Google Drive is an integrated suite of tools that include a number of apps and services. The users have a file management and storage tool called Google Docs, and other content creation tools such and Slides, Sheets, forms, and drawing. These tools have not only catered to the growing needs of online file processing tools but also challenged the ever reigning Microsoft Office. Maybe Google Drive is the reason why Microsoft thought about launching its own online file processing product called Office Online. This product has Excel, PowerPoint, and Word for file processing while the storage of data takes place in the OneDrive.
Maybe Google Drive is the reason why Microsoft thought about launching its own online file processing product called Office Online. This product has Excel, PowerPoint, and Word for file processing while the storage of data takes place in the OneDrive.
Like any other Google product or service, all the tools, applications, and features of Google Drive are free for the users. However, a paid version named as GSuite is available for the enterprises and comes with advanced features such as extended memory (up to 30 GB), integrations with Google apps and tools as well as third-party applications. However, the GSuite is free for educational institutions and nonprofit organizations.
Well, the Drive is all free and easy, you just have to do a Google Drive login and start the work. However, if you really want to get the most of out of what we have one of the best online products of today, you will need to go through the tips and tricks that we have gathered for you in this blog.
Collaborate With Others Like a Pro
What Google Drive does the best is letting the users collaborate seamlessly; regardless of the device or platform, they are using. It allows you to work with up to 50 of your mates in real time; that easily can be the size of a multimillion dollar company. You can collaborate in real time, and track the activities of your fellows easily by checking the revision history. The fact that multiple users working on different platforms and devices can work on a single file is what makes Google Drive a stand out in the competition (though there is not competition out there anyway, just for the sake of it. Let’s just say that the Drive Google is just unavoidable for individuals and companies of any size. )
If you are on a Laptop, your assistant on a Desktop, and your boss on a mobile, it’s not a problem at all to work on a single document! The perfectly sorted out history lets you know who did what and when.
Track Changes on Google Drive
Microsoft Word has a very cool feature; you can track your changes while you edit or revise a document. Guess what, Word is not the only place where you can keep a track of the changes. A similar feature is available on the Google Drive and is called Suggest Edits. You can avail it by clicking on the Edit button. As you click it, you will see a menu that contains options to view, edit with tracked changes, and suggest edits in a file.
Easily Sort Files
When you have a bulk of files and documents on the Drive, you don’t always remember every file’s name. This usually makes the sorting of the files difficult elsewhere, but not the Drive at least. All you have to know is minor details such as the name of the sender or the date it was shared with you. Click on the Shared with Me button and you will have a list of all the files shared with you. To narrow down the list, type in the name of the sender in the given search field, and there you are; the required file is right in front of you in just a few clicks!
Share a File With Public
A document can be shared with as many as 200 people but as mentioned earlier only the first 50 can make changes at a time. The rest can only wait and watch while the first 50 are working. For managers, it gets difficult to allocate editing privileges if the concerned personnel are not in the first 50. This problem can solve by making the file public. To do this, Go to Share>Advanced> Who has access, and click on the change button.
Be informed, however, that the public files are literally viewable to anyone and can be easily searched through the search engines. So, you don’t want to share something confidential publically.
Set Access Levels
Managers can set access levels for the team members working on a certain file. There are various levels of access which a manager can set. An owner can create a file and share it with others. Editors can make edits in the file and can add other members to the team as well; a commentator can view the file and make comments on it, while a viewer can only view the file. One important thing to note while setting the access levels is that a viewer and a commenter can make copies of the file. This means that the access control only means the access to make online edits and changes. Setting access controls doesn’t make the document any safer.
Instant Messaging on Google Drive
Many a times, while working together on a file, it gets important to connect with your colleagues instantly and sort out an issue. While you can use other modes of communication as well, the Drive has a built-in IM service that allows you to connect with each other with a single click. The instant messaging service is a complete communication package with smileys and other features for seamless communication.
Optimize the Google Drive With Add-Ons
There are a plethora of add-ons to leverage from and add to the performance of the Drive Google tools and services. This includes add-ons for Google Sheets and Google Docs that you easily find online and incorporate into your Drive. Among the most used add-ons are ‘Table of Contents’ (quickly creates the table of contents for larger files), Easy Bib for quick citations and bibliographies, and Label Merge (helps in importing and merging of data from third-party services).
