Overview of Microsoft 365 Archive


This feature is now generally available. It is currently rolling out and might not yet be fully available to all organizations.

Microsoft 365 Archive offers cost-effective storage for inactive SharePoint sites.

Your organization might need to keep inactive or aging data for long periods of time in case you need to retrieve it later. You might prefer to store the data in SharePoint to simplify searchability, security, compliance, and data lifecycle management.

Microsoft 365 Archive allows you to retain this inactive data by moving it into a cold storage tier (archive) within SharePoint. Any data archived with Microsoft 365 Archive will have the same searchability, security, and compliance standards applied automatically at a much reduced cost.

Some additional advantages of using Microsoft 365 Archive are:

  • Speed – Ultra-fast archive of sites of any size and any number of sites.

  • Cost savings – A lower list price on storage consumption beyond your license-allocated Microsoft 365 storage quota.

  • Lossless metadata – A site will retain all of its metadata and permissions upon reactivation.

  • Decluttering – Explicit separation between active and inactive content to help you manage your site's lifecycle.

Microsoft 365 Archive, coupled with the Microsoft 365 search index and the Microsoft Purview feature set, provides a powerful combination for your long-term data management needs at a price point that matches the lifecycle of your content. Microsoft 365 Archive is controlled in the SharePoint admin center by global or SharePoint admins.

When a site is archived, it goes into an explicitly colder tier, no longer consumes a tenant’s active storage quota, and instead drives Microsoft 365 Archive storage consumption. Being in this colder tier means the site is no longer accessible by anyone in the organization outside of Microsoft Purview or admin search.

Archiving a site archives everything within it, including:

  • Document libraries and files
  • Lists and list data

Administrators should notify the site owners and end users before a site is archived so they're aware that the site won't be accessible.