How to Manage Your OneNote Notebooks in Windows Phone 8

I will continue our series about OneNote for Windows Phone 8 with a tutorial on how to close notebooks, hide or unhide them, synchronize your notes, perform searches, delete notes or pin them to the Start screen. Here's how all of this is done:

How to close, hide or unhide notebooks in OneNote for Windows Phone 8

Creating or deleting notebooks cannot be done from OneNote for Windows Phone 8. You can only do this from the PC version of OneNote.

You can however, close notebooks. A closed notebook is still available, the only difference between it and an open one being that it can be hidden from the main view in OneNote for Windows Phone 8.

To close a notebook, first open it from OneNote's main screen.

Tap and hold the notebook you want to close, until a contextual menu is shown. This menu should only have one option: close notebook. Tap it and the notebook is closed.

OneNote for Windows Phone 8 will display a new section on its main screen, named closed notebooks. There you will find all the notebooks that you closed over time.

As I've said before, closed notebooks can be hidden from the main screen of OneNote. For this, tap the more button represented by the three dots on the bottom.

Then, tap hide closed notebooks.

If you want OneNote to show hidden notebooks again, open the same menu and tap show closed notebooks.

If you wish to reopen a closed notebook, all you have to do is tap its name. Then, the notebook is automatically marked as opened and you can edit it.

How to manually sync notebooks and view the sync status for each notebook

If you want to manually sync your notes or entire notebooks, click the more button (the three dots on the bottom of the screen). Then, tap sync and Windows Phone 8 will manually sync your note.

If you choose to do this when a notebook is opened instead of a note, the entire notebook is synchronized, meaning every note inside is synchronized with Microsoft's servers.

While you cannot see the sync status for entire notebooks, you can see it for your notes. For OneNote to show when your notes were last synchronized, first open a note. Then, tap the more button and then view sync status.

A new screen is shown, with details about the most recent synchronization.

Another way to manually sync or to view the sync status is to use the contextual menu. Press and hold on a note or notebook and tap sync or view sync status.

How to delete pages from a note in OneNote for Windows Phone 8

I mentioned earlier that you cannot delete entire notebooks from Windows Phone. But, you can delete pages from your notes. To do this, open the note you want to delete, tap more and then delete.

A prompt is shown, sharing that this action will permanently remove the note's page. If you still want to delete it, tap yes. Otherwise, tap no.

A faster way to delete a page from a note is to open the contextual menu without opening the page itself. Press and hold the page you wish to delete and, in the contextual, tap delete. You will see the same prompt as before.

How to view recent notes from a notebook in OneNote for Windows Phone 8

You might want to see a list with the notes you recently accessed. Anywhere in OneNote, tap recent, on the bottom of the screen.

OneNote displays the list with your latest accessed notes.

If you want to open a note, tap its name.

How to pin a note to the Start screen

Like almost anything else in Windows Phone 8, you can also pin notes to the Start screen.

Open the note you want to pin. Tap more on the bottom and then tap pin to start.

You are taken to the Start screen, where Windows Phone 8 displays the newly pinned note.

How to search in OneNote for Windows Phone 8

If you want to search for a notebook, a note or just words inside a note, use the Search button found in the bottom menu.

The Search screen is displayed, containing only one field. Type the search term you want to use and tap Enter.

OneNote lists the results it finds, starting with notebooks and ending with elements inside notes. Tap on any of those results to open them.


Even if OneNote for Windows Phone 8 doesn't include all the features found in the PC version, it does a good job for a mobile app. As you can see it is not difficult at all to open recent notes, delete pages, perform searches, close or hide notebooks.
Before you go, don't hesitate to share whether there are any missing features you would like to see in the OneNote app for Windows Phone.