How to share files on Google Drive in 3 different ways, and choose who can view, comment, or edit

10’000 Hours/Getty ImagesSharing Google Drive files and folders make it easy to collaborate on projects remotely.
  • You can easily share files on Google Drive with just a few clicks.
  • Share settings allow you to specify who can view, comment, or edit files, and who can organise and add content to folders.
  • You can upload files and folders from your computer to later share them by simply dragging them into Google Drive.
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Google Drive is a great tool for a variety of collaborative projects as it allows people to view, download, and edit files directly. It ensures everyone has the most up-to-date version of a file without having to download it onto your computer, edit it, then send around updated copies.

You can create and organise word documents, spreadsheets, and slideshows as well as upload photos and audio and video files.

Here’s what you need to know about sharing files on Google Drive.

How to share a file on Google Drive from a computer

1. On your internet browser, go to Google Drive.

2. Drag and drop the file directly into your Drive.

Google Drive desktop 1Abigail Abesamis/Business InsiderDrag and drop files from your computer into your Drive.

3. Once the upload is complete, open the file.

4. Click the icon with three dots arranged vertically, then click “Share.”

Abigail Abesamis/Business InsiderOpen the file and click ‘Share’ in the menu dropdown.

5. Type in the names or groups you’d like to share the file with. Tap “Done” and the recipients will receive an email with a link directing them to the file.

Google Drive desktop 5Abigail Abesamis/Business InsiderEnter recipient email addresses and hit ‘Done.’

6. Alternatively, you can get a link to share with collaborators (to include in an email, text, or Chat, for example) in the “Get link” section.

Choose which option you want (Restricted, Anyone with the link) then click “Copy link.” For “Anyone with the link,” you can further specify if those that follow the link can view, comment, or edit the file.

Google Drive desktop 7Abigail Abesamis/Business InsiderChoose your permissions, then click ‘Copy link.’

7. If you have multiple files to share, you can drop an entire folder into Google Drive or create a folder in Google Drive, drop the files into the folder, and share the entire folder by right clicking on it and clicking “Share.” More details on folder permissions and what they entail can be found on this Google Drive Help page.

How to share a file created in Google Drive

1. Open a file in Google Docs on your web browser, and click “Share” at the top right of the screen. You’ll see a lock icon next to the word “Share.” This can also be done with Google Sheets, Google Slides. and other Google file-sharing apps.

Google Drive desktop 8Abigail Abesamis/Business InsiderIn an open document, click ‘Share’ at the top right corner.

2. Type in the names or groups you’d like to share the file with. Tap “Done” and the recipients will receive an email with a link directing them to the file.

3. Alternatively, you can get a link to share with collaborators (to include in an email, text, or Chat, for example) in the “Get link” section. Choose which option you want (Restricted, Anyone with the link) then click “Copy link.” For “Anyone with the link,” you can further specify if those that follow the link can view, comment, or edit the file.

4. After this is done, you’ve effectively changed the access permissions of the file. The lock icon next to “Share” will change to an icon of a person with a link underneath.

How to share files on the Google Drive mobile app

1. Open the Google Drive app on your mobile device.

2. Navigate to the file or folder you want to share, then tap the “…” next to the file name.

Google Drive app 2Abigail Abesamis/Business InsiderTap the three dots to open sharing options.

3. Tap “Share,” then type in the names of the people you want to share the file with as well as a message that will accompany the email with a link to the file.

Google Drive app 4Abigail Abesamis/Business InsiderType in recipient email addresses and add a message.

4. Tap the pen icon to change permissions (Edit, Comment, and View).

Google Drive app 5Abigail Abesamis/Business InsiderSelect the pen icon to change editing permissions.

5. When you’re finished, tap the aeroplane icon to send the invitations to collaborators.

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