Tag Archives: Google Drive

Changes to Google Workspace storage policies timeline

What’s changing

We’re extending the previously announced timeframe for upcoming changes to the Google Workspace storage policy. The updated timeline is:

  • June 1, 2021: High-quality photos will count towards Drive quota beginning June 1, 2021. There is no change to this timeline.
  • February 1, 2022: Any newly created Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Drawings, Forms, or Jamboard files will count toward storage. Existing files within these products will not count toward storage, unless they’re modified on or after February 1, 2022. Read more in our Help Center.

Note that there are no changes to the previously announced dates for personal Google accounts.

Who’s impacted

Admins and end users. Storage limits differ across Google Workspace and G Suite editions, but we estimate that the majority of users will not be affected by these changes. See “Getting Started” below for more information on determining storage usage across your organization.

Why it’s important

People are uploading more content than ever before—in fact, more than 4.3 million GB are added across Gmail, Drive, and Photos every day. These changes to our storage policy are necessary to provide our users with a great experience and to keep pace with the growing demand.



We recently announced changes to the pooled storage policy for Workspace for Education customers. As a part of these updates, to empower Google Workspace admins to adapt to this model and optimize their storage, we will provide new admin tools to identify and manage how storage is used and allocated before the policy goes into effect. We’ve decided to delay the count of Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Drawings, Forms, or Jamboard files count toward storage quotas until that tooling is in place.

Getting started


Rollout pace

High-quality photos
Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Drawings, Forms, and Jamboard

Availability

  • These changes will apply to all customers with Google Workspace and G Suite licenses.

Resources

Changes to Google Drive search operators may alter your Google Vault search results

Quick launch summary

We’ve updated Google Drive Search operators to enable better results when searching for files in Google Vault. This includes changes to the behavior of the to: and from: operators, and a new sharedwith: operator.


Starting April 27, 2021, to: and from: won't match files shared before March 2021, but will better reflect actual sharing actions compared to the current logic. See this Help Center article for more information.


Before April 27, 2021, please check your saved Drive search queries in Google Vault and, if needed, make updates to ensure you get the results you expect:
  • If you search for files in Vault using the to: or from: Drive search operators, you might want to change to: to sharedwith: and from: to owner: to keep the current search behavior.
  • If you do not search for files in Vault using the to: or from: Drive search operators, no action is required.

Note, you’ll know when the new behavior is applied to your to: or from: Drive searches within Vault as you’ll see the below notification near the Terms field:




Getting started

Rollout pace

Availability

  • Available to Google Workspace Business Plus, Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, Education Fundamentals, and Education Plus, as well as G Suite Business customers and customers with the Vault add-on license
  • Not available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, and Business Standard customers, or G Suite Basic customers

Resources

Find files shared with you using updated search operators in Google Drive

What’s changing

We’re updating how some search operators work in Google Drive to make finding shared files easier. This includes adding new search operators and changing the behavior of some existing search operators. You’ll still be able to perform all the same searches, just the operators you’ll use for them may change. The specific changes are:
  • “from:” will now return files shared with you by the specified email address. Previously, it would have returned files owned by that email address.
  • “to:” will now return files that you have shared with the specified email address. Previously, it would have returned all files that the email address had permissions to view, comment, or edit.
  • “sharedwith:” is a new search operator which will return files that the specified email address owns or has permission to view, comment or edit.
  • “owner:” returns files owned by the specified email address. There is no change to this operator, but you can use it to return the results you would previously have used the “from:” operator for.


Who’s impacted

End users, and developers

Why you’d use it

We’ve heard that finding files in Google Drive can be difficult because there are so many ways to remember a file: by its type, by its title, by who owns it, and more. We’ve added a number of features to help finding files, including an intelligent search box for Google Drive on the web, mobile search improvements, file suggestions in Chrome, and much more.

In addition, we know how important it is to be able to easily find files shared with others while collaborating in Google Workspace. Our user research suggests that this is actually one of the most memorable aspects to use when finding a file. These updates to our search operators will enable more specific searches to find files shared with you and by you, and will help you find those files more quickly using more memorable details about the file.




Additional details

  • Searches for from: and to: will not return files that were shared prior to February 2021.
  • Vault admins have been notified separately about their changes.

