What can you do with Team Drives?

Team Drives is a shared space where teams can easily store, search, and access their files anywhere, from any device.

Unlike files in My Drive, files in a Team Drive belong to the team instead of an individual. Even if members leave, the files stay exactly where they are so your team can continue to share information and get work done.

Important: Team Drives is only available with the G Suite Enterprise, Business, or Education editions. If you don't see Team Drives in Google Drive, it might not be available for your organization. For details, contact your G Suite administrator.

Not sure whether to use My Drive or Team Drives?

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Are the files of interest to most or all members of a particular project team?
  • Do the files share a consistent theme?

If you answered "yes" to both questions, creating a new Team Drive is a good idea. If the files are for a variety of projects, create multiple Team Drives.

For a comparison of My Drive and Team Drives, see the Drive FAQ What's the difference between My Drive and Team Drives.

What you need:

account_circle G Suite account

schedule 10 minutes

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1

Set up a Team Drive

Start by setting up a Team Drive and adding members.

In this section, you learn how to:

1.1

Create a Team Drive

  1. Open Google Drive.
  2. On the left, click Team Drives.
  3. At top, click
     
    New
    .
  4. Enter a name and click Create.
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1.2

Add members and set access levels

When you add new members, they’re given Content manager access. You can change a member's access level.

Note: Give members who need to edit files in Drive File Stream Content manager access.

Permission

Manager

Content manager

Contributor

Commenter

Viewer

Permission

Can view files and folders

Manager

check

Content manager

check

Contributor

check

Commenter

check

Viewer

check

Permission

Can comment on files

Manager

check

Content manager

check

Contributor

check

Commenter

check

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can edit files

Manager

check

Content manager

check

Contributor

check

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can create and add files, can create folders

Manager

check

Content manager

check

Contributor

check

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can add people to specific files

Manager

check

Content manager

check

Contributor

check

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can restore files from the Trash (up to 30 days)

Manager

check

Content manager

check

Contributor

check

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can move files from My Drive to a Team Drive

Manager

check

Content manager

check

Contributor

check

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can move files out of a Team Drive or between Team Drives

Manager

check

Content manager

check

Contributor

remove

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can move files and folders to the Trash

Manager

check

Content manager

check

Contributor

remove

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can move files and folders within a Team Drive

Manager

check

Content manager

remove

Contributor

remove

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can add or remove members of a Team Drive

Manager

check

Content manager

remove

Contributor

remove

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can change member access levels

Manager

check

Content manager

remove

Contributor

remove

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Permission

Can permanently delete files in the Trash

Manager

check

Content manager

remove

Contributor

remove

Commenter

remove

Viewer

remove

Add members and set access levels:

Requires Manager access

  1. On the left, click a Team Drive.
  2. At the top, under the Team Drive name, click +Add members.
  3. Add names, email addresses, or groups from Google Groups.
  4. (Optional) To change the access level, next to Content manager, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down.
  5. (Optional) Enter a message.
  6. (Optional) If you don’t want to send a notification to the new members, check the Skip sending notifications box.
  7. Click Send or Add.
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1.3

Change member access levels

Requires Manager access

  1. On the left, click a Team Drive.
  2. At the top, next to the Team Drive name, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down > Manage members.
  3. Next to a member’s name, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down and select a new access level.
  4. Click Done.
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1.4

Remove members

Requires Manager access

  1. On the left, click a Team Drive.
  2. At the top, next to the Team Drive name, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down > Manage members.
  3. Next to a member’s name, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down and select Remove member.
  4. Click Done.

Note: If you remove someone from a Team Drive, they might still have access to files shared in other ways, such as files shared with everyone in your organization by link or through a group.

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2

Add files and folders

Now, add files and folders to your Team Drive.

In this section, you learn how to:

2.1

Create folders

Create a new folder:

  1. On the left, click a Team Drive or existing folder.
  2. Click
     
    New
    > Folder.
  3. Enter a folder name and click Create.

Note the following:

  • To move folders into a Team Drive that are already stored in My Drive or another Team Drive, contact your G Suite admin.
  • Subfolders must have the same permission as the top-level folder.

Upload an existing folder from your computer:

  1. On the left, click a Team Drive folder.
  2. On your computer, drag an existing folder into a Team Drive. Or, click
     
    New
    > Folder upload. Navigate to the folder and open it.
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2.2

Add and edit files

Requires at least Contributor access

Any files you add are owned by the team. If you leave the Team Drive, your files remain.

  1. On the left, click a Team Drive.
  2. Drag an existing file (that you own*) from your computer or from My Drive into a Team Drive. Or, click New and choose an option:
    • To create a file, select the file type you want to create, such as Google Docs.
    • To upload a file, click File upload. Navigate to the file and open it.
  3. Double-click a file to open and edit it.

*If you don't own the file but have Can edit access in Drive, you can move it to a Team Drive if your G Suite admin has allowed this option.

Note: To store and access files on your desktop, use Drive File Stream. See Get started with Drive.

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3

Manage Team Drive files and folders

Get tips for structuring a Team Drive and creating and finding files.

In this section, you learn how to:

3.1

Star important files

Flag important files or folders to quickly find them later. Just right-click a file or folder and select Add star.

To see all your starred files and folders, on the left, click Starred.

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3.2

Move files

To move files from My Drive into a Team Drive or between Team Drives, drag the files into the destination Team Drive folder. To move folders, contact your G Suite admin.

