Google Drive makes it easy to share any file with someone as either VIEW ONLY or EDIT via the SHARE button in any Docs, Sheets or Slides file. But did you know that there are other methods to share?

Preview Mode:

Preview mode is a cleaner look for sharing on websites or with others.

Use this when you want to viewer to only view the document but not make a copy of it into their own Google Drive.  When you share a Google file as View Only it still gives the users an opportunity to download it or to copy it into their own Google Drive.

Regular Sharing Mode:
Regular share showing the Google Docs menu bar at the top

Preview Mode:

When you use PREVIEW mode it’s cleaner and has no copy/download options
Preview mode with no menu bar showing

How to Use Preview Mode

  1. Start in Google Drive inside your file.
  2. Click the Share button in the upper corner.
  3. Click on Get Shareable Link and choose Anyone with the link can view.
  4. Copy the link given.
  5. Open a Word document, Google Doc, or a Text Note and paste the url you copied into that document.
  6. Highlight the end of the url, everything from the word Edit or View on and delete it.
  7. Now, in it’s place, type in the word preview.
  8. Copy this new URL and use it wherever you want (webpage, blog, etc.)

Example: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Qutrs_d25LuUioopq2VFUV6iJe2GNYxSxrUJeZeXovM/preview

Copy Mode

Copy mode forces the file to be copied into the viewer’s Google Drive account before they can view it.

You can use this when you want to give a handout, worksheet, or template to your students for them to complete without altering the original.  When you share a Google file as View Only it can be copied into a user’s Google Drive but the user has to know how to do this.  Using the copy mode the user is prompted to copy the file and doesn’t have to know how to manually do it.

copy document screen with blue "make a copy" button
Above is what the user will see when they click on a link modifies for Copy mode.  Clicking on Make a Copy will automatically copy the file into their Google Drive.

How to Use Copy Mode

  1. Start in Google Drive inside your file.
  2. Click the Share button in the upper corner.
  3. Click on Get Shareable Link and choose Anyone with the link can view.
  4. Copy the link given.
  5. Open a Word document, Google Doc, or a Text Note and paste the url you copied into that document.
  6. Highlight the end of the url, everything from the word Edit or View on and delete it.
  7. Now, in it’s place, type in the word copy.
  8. Copy this new URL and use it wherever you want (webpage, blog, etc.)

Example: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Qutrs_d25LuUioopq2VFUV6iJe2GNYxSxrUJeZeXovM/copy

Other Options

Other options available using the method outlined above.  Just replace the Edit/View area of the URL with:

export?format=doc – forces the Doc to download as a Word file.
export?format=pdf – forces the Doc to download as a PDF file.
export?format=rtf – forces the Doc to download as a Rich Text Fomat file.
export?format=txt – forces the Doc to download as a Plain Text file.
export?format=html – forces the Doc to download as an HTML (web) file.

Example: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Qutrs_d25LuUioopq2VFUV6iJe2GNYxSxrUJeZeXovM/export?format=doc

 

 

 

 

 

 

Copy Mode:

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