How To Share a File in Google Drive

There are 3 reasons for this article. Number 1: there are no dumb questions. Number 2: you need to know this. Number 3: sharing options in Drive can be more complicated than you would expect. This is a tutorial so you can master how to share a file in Google Drive.

Share A File in Google Drive

Share A File in Google Drive

Share A Google Document With Others

The first thing you should do is launch Google Drive. Then open the file that you want to share. From there, the steps are the following:

  1. Click on File > Share or click on the top right corner on the Share button. The Share With Others window will pop-up.
  2. Under People, write the email address of the person you want to share this document.
  3. As the icon of a pen indicates, you will allow the other person to edit your document. You can click on the pen and switch this to view access or comment access instead (we will look at the difference in details below).
  4. Since the box in the bottom right corner is checked, you will notify the person by email.
  5. You can write a message which will be part of the email sent as a notification to the other person.
  6. Click Send.
Share A Google Doc In Google Drive With Others

Share A Google Doc With Others

That’s it, your document is shared.

Advanced Link Sharing Options

When you click on Advanced in the bottom right corner, you will have options to fine tune the sharing of your Google Doc.

Share A File in Google Drive Link Sharing

Link Sharing

Clicking on Change will allow you to determine who has access to your document. There is a total of five levels of access. From more private to most public these are:

  1. Specific people – Only the people you selected can access the document.
  2. Anyone in organization with the link – Anyone at your company who has the link to your document can access it.
  3. Anyone in organization – Anyone at your company can search for and find your document.
  4. Anyone with the link – Anyone with the link to your document can access it.
  5. Public on the web – Anyone on the Internet can potentially find your document via a search or with the link.

You can also learn more about link sharing from Google.

Get Shareable Link

If you click on Get Shareable Link, your document will be shared with anyone in your institution who has the link to your document. The link is actually automatically copied to the clipboard and you can paste it anywhere you want to distribute it to people.

Share A File Get Shareable Link

Get Shareable Link

The shareable link is a fast option to share. It is available from a variety of places. It does pop up in Gmail for example, when you attach a document to an email but the recipient may not have access. You should note that this option not as private as selecting specific people with whom you will share your document.

Disable Printing Of A Shared File

When you click on Advanced, as the owner of a file, you also have further control when you share a file over its usage.

Disable Printing Of A Google Doc

Disable Printing Of A Google Doc

By default, when you give another user editing rights on your document, they can in turn share it with more users. Click on Prevent editors from changing access and adding new people and this option is removed.

You can also share a file but disable the option to download, print or copy it. This is great if you want to make a file public online but prevent other users from re-using it.

Prevent Downloads Of A Shared Video In Google Drive

Do you have a fabulous video to share but you are concerned about posting it on YouTube for privacy issues? Ms. Pearl Ortiga has a very elegant solution for you: create your video and upload it to Google Drive.

Share a Video with Google Drive

Share a Video with Google Drive

Using the Google Drive advanced sharing settings described above, set your uploaded video so that anyone with the link can view your document. Then copy and share the link with people.

For added security, you can also prevent users from downloading the video. To do this:

  1. Right click on the video in Google Drive and select Share.
  2. Click on Advanced to get further sharing options.
  3. Under Owner Settings, check the box that disable the option to download for commenters and viewers.

Google Drive Details Button

Google Drive Video Download Permissions

Google Drive Video Download Permissions

Comprehensive Guide to Sharing in Google Drive

I hope this tutorial answered all the questions you had about sharing a file in Google Drive, but if you have more, please ask them in the comment section below and I will respond!

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