Can Viewers on Google Drive download Files? Here is all you need to know

The concept of digitalization has revolutionized the creation, storage, and maintenance of records and documents to a great extent. Everything in today’s era, from books, manuscripts, mark sheets to bills, invitations, letters, is being watched by the eyes of online document reading platforms. Google Drive has sensationalized the cloud storage industry with its immense versatility as a PDF reader too.

Not a day passes when a massive number of people take help from Google Drive. To view their reports or documents and sometimes may even feel the need to download them remotely. It becomes quite essential to do so when the documents are original, and you need to preserve them for future purposes.

Coming back to the original concern of can viewers on Google Drive download files. YES, viewers can download files from Google Drive unless the creator has disabled the downloading rights for everyone.

But, for authors who do not wish anyone to have the right to download their content, this is not only a nightmare for them but also tricky to deal with too.

Even though the read-only mode, you have the ease of downloading any image or document quickly using a few simple steps. It isn’t rocket science anymore to save your reports without roaming around Google to get it done straight!

Can Viewers on Google Drive download Files- Here are the Steps to Follow

Whenever you encounter book PDFs or unique templates on the internet that provide Google Drive links to view them, it isn’t much difficult to download them and keep them for yourself without spending hours finding ways to crack them.

Can Viewers on Google Drive download Files
Can Viewers on Google Drive download Files

Approach I : Google Drive download options

Probably the easiest way to get your job done. The next time you open a document via Google Drive, look for the download button on the top right corner of the preview window.

This will download the file automatically to your system in a second. Even your browser can save the document as an HTML web page file.

If you don’t see any ‘download’ button anywhere in the preview window, you can try right-clicking the file name from outside the window. Now, click to download from the drop down menu.

You can download folders or multiple files at once too. Remember that multiple files selected are downloaded remotely as zip files which need to be unzipped using zipping tools.

This method runs parallelly same on Windows, iOS, Android or Mac supported devices.

Approach II: Sync directly from Google Drive to your system folder

This approach is yet another way of simplifying and answering the question can viewers on Google Drive download files. You can now sit back and relax.

Now, let us learn about synchronizing your Google Drive data to your computer in a few quick steps.

For this method, you will need to install Google Drive‘s software to your Windows PC or Mac, or the Drive application in case you are working through your Android or iOS devices.

Now, sign in using the same Google account you used for viewing the file to make things smoother. As you proceed further, select files to be synced to your system. You can then select individual or multiple files, folders, or your entire drive as well.

Finally, all you need to do is check ‘sync my drive to this device, and everything will be backed up here. Here you go; you now have a downloaded version of the file you wished to save.

Read How To Recover Permanently Deleted Photos From Google Drive

How to prevent viewers from downloading your files from Google Drive?

For original owners out there, here is what you need to know. When you are juggling with your self-created work, or maybe documents harboring confidential data, it isn’t safe to share PDFs or images or audios or even videos.

Without checking out some settings that will make sure your data is secure and well kept. Google Drive has now come up with easy creator-friendly options to protect your information from getting easily accessible to the public.

It is the very difficult and tricky part to prevent people from downloading content that they can access as viewers. Because technically, they are unable to open such Drive files without them getting downloaded into their computer.

Method 1:

Suppose you wish to stop the public from engaging in unfair means to download files but still want them to view them for research, preview, or survey purposes.

In that case, you may need to get a bit technical and try to encrypt or encode the content limits in a way such that only your web app viewing the file can decrypt or decode the data.

This way, the file has no meaning to other people using other platforms and is safe and secure.

Read How to Rotate a PDF in Google Drive

Method 2:

There is yet another more straightforward way to get things done for the non-tech geeks. Right before you decide to share your document across, click the ‘Advanced‘ button placed in the bottom right corner of the page.

Now, choose ‘Disable options to download, print, and copy for commenters and viewers. That’s it. It is that smooth to create a barrier around your content.

Just when you thought disabling people to download your files was the end solution to safeguard your originality, you were wrong. There are multiple other ways to retrieve someone else’s content in today’s era.

The text can also be copied and then pasted. Even a few free online service platforms also help users to save foreign files on Google Drive.

Read How to Scan Google Drive for Viruses

Method 3:

But no worries now. With this protective feature, selected viewers are not even permitted to copy and paste the text from your documents!

Unfortunately, viewers still have the liberty to take screenshots of the document. But it’s a significant step forward in Drive security powered by Google security support.

Another way Google Drive prevents unnecessary barging to your files is the variety of restriction features it offers.

It has options to restrict assigned editors from re-sharing the data further or changing the access permissions limited. It can be easily applied through the ‘settings’ option beside the ‘Share’ button. 

The methodology proceeds pretty much the same way while constraining commentators or viewers from copying, downloading, or even printing the content.

But, one thing to remember here is that files and folders work independently in the Google Drive workspace. While you share your folder or file with applied settings, it only works for that particular entity.

For example, to collect all individual files of the folder under the same bracket, assigning folder restrictions won’t be of much help. You will require barring all your files first before proceeding with the folder settings.

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While you put out your PDFs or anything else as shareable links on various platforms, checking the ‘Anyone with link’ box allows everyone to download the files. Sometimes, you want them to be obtainable.

While sometimes, you wish all sharing and tampering features should be grayed out of the file window. Google proposes many features to reinforce the security standards for creators.

As a viewer, you may feel like a naïve child if you are unfamiliar with the available common sharing or downloading options. With the simple methods described above, you can now save files, documents, reports, records, and much more, all being legal ways, of course. While re-sharing, you have many limiting approaches to choose from permissions granted to what people can interfere with.