How to share

With Google Drive, you can share files — like documents, images, and PDFs — without having to email them as attachments. Sharing is as easy as indicating which email addresses or mailing lists should have access to a given file.

Share a file with an email address or mailing list

  1. Go to drive.google.com.
  2. Check the box next to the file or folder you'd like to share.
  3. Click the google drive share icon Share icon.

  4. Choose a visibility option: "Private," "Anyone with the link" or "Public on the web."

    visibility options

  5. Type the email addresses of the people you want to share with in the text box below "Add people." You can add a single person or a mailing list.
  6. Choose the access level from the drop-down menu next to each collaborator: "Can view," "Can comment," or "Can edit."

  7. Click Share & save.
Sharing something with a mailing list? If you’re sharing with a group containing more than 200 members, either notify the group by email or provide a link to the file. Your fellow mailing list members need to directly click the link, in the email notification or otherwise, for the file to show up in their Drive lists. The file will show up in the "Recent" and "All items" section of Drive for group members.

Send a link to a shared file

If you’ve set a file or folder to "Anyone with the link" or "Public," you can send the link to another person and they’ll be able to access it.

  1. Go to drive.google.com.
  2. Check the box next to the file or folder you'd like to share.
  3. Click the Share icon google drive share icon.

  4. Copy the link at the top of the sharing settings.
  5. Send the link to another person or mailing list in an email or chat.

Send a file as an email attachment

Google Drive eliminates the need to send files as email attachments, but if you absolutely must, here's how:

  1. Open the file you'd like to share.
  2. Go to the File menu, and select Email as attachment....
  3. Select a file type from the drop-down menu.
  4. Enter the email addresses of the people to whom you'd like to send the file. If you'd like, you can also add a subject and a message.
  5. Click Send. Recipients will receive the file as a downloadable attachment in the format you've selected.

Tips for sharing in Google Drive

Notify people when you share something

Whenever you share something with someone, they’ll receive an email notification to let them know they have access and can retrieve what you shared the next time they sign into Google Drive. Prefer not to notify them? Uncheck the "Notify people via email" box.

Add lots of collaborators quickly by sharing with a Google Group

Rather than type your collaborators’ email addresses one-by-one, add an entire Google Group. Each member of that Google Group will have access to whatever you’ve shared, including people who are added to the group after you’ve shared something. This option isn’t available for mailing lists that aren’t Google Groups.

Share lots of files at once

If you want to share multiple items with your collaborators, move them into a folder and share the folder with them. Since you’re sharing the folder, that’s their key to access. They’ll be able to access whatever’s stored there or lose access if you remove something that they don’t already have access to.

Having issues with sharing? Learn more about troubleshooting sharing problems.