Loved Add-Ons? How About Some Apps?
A lot of people confuse themselves with Apps and Add-ons because of a few overlaps and same functionalities. For example HelloFax has an app but is also available as an add-on for the drive. You certainly don’t need both at the same time so you have to choose between the two. Apart from such few examples, there are many useful web applications that you would find over the web to boost the performance of your drive. You can find them on the Chrome Web Store. These apps integrate flawlessly with the drive to let users do something extra with the files. Some popular apps include DocuSign for signing the documents, CloudConvert to convert files into different formats, PicMonkey to import/export images.
The Drag and Drop
In a recent update to the Drive interface, Google has added a ‘New’ button with the help of which a user can create a new file on the Drive. Clicking on the ‘New’ button and adhering to the steps after that gets you a file of the type you want. But if you have files already created on your PC, you can just do a drag and drop and add it to your drive.
This is rather a simpler way to create a file on the Drive; just a drag and drop. To do this, just drag a file from your Desktop Explorer to the file list of your Drive. As you drag the file into the interface, you will see an icon with that has a cloud and an up arrow. This indicates that you can let go the button of your mouse and the file will start uploading right away.
Working offline on Drive Files
Normally, users open and edit the files on the Drive while they have internet access. But if you want to work offline too, i.e., make changes on the files on the drive while offline, you can do that too. For this, you will have to install Google Docs Offline on your PC. You will then go to the Drive settings and check the ‘Sync box ‘. By checking the box, you allow your browser to sync the files on your drive with your PC so that you can open them even if you don’t have any internet access. All the editing on the files will be synched with the Drive as soon as you connect to the internet.
You can also work offline on your smartphone. For this, you will have to enable the offline access prior to going offline. To enable this feature, go to the ‘three dot menu’ on your mobile drive interface and turn on the ‘available offline’ option.
Share Files With Gmail
While communicating over emails, it gets hectic to attach files; especially if they are of larger size. Moreover, there is a limit to the size of the file as attachments i.e. 25 MBs. However, if you have Google Drive with Gmail, you can avoid this inconvenience and share the files with just a single click and without worrying much about the size of the file. For this, you need to upload the file to your drive. Once you have the file on the drive, you can share it with anyone by clicking on the triangle icon at the bottom of the email composer. The size of the file can be as large as 10 GB. This is more than enough to accommodate your normal file sharing needs.
Convert Any File into Google Docs
There is no limit to the type of files these days and you can upload any type of file on the Drive without any problem. But will you be able to work on those files online? Yes, if you convert them into Google Docs format. Converting any type of file to Google Docs format is very easy. To do this, upload the file and right click on the file name. Clicking on the ‘Open with’ option will prompt a sub menu showing different file formats. Choose the file format of your choice. This will create a copy of the original file in the new format. Now you can easily edit the file on the Drive.
Easily Convert PDF/ OCR to Google Doc format
These two formats are a pain in the neck to edit. But if you have files in these formats and you want to make edits, Google Drive has an easy solution for you. Go to the settings menu and enable ‘Convert Uploads’. Although this will take a fairly long time than the normal uploads, you get the file in Google Doc format in the end. In the Google Doc format, you will be able to make edits in the text and resize the inserted images just like you work on a normal document.
Quick Links To Google Drive Apps
To help the users in getting quick access to the drive apps, there are quick links that you can use and avoid using extra time and clicking multiple times. The format used in these links is quite simple to follow. Moreover, the format is quite similar in each app and easy to remember. For example, the link for creating a new document is http://drive.google.com/document/create. Similarly, if you want to create a new drawing, the link is http://drive.google.com/drawing/create. The format runs same in all of the Drive apps.
Voice Input in Google Docs
A very useful feature for those who are not very fond of typing all day long. All you need is a microphone with your PC and you can type in Google Docs with your voice. The option pops up automatically if you have the microphone attached, but if you don’t get the automatic option, you can activate it by going to the Tools menu. Although recognizing every single word is not possible as yet, but the Google is continuously improving on the voice recognition technology and we can say that this feature will only get better and easier in the days to come.
Related Google Help