How to Configure the Default Sharing Levels of Files and Folders in Google Drive

Quick and easy-to-follow guide for Google Drive users

What is the default sharing level of Google Drive files and folders

Each file and folder in your Google Drive has a general link sharing level, which determines:

  • Who can access the file or folder by going directly to its web address.
  • What they are allowed to do once they access it.

How do you see a Google Drive file or folder’s web address (link)

A link is a text or image that you can click to go to a web address (URL) in your browser. You can send links to others so that they can access your Google Drive items.

You can see the item’s web address (also known as URL) in the bar on top of your browser. 

  • For example, is a URL that takes you to Google Drive. 
  • An example URL that takes you to a Google Docs file looks like

Follow the steps below to generate a link for one of your files or folders and set up the link sharing access level.

How to get a link to a Google Drive file/folder and control who can access the link step-by-step with images

Step 1

How To Configure The Default Sharing Levels Of Files And Folders In Google Drive - Step 1

Go to Google Drive at and right-click a file or folder, then select Get link.

Step 2

How To Configure The Default Sharing Levels Of Files And Folders In Google Drive - Step 2

You will see the item’s general sharing level below the link. To update the sharing level, just click it and select the new sharing level.

  • Restricted – your file or folder can’t be accessed using the link, but you can grant access to specific people.
  • Your organization’s name (Sunrise Creations Ltd in the image above) – allows any Google Workspace user in the organization to access your item if they have the link.
  • Anyone with the link – allows anyone, including people outside of your organization’s Google Workspace account, to access your item if they have the link

Step 3

How To Configure The Default Sharing Levels Of Files And Folders In Google Drive - Step 3

Click the access level to the right to select if people you haven’t added to direct sharing, as shown here, will be viewers, commenters, or editors.

  • A Viewer can only view items; they can’t edit or add comments.
  • Commenters can view and comment.
  • Editors can view, comment, edit, share with others, update access levels and unshare.

Step 4

How To Configure The Default Sharing Levels Of Files And Folders In Google Drive - Step 4

If you set the sharing level that allows any user in the organization access by link, you also get access to one more setting.

Click Link settings in the top right.

Step 5

How To Configure The Default Sharing Levels Of Files And Folders In Google Drive - Step 5

Check the box to let any Google Workspace user in the organization search and find the file in Google Drive.

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