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Use Windows Hello to unlock OneDrive in Windows 10 Mobile

Did you know you can unlock the OneDrive app for Windows 10 Mobile with just your eyes?

The OneDrive app has Windows Hello built in and if you are on a Lumia 950 or Lumia 950 XL, you can set the app to unlock just by using the built-in iris scanner. The process to set it up is simple:

  1. Open OneDrive for Windows 10 Mobile
  2. Hit the menu button ('☰') in the upper left-hand corner
  3. Choose Settings
  4. Select Additional device sign-in
  5. Under Additional device sign-in choose On

The app uses the Windows Hello system setup under device sign-in.

Assuming you have already enabled Windows Hello there is nothing left to do. The next time you open OneDrive on your Lumia 950 or Lumia 950 XL you will first need to scan your iris to view any system files.

You do still need to hit Ok after the scan, but developer Rudy Huyn (who heads the Dropbox app) has noted before that a forthcoming OS update should soon remove that extra step.

Evidently, Microsoft enabled this at some point in the past updates this feature was enabled, but we glossed over it. Hopefully, with Microsoft's blog post on how developers can integrate Windows Hello into their apps we'll see even more apps in 2016 leverage this very cool two-factor authentication system.

Thanks, Krystian G., for the tip!

Daniel Rubino
Executive Editor

Daniel Rubino is the Executive Editor of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft here since 2007, back when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Microsoft Surface, laptops, next-gen computing, and arguing with people on the internet.

