder and file names

Use metadata when possible

Sync Limit on OneDrive Sync

The number of documents you can sync using OneDrive sync is 300,000. In order to make files more reliable users are forced to sync data within their One Drive.

According to Microsoft, this limit cannot exceed 300,000 across all locations being synched. To make it more accurate this is the recommended limit. The OneDrive wheel spinning all the time and not able to finish the sync.

The Files might not get synced to SharePoint and to OneDrive. This is very common while syncing hundreds of thousands of files across many SharePoint sites/libraries.

How to Ease

Know more about the OneDrive limit

Avoid syncing very large document libraries

Recycle Bin Limit 93 Days

The deleted documents and other contents all end up in the Recycle Bin. By default, for SharePoint, you can recover content from there before 93 days.

There are  no default backup solutions available in SharePoint Online/Office 365 after 93 days. The only thing you can do is constantly check the recycle bin whenever possible.

You cannot recover the content they deleted by accident 4 months ago.

How to Ease

Always check the recycle bin if possible.

Consider setting up Retention Policies for your content.

Check for backup alternatives before deletion.

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