Getting started

  • Admins: There is no admin control for this feature.
  • End users: The updates to search operator behavior will take place by default. Visit the Help Center to learn more about advanced search features in Google Drive.

Rollout pace

Availability

  • Available to all Google Workspace customers, and G Suite Basic and Business customers.

Resources

New ways to keep track of important notifications in Google Drive on mobile

What’s changing 

We’re introducing a new way to view and manage notifications in the Google Drive mobile app for Android. The new update lets you view your most important tasks -- all from within Drive. With this update you can: 
  • See all your notifications in one place, even without device notifications enabled 
  • Choose filters to control the types of notifications you get 
  • Delete and dismiss notifications you don’t want 
  • Take actions like share files directly from notifications 
  • Show more file information directly from the notification 


Who’s impacted 

End users 


Why it’s important 

Today, many people rely on email to keep track of important activity on their files in Google Workspace. At times, this may include searching your inbox, setting up filters, or addressing unrelated and urgent emails. The Drive notifications center saves time finding your most important notifications and makes it easier to keep track of things to do from within Google Drive. 

The updated notifications center can be accessed by going to Priority or Home 


Getting started 

  • Admins: There is no admin control for this feature. 
  • End users: Open the Google Drive app, navigate to “Priority” (or “Home” if you’re not a Google Workspace customer) and find the “Notifications” tab on the top part of the screen. All available notifications will be here, even if you don’t opt-in to device notifications. Use our Help Center to learn more about Google Drive notifications

Rollout pace 

Availability 

  • Available to all users with Google Drive Android v.2021.08 or newer. 

Resources 

Add files owned by suspended accounts to shared drives

Quick launch summary 

Shared drives can be used to store, search, and access files with a team. Admins can choose whether to let file editors in their organization move content from My Drive to shared drives, as long as the file owner is a member of the shared drive. 

However, until now it was often not possible to move files originally created by users whose accounts are suspended, as suspended accounts can’t be added as members of a shared drive. Admins can suspend an account to temporarily block a user's access to your organization's Google services (for example, you may suspend the account of a former employee). 

With this launch, file editors can now add these files to shared drives. As long as admins choose to allow users to migrate files to shared drives, content created by a user whose account is suspended by their organization’s administrator will be eligible to be added to a shared drive. 


Getting started 

  • Admins: This feature is controlled by the more general setting at Admin console > Apps > Google Workspace > Drive and Docs > Migration settings > Allow users to migrate files to shared drives. If this is turned on already, the feature will automatically become available to users when it rolls out. Use our Help Center to learn more about moving content to a shared drive
  • End users: There is no end user setting for this feature. 

Rollout pace 

Availability 

  • Available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, Education Fundamentals, and Education Plus, as well as G Suite Business and Nonprofits customers 
  • Not available to Google Workspace Business Starter and G Suite Basic customers. 

Resources 

Easily locate the source file for embedded Drive video and audio files in Google Slides

Quick launch summary

It’s now easier to find the original source file for Google Drive-stored video or audio files embedded in a Google Slides presentation. Users can click the new ‘link to Drive’ button on an embedded video or audio file to quickly open the source file in Drive. This is useful for checking access on a file before sharing a presentation more broadly.

As announced last year, the Access checker in Slides will also check the permissions on embedded video and audio files when you first insert a Drive-stored file into a presentation and again when you share your presentation.

We hope these improvements make it easy for you to ensure collaborators and viewers have the proper permissions and visibility for all Drive-stored video and audio files embedded in a Slides presentation. 

Getting started 

  • Admins: There is no admin control for this feature. 
  • End users: When editing a Google Slides presentation, click on an embedded Drive-stored video or audio or file and then click on the ‘link to Drive’ button to open the original Google Drive file.

Visit the Help Center to learn more about inserting or deleting images and videos in Slides

Rollout pace 

  • Rapid Release domains: Gradual rollout (up to 15 days for feature visibility) starting on February 24, 2021 
  • Scheduled Release domains: Extended rollout (potentially longer than 15 days) for feature visibility starting on March 2, 2021 

Availability 

  • Available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Enterprise Standard, Enterprise Plus, Education Fundamentals, and Education Plus, as well as G Suite Basic, Business, and Nonprofits customers 

Resources 

Limit Google Drive sharing to specific groups with target audiences, now generally