Jan 29, 2016

Quick Tip: Force "Make a Copy" on Google Drive Shares

Sometimes you just want to quickly share a template and make it easy for students or colleagues to make a copy.

Up until today your process probably looked something like this:
  1. Share the file or document with read-only permissions as suits your need. 
  2. Make the link accessible to your audience, along with instructions on how to make a copy.
  3. Prepare to answer questions on how to copy, be amazed by those who recreate the document, or annoyed when you realize the entire class is typing in the template (because you accidentally gave everyone Edit access!).

Here is an equally simple, yet less frustrating method. Please note that this quick tip only works with Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Images.
  1. Share the file or document with read-only permissions as suits your need. 
  2. Copy the Link to Share (from Share Settings popup).
  3. Paste the address, replace the last section with the word copy.

For example:
Original share link: https://docs.google.com/..../edit?usp=sharing
Force to make a copy share link: https://docs.google.com/..../copy


Don't Forget to Share!
No matter what you append, users will not be able to view or access the file unless it has been Shared in some way. You can share with individuals, groups, or the whole world. You can give access to Edit, View, or Comment.