Microsoft re-launched its OneNote notetaking app a few months ago. It’s now available on its own, as well as part of Microsoft Office, and a basic version is free for anyone to use. Free apps are available on Windows and Mac, and on iOS, Android and Windows Phone devices, and on the web.
Whilst I prefer Evernote, I’ve been exploring OneNote as a more fully-featured alternative, and have it installed on my Mac, iPhone and iPad. OneNote 2010 is also on my work computer as part of Office 2010, so I decided to hook it up. However, as OneNote (the web service which links to OneDrive) has changed quite a bit and OneNote 2010 therefore needs some extra components to be installed first. If not, then when you try to open a notebook on the web, OneNote will reject your password even if it’s correct.
Here’s what I did to solve the problem:
1. Install the OneNote 2010 Updates
In November 2011, Microsoft released a series of updates to improve the links between OneNote and what was then known as SkyDrive, now OneDrive. These should have been installed automatically by Windows Update, but you can install these manually if you think they haven’t. In my case, these had all been installed already.
2. Install Windows Essentials
You’ll also need to install Windows Essentials 2012 – the latest version at the time of writing. This includes an updated Windows Live Sign-in tool that OneNote will need. You will need to install at least one of the apps in the Essentials bundle, even if you have no plans to use it. I would suggest installing OneDrive, if it’s not already installed, and bear in mind that the Windows Live Messenger app is now defunct in favour of Skype despite it still being included.
Hopefully OneNote will accept your password now when you try to log in to your online notebooks. If not, it may be because you have enabled two-factor authentication, which isn’t supported. You’ll therefore need to log into your Microsoft Account on the web and generate an app password to use instead.