Move files from My Drive to Team Drives:

You can move any file you own into a Team Drive, whether it’s from another Drive location or from your computer or mobile device.

If you’re not the owner of a file in My Drive, but you have Edit access to the file, you might be able to move that file into a Team Drive, if:

  • Your G Suite admin has enabled this option.
  • The file’s owner is a member of the Team Drive where you want to move the file.

Otherwise, you need to ask the owner to move the file into the Team Drive.

Move files between Team Drives:

To move files between Team Drives, you need Manager access to the original Team Drive and at least Contributor access to the destination Team Drive.

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3.3

Delete or restore files

Move a file to trash:

Requires at least Content manager access

  1. Click the file you want to delete.
  2. At the top, click Trash delete.
  3. Click Delete For Everyone.

The file moves to the Team Drive's Trash folder. Files in a Team Drive’s Trash folder are automatically deleted after 30 days.

Permanently delete a file in trash:

Requires Manager access

  1. In the Trash folder, right-click the file you want to delete and select Delete forever.
  2. Click Delete Forever to confirm.

Restore a file (up to 30 days):

Requires at least Contributor access

  1. On the left, click a Team Drive.
  2. At top, next to the Team Drive name, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down > View trash.
  3. Click the file > Restore history.
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3.4

Search for files

Search in a Team Drive or folder:

  1. Right-click a Team Drive and click Search within Team Drive name.
  2. In the Search box, enter your search term and press Enter.
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4

Share and collaborate

Any files you put in a Team Drive are automatically shared with members of the Team Drive. Any member can also share Team Drive files with people who aren’t members unless you restrict sharing.

In this section, you learn how to:

4.1

Share files

Requires at least Contributor access

Note: Folders in Team Drives can’t be shared.

Just like in Drive, there are different ways to share files in Team Drives with people who aren't members of the Team Drive.

Note: Your ability to share files might be limited by your organization. Ask your G Suite admin for more information.

Share files with individuals or groups:

  1. In a Team Drive, click the file you want to share.
  2. At the top, click Share person_add.
  3. Add names, email addresses, or groups from Google Groups.
  4. (Optional) To change the permission from Edit, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down and choose another permission.
  5. (Optional) Add a message.
  6. (Optional) If you don't want to send notifications, check the Skip sending notification box.
  7. Click Send or Add.

To limit sharing options, see Restrict sharing options on sensitive Drive files.

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Share a link:

To make a file widely accessible and avoid managing access in your organization, you can share the file with a link. Anyone in your organization who gets the link can access the file. Optionally, you can let other users share the link with people that are not in your organization.

  1. In a Team Drive, click the file you want to share.
  2. At the top, click Share person_add.
  3. Click Who has access.
  4. Next to Link sharing off, click the Down arrow expand_more.
  5. Next to Link Sharing, click Turn on slider-off to make the link accessible to anyone in your organization.
  6. Under the URL, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down and select a permission level.
  7. (Optional) To allow sharing the link outside of your organization, check the Allow external access box.

    Note: If you don't see this option, it could be turned off by your G Suite admin.

  8. (Optional) To make the document searchable in Drive, check the Findable in search results box.
  9. Click Copy to copy the link.
  10. Click Done.
  11. Paste the link in an email, on a website, or wherever you need to share it.
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4.2

Unshare files

Unshare files with your organization:

  1. In a Team Drive, click the file you want to unshare.
  2. Click Share person_add.
  3. Click Who has access.
  4. Next to Link Sharing, click Turn off slider-on.
  5. Click Done.
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Unshare files with individuals:

  1. In a Team Drive, click the file you want to unshare.
  2. Click Share person_add.
  3. Click Who has access.
  4. Next to the person, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down > Remove.
  5. Click Done.

Note: Group settings can override individual settings. So, if you try to unshare a file with a person who belongs to an organization or group with access to the file, this person can still access the file.

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4.3

Protect files

Protect all files in a Team Drive:

Requires Manager access

  1. On the left, click the Team Drive that contains the files you want to protect.
  2. At the top, next to the Team Drive name, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down > Team Drive settings.
  3. Click Edit to set any of these permissions:
    • Sharing files with people outside of your organization
    • Sharing files with people in your organization who aren’t members of the Team Drive
    • Allowing people with Commenter and Viewer access to download, copy, or print files
  4. After you choose an option, click Apply.
  5. Click Done.
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Prevent people from downloading, printing, or copying a file:

Requires Manager access

  1. Click the file you want to protect.
  2. At the top, click Share person_add.
  3. At the bottom, click Who Has Access.
  4. Click More more_vert > check the Restrict download, print, & copy actions on this file for commenters and viewers box.
  5. Click Done.

Note: You can limit how people share, print, download, and copy within Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides, but you can't stop how others share the file content in other ways.

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4.4

See or email members

See members of a Team Drive:

  1. On the left, click a Team Drive.
  2. At the top, next to the Team Drive name, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down > View members.

Email members of a Team Drive:

  1. On the left, click a Team Drive.
  2. At the top, next to the Team Drive name, click the Down arrow arrow_drop_down > Email members.
  3. Change the subject and enter your message.
  4. (Optional) To only email members with specific access levels, or to send yourself a copy of the email, check the boxes.
  5. Click Send.
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Next steps

Try it now

Go to Drive and click Team Drives to get started.

Note: If you don't see Team Drives, it might not be enabled. Contact your G Suite administrator.

Get more training

Get tips for using Team Drives, learn best practices, or reference a cheat sheet.