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 shortcuts are in.
  • Not everyone who can access the file or drive can open the shortcut.
  • The original file's permissions aren't automatically updated when you create a shortcut.
  • To get access to the file or folder, request permissions to the original file through the shortcut. The owner of the original file then gets an email with the request to give permissions.

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 drive.google.com.
  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.

Important:

  • 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

Important: 

  • 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 the shortcut that you want to remove.
  3. Click Move to bin .
  4. To permanently remove the shortcut, delete it from your bin.
    1. On the left, click Bin.
    2. ​Right-click the shortcut that 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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