Publish a document, spreadsheet, presentation, or drawing

If you want to make a document, spreadsheet, presentation, or drawing available for a large audience to see, you can publish the file. Once you publish your file, you will receive a URL that you can send to anyone you choose or embed into your own website.

Publish a file

To publish any of your files, just follow these steps:

  1. Open a document, spreadsheet, presentation, or drawing.
  2. Click the File menu.
  3. Select Publish to the Web.
  4. While the entire file will be published by default, some file types have additional publishing options available in a drop-down menu:
    • Spreadsheet: Choose to publish the entire spreadsheet or individual sheets
    • Presentation: Choose how quickly to advance the slides
    • Drawing: Choose the image size for your drawing
  5. Click Publish.
  6. Copy the link that appears and send it to anyone who you’d like to see the file.

Your file will be available for anyone to view from this URL until you either delete your file or choose to stop publishing.

It’s not possible to publish other file types, for example PDFs, from Google Drive at this time.
Update your published file when changes are made

The published version will also update automatically when you make changes to the original file. For documents and spreadsheets, you can turn this feature on and off:

  1. Open the document or spreadsheet.
  2. Go to the File menu.
  3. Select Publish to the Web.
  4. Click Published content & settings.
  5. Check the box next to “Automatically republish when changes are made” to allow changes to be updated in the published version. Uncheck the box to keep the published file the same regardless of changes made to the original.

Note: At this time, this feature can't be turned off for presentations that you are publishing, and any changes made to the original presentation will update in the published version as well.

Stop publishing a file
  1. Open the file.
  2. Go to the File menu.
  3. Select Publish to the Web.
  4. Under the “Published content & settings” section, click Stop publishing.

If you choose to stop publishing, anyone clicking the link to the published file will no longer be able to view it.

How published files look when you share them

If you send the URL of the published version of your file to someone else, they won't be able to make any edits, and the version of the file they see will look different from yours. Here’s what others will see:

  • Documents: A version with no toolbar available
  • Spreadsheets: A version with no toolbar available. Viewers will be able to see charts, cell formatting, and the values of cells, but won’t be able to view or edit formulas.
  • Presentations: A view-only version or a version in presentation mode with full-screen slides
  • Drawings: A PNG image version of the drawing
Control who can publish a file

If you're the owner of a file, you can allow others to publish it by sharing the file with them and giving them “Can edit” access.

To stop others from publishing a file, including people who can edit it, you can change your sharing settings:

  • Open a file.
  • Click Share in the top right corner.
  • Click Advanced in the bottom right corner of the sharing box.
  • Click Change at the bottom of the “Sharing settings” menu.
  • Choose the option labeled “Only the owner can change the permissions”.
  • Click Save.

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

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