106 Comments
  • Cool! :D
  • I'll notify all the 7 people who own the Lumia 950/Xl. :)
  • Aren't they following WC? They should be...
  • Half of them are from WC.
  • Thanks! 1 down, only 6 to go!
  • I hope you didn't mean this seriously.
  • Haha you are so funny... NOT! But seriously I'm really wondering how many they actually sold last quarter. 1 million equals 600 million in reveneu (which is almost double of last quarter), 2 million equals 1.2 billion (which is over 3 times last quarter) and then they also would have sold some 550's and older inventory so it's very possible that not only the Surface brand but also Lumia could be a billion dollar business for Microsoft!! Well we should know tomorrow when Microsofts quarterly report gets in ^^!  
  • A million?? Are you high? I think over 100k would be nice for Microsoft.
  • You accidently typed a 'k' there.
  • LOL, Not Funny! :P
  • They sold over 30 million Lumia's last year, which avareages at a 7.5 million a quarter. 1 million 950/950xl's issn't that insane out of +/- 5-7.5million Lumia's total they would have sold this holliday season. You also seem to forget that Lumia and Windows Phone/Windows 10 Mobile hold a decent share in key European markets, where high end phones actually sell. And then their is the whole situation of them barely being able to keep the damn phones in stock, so we know they did sell... I think 1 million high end Lumia's sold last quarter issn't insane, it's quit realistic.  
  • Okay I agree to a certain extent however I do not believe Microsoft sold a million phones costing up to 650. Especially when it's relatively unknown and hasn't got the best software. ( per user issues on this site alone)
    Therefore I personally think 1 million is wishful thinking. I hope I'm wrong of course.
  • Because of the backlogs of the Display Dock it's obviously more then Microsoft anticipated.
  • Yes.. And how much did they anticipate?
  • Doesn't being out of stock numerous times imply anything?
  • The fact that you know 7 people with 950/xl means it must be doing well. If all of them know 7 people that's quite a lot of people. ;)
  • Yep...they all know 7 people as well... But the same one only :p
  • I am the only one in my town with Lumia 950 XL (and no one with 950) though!!!!!... people call me to see the mobile.... some of them might have ordered it...
  • You say people call you to see your phone, but how do those people know what phone you have?
  • No need. Hello doesn't work for those 7 anyway. It degrades battery life and stops working after a few unlocks anyway. When it's not doing that, it's popping up when the phone doesn't need unlocking. Needs a helluva lot of work. Ironically it works great on the SP4 where it isn't as useful.
  • I share your view that Windows Hello on the 950 is not as reliable as on the Surface Pro 4. On my SP4, Windows Hello has not failed once. It may not be useful to you, but that dosen't make it useful to others. It is stopped unwanted viewing of my Surface from co-workers and even my grandson. It's usefulness is dependent on your uses of the device and your needs.
  • I also have to agree with your comment.  I use a 950 and was keen on Hello to start with but after a few days and countless resetting of iris scanner Hello became just too flakey. I've spent so much time clearing it, restarting it, having my irises mapped dozens of times but still spend so much time unlocking the phone it's not worth it.  Initially I thought it was to do with light conditions as it seemed to fail in low light conditions but this developed into any condition.  Also, I tried various distances, angles and even smiling but it doesn't work for me (and I don't wear glasses or contacts or have my eyes closed). I liked the idea but it doesn't work reliably on my 950. Perhaps a finger print scanner would be better?
  • Granted the finger print scanner didn't work very well either when it was introcuced on iPhone 5s, two generations later on the 6s that thing rocks!
  • In your house? That's quit a lot :)
  • Let's feed the troll! "Apple Q1 2016 Record Profits but iPad and Mac sales 'down' iPhone growth 'STALLED'"... Sorry, me bad! http://www.neowin.net/news/apple-q1-2016-record-profits-but-ipad-and-mac...
  • What a joker.
  • That is cool, wish Microsoft pushed fingerprint scanning tech on phones too. Holding a phone towards your face isn't always convenient.
  • They're relying on hardware vendor support.  Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 is coming with ultrasonic based fingerprint reader which will work with Windows Hello.
  • errro
  • I unlock my 950xl easily at 1.5 to 2' away with no problems. No needing to hold the phone up to my face
  • I have to hold mine just a little closer than where I hold it while using it. Not a big deal, especially now that its faster.
  • Try optimizing it in different lighting and at different angles. Mine works from pretty far and diff angles thanks to the optimization. I did a lot of crazy optimizing though since you can see the camera and what angles it can see your eyes. Takes some playing around but it can make it awesome.
  • Same here
  • In that case, firmware tweeking could make it work really well.
  • Then you have no idea what 12" is
  • My biggest annoyance with the Hello is that it can't find me (eyes) while walking...
  • the only problem I had was my phone would reboot 3-5 times a day when I had windows hello turned on.
  • I just hope they keep the feature to press ok for the Store as some games will try to purchase in-app purchases. Having to press ok first helps prevent accidentally buying something you don't want. For apps such as OneDrive, there's no need for such an option.
  • This should come to the Photos app...please don't judge me.
  • When it comes to the Photos it will come to every app, then that will make WM look like Android. Just use a different os already.
  • Well that last part of your statement will cause people to judge you haha.
  • The photo and messaging app are two big ones I know people would like this feature on. Photo I hear it the most but more and more I hear people not wanting others to look at their text.
  • Just need to sort out the photo sync issue and it'll be worth using again!!
  • A few things After recognizing my eyes, the prompt should close on its own. I don't know if it worked unless I look down to see it worked and tap okay. I can't look down if I am looking at the top for scanner to scan my eyes. When switching to the app, it should require authentication again. Opening the app shows my files in the background of the authentication screen, shouldn't.
  • "After recognizing my eyes, the prompt should close on its own."
    Your first point is addressed in the article.
    "When switching to the app, it should require authentication again."
    It does on my phone.
    "Opening the app shows my files in the background of the authentication screen, shouldn't."
    That's a judgement call. Can you discern much in my images I posted?
  • I am sorry I don't read everything, I skim through. It was my observation but glad its going to be fixed. If it does on your phone and doesn't on mine then there is a problem with it. Your dpi settings are higher than mine, I have mine on 250% and it shows a lot more but regardless if the idea is security and you have files that show its a potentional security risk. Here is my screenshot 
  • I have my dpi at 250 so I am with you on this as I have to sign out each time as all my work documents are on my one drive for business. the good thing if MS added this to OneDrive then OneNote and Excel should be next. heres to hoping.
  • I like the picture of the cat, very inquisitive. is it yours? also, are your three public photos taken with your Lumia 950/xl?
  • Thanks. Cat was 920 I believe. Coffee 830.
  • :D :-)
  • Actually coffee was 1520. Not so sure about cat, possibly was 1520 as well. But the 950 has the best camera.
  • Your complaint is moot, as you just posted a screen shot for the world to see, security really isn't a big concern to you.
  • Did you even look at the screen shot? ... If you did then carry on.
  • If you don't have the new IRS option, a lot can be seen with just the PIN, but it would be nice if it blacked out the app until you give the PIN or IRS scan signature.
  • Btw it seems to work on resume after some timeout period, if you switch out of the app and come back to it too soon, it doesn't lock you out again. This should be a setting or have a setting to respect the sign-in options you have be it everytime, every minute etc.
  • Sweet and I'm one of the seven samurais;)
  • No
  • Don't you people think we should get picture lock for our Lumia like we have in Windows 10 desktop
  • Considering it I don't use it on PC, no.
  • What do we have? That sounds intriguing.
  • I know about picture passwords for Windows (8.1 and 10) but not about the ability to lock the photo app.  Use it all the time (and BTW, it works with a mouse, too). I think I just misread the thread. Anyway, thanks!
  • They've just made W10M to be a fully functional os after the basic WP8.1, there are minor bugs that has to be addressed first and then they'll think about tweaking, redesigning and adding new features. It'll happen in the meantime and I have high hopes for it :)
  • Well that's been a wish since its introduction. I think its time for Windows 10 Mobile to have Picture Password.
  • Yes we should. And, btw, the PC implementation is not suitable for multi-user machines (just try to change the user). And it looks alien to W10.
  • Doesn't work for me. Have it activated but I am neither scanned nor asked for my pin. :(
  • Try a reboot or soft reset...
  • Rebooting did indeed help. Thanks for the tip. It is however a little annoying. As I cannot find mentioning of this in the article, I assume this is a bug?
  • ***Off topic*** Why lock screen is so slow & laggy on Lumia 5xx series?
  • Guessing because it's a 5xx series, lol
  • Rather than lockscreen. Everytime is smooth
  • For windows 10?... The lock screen on both desktop and phone have always had some sort of issue on my devices. Just needs work.
  • Do you use any apps that influence the lock screen? Like high resolution pictures can notably slow down the lock screen especially on low end devices.
  • No, only Bing wallpaper which change automatically everyday.
  • MS needs to add goddamn changelogs.
  • In future builds I expect Windows Hello will be used to lock different apps
  • Any idea when Windows Hello getting out of beta state? As always Thank you, Daniel, for the info.
  • Lol, never, everything is beta forever now
  • "Redstone" is the real and finished Windows 10
  • its better to set up ur windows hello in a dark place at the first time, then it will work well each time u sign in , it works fast in light and dark
  • Actually it is better to train windows hello in several different light conditions and not only once.
  • Unlocking the phone takes time from locked phone but I like the idea for the apps.... apart from OneDrive and Store, are there any other apps that use iris scanner?  I hope enpass make use of it like finger scanner on android!
  • The store is using this method? I searched the settings and I do not see this option.
  • its when you make the purchase of an app
  • This is good, though iris recognition doesn't work that well most of the time on the 950 xl
  • The scanner must see your iris. Try looking directly at the scanner, works 99% of the time. And train under different light conditions.
  • Also training the scanner in different light conditions may help.
  • It's not that, I've trained it right. It's just that most of the time I unlock it and it fails before scanning, and other times it doesn't even lit up. When it works, it scans me well, but it's bugged.
  • Very cool. Now I just wish I had friends that used my phone so I would have a need to lock certain apps... If only I had any friends at all. :(
  • An amazing feature for those of us that have a story book password.
  • Awesome!
  • I think we should be able to choose a password or pin which is different from our lockscreen pin similiar to onedrive in WP8.1. Having same pin for both isn't very secure for e.g. if someone knows your pin for some reason they can look into onedrive files as well, or if someone sees you entering your phone pin etc.
  • Windows Hello doesn't always work on the phone so not sure if this will be any better
  • I have no problem's with it! Try looking at the little red light till it focus!
  • Yeah, I've had surprisingly great experience with Windows Hello on my 950XL too. I have performed quite a few of the "training" sessions to improve recognition, but I wear glasses so I feel it deals with a bit of an extra effort when identifiying me. Try to "train" it under different lighting conditions and use the training sessions to get an idea of where the camera really is and what it sees when you're facing you're phone so you better angle it during regular use.
  • "Additional device sign-in" should be implemented at the system level as an option for any app, that would be a hugely helpful feature. There are certain apps I would love to control access to and this would solve that completely.
  • Yeah, we need app authentication on the system level, so a user can assign which apps will have authentication that is configurable under the Settings app. This free the need of having a dev to implement their own app authentication unless maybe they want their own solution. Not everybody will need this but there are some will gonna love having this. Heck it will be sound perfect for enterprise use if its configurable based on Group Policy.
  • Great idea, give feedback so we can support the idea.
  • Don't forget to kill the app using the back button. Once active, it will not require a login.
  • When I read this, I checked my Onedrive on my Lumia 950 XL to set up and but it is already "looking for me" to sign in. I just don't remember but maybe I already set this up. Nice feature.
  • I've made $64,000 so far this year working online and I'm a full time student. Im using an online business opportunity I heard about and I've made such great money. It's really user friendly and I'm just so happy that I found out about it. Heres what I do, ----------------.........>>>>>> http://w­­­­w­­­­w­­­­.n­­­­e­­­­t­­­­t­­­­r­­­­a­­­­d­­­­e­­­­r­­­­2­­­­.­­­­c­­­­o­­­­m
  • Right now OneDrive on my 950 doesn't ask me to authenticate. I use Hello when I log onto the device, when would I need it on OneDrive?
  • Microsoft should make Windows Hello for all apps including third party apps,. This will be cool,.
    .
    I mean there's no security in app, anybody can check my WhatsApp msgz,.
  • I don't get why I need to sign in again to the app, I already set the phone sign in option to every time to use e Hello or pin.
  • I have given up on Windows hello (sadly) it may have worked once or twice on my 950 XL, my Surface Pro 4 works really well. Nice idea but it needs to be fixed if its used as a point of difference/ sales tool.
  • i just tested and it is working fine.
  • When I try it, it says it can't find my eyes - and this is just in the set-up.  Haven't got as far as using it yet!!!