Change your sharing settings

You can choose how visible your files and folders are, as well as what others can do with these files and folders, when you share in Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides.

Choose how visible to make your file or folder

You can control how visible your files are to other people, from keeping files completely private to allowing anyone on the web to see them.

To choose who can see your file or folder:

  1. Sign in to Drive or a Docs, Sheets, or Slides home screen.
  2. Open the file or folder.
  3. Click Share for files or the share icon for folders in the top-right corner of the screen Share.
  4. Click the dropdown menu below "Link sharing on" in the sharing box.
  5. Select a link sharing option. To see a full list of options, click More. These options include:
    Link sharing option Definition Sign-in to a Google Account required?
    Specific people You are the only person who can access the file or folder until you share it with specific people or groups Yes (to edit or comment)
    Anyone with the link Anyone who is given the link to the file or folder can access it No
    Public on the web Anyone can access the file or folder on the Internet through search results or the web address No
  6. If you picked “Anyone with the link” or “Public on the web”, click the drop-down arrow next to “Access” to choose whether users have permission to view, comment, or edit the file or folder if they open it. Then click Save.
  7. Click Done.

Note that If you're a Google Apps customer, your domain's default setting might be different.

Choose what others can do with your file or folder

When you share a file or folder with other people, you have the choice to give them viewing and editing access, as well as ownership of the file. While not applicable to folders, you can also give commenting access to files in order to get feedback from the people you're sharing with. You can change this access at any time.

Here’s what people can do in a file or folder as a viewer, commenter, editor, or owner:

  Can view Can comment Can edit Is owner
View files and folders x x x x
Download or sync files to another device x x x x
Make a copy of files to save in Google Drive x x x x
Comment and suggest edits in files   x x x
Edit documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and drawings     x x
Share or unshare files with others     x x
Add or remove files from a folder     x x
Upload and delete file versions     x x
Delete files and folders       x
Transfer ownership of files and folders to others       x

Change what others can do with your file

After you’ve shared a file with others, you can change the type of access specific people or groups can have.

  1. Open the file.
  2. Click Share in the top-right corner.
  3. Click Advanced in the bottom-right corner of the sharing box.
  4. Using the dropdown menu next to the user’s name, select the type of access you want them to have.
  5. Click Done.

Remove sharing privileges

If you are the owner of a file or folder, you can choose to remove editors’ ability to share files with others in Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides. This allows you to control everyone who is able to view or edit the file or folder.

Related topics

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

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