Limits on sharing

There are limits to the number of people with whom you can share files, folders, and Docs editors (Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, and Drawings), as well as how many people can work together at the same time on a file:

  • Only 50 people can edit or comment on a document, spreadsheet, presentation, or drawing at the same time. Additional users will still be able to view the item, but they won't be able to edit it, and they won't be visible to others working on the item.
  • A single file, folder, or Google file can only be shared with 200 email addresses including viewers, commenters, and editors (doesn't apply to public items). If your needs exceed these limits, consider the following:
    • When possible, choose one of the public visibility options.
    • Share the document or file with a mailing list rather than individuals.

If you share a folder with a large number of people, you may notice a delay while permissions changes are applied to each item inside.

Tips for sharing files and folders with a broad audience

  • When sharing a folder with a large number of people, minimize delay and make sharing easier by adding the relevant users to a Google Group and then sharing the item with that group. Members of the group can easily add these files to "My Drive" when opening them through an email notification.
  • When sharing a file with more than 50 expected viewers, try publishing your file for viewing. This will generate a separate link for viewing, and keep the original link for editing, allowing others to view the file even if there are already 50 people editing it at the time.
  • If you’re collecting information from others in a spreadsheet, consider creating a Google Form to allow users to submit information and store the form information right in your spreadsheet. With this method, a larger number of users can add information to your spreadsheet at the same time.

Mary is a Docs & Drive expert and author of this help page. Leave her feedback below about the page.

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