Find files & folders with Google Drive shortcuts

Shortcuts make it easier for you or your team to find and organise files and folders in multiple Google Drives.

Learn about shortcuts

  • A shortcut is a link that references another file or folder. 
  • You can use shortcuts in your drive or a shared drive.
  • Shortcuts are visible to everyone with access to the folder or drive. 
  • Shortcuts point back to the original file so you always have the latest info. 
  • You can create up to 500 shortcuts per file or folder yourself. Each item can have up to 5,000 total shortcuts created by anyone.

IMPORTANT: Shortcut titles are visible to everyone with access to the folder or drive that the shortcut is inside. Just because someone can see the shortcut doesn’t mean they can open it. The original file’s permissions don’t automatically update when you create a shortcut to it. Remember to give any new users access to the original file.

For a list of Google Drive hotkeys, go to keyboard shortcuts.

Create a shortcut

Important: You can create a copy of a shortcut in a Drive folder, but you can't create a shortcut to another shortcut file.

Manually create a shortcut

  1. In your browser, go to Google Drive.
  2. Right-click the file or folder that you want to create the shortcut for.
  3. Click Add shortcut to Drive.
  4. Select the location where you want to place the shortcut.
  5. Click Add shortcut.

Use keyboard shortcuts to create a shortcut

  1. On your computer, go to
  2. Select a file.
  3. To copy the file to the clipboard, press Ctrl + c.
  4. Go to the new location.
  5. To paste the shortcut into the new location, press Ctrl + Shift + v.


  • This function is only available on Google Chrome.
  • You can't delete a shortcut inside a Drive folder that someone else owns.
  • You can't create a shortcut to another shortcut file, but you can make a copy. You can also make a copy of a folder shortcut.
  • When you create a shortcut, some people may only have access to the shortcut location. You may get a prompt to grant them access to the target file. The default permission is 'Viewer'. You can change the permission to 'Commenter' or 'Editor'.

Delete a shortcut


  • You can delete a shortcut, but you can’t delete the original file, or a file you don’t own. The shortcut's owner can delete the shortcut, but the target file can only be deleted by the file's owner.
  • If you don’t have permission, you may not be able to delete a file or folder.
  1. In your browser, go to Google Drive.
  2. Right-click on the shortcut that you want to remove.
  3. Click Remove.
  4. To permanently remove the shortcut, delete it from your bin.
    1. On the left, click Bin.
    2. ​Right click the shortcut you want to delete and then  Delete forever  Bin.

Fix a broken shortcut

A shortcut will break if:

  • You don’t have permission to open the original file.
  • The original file is in the bin.
  • The original file is deleted.

To fix the broken shortcut, try to restore the original file, or ask the owner for permission to open the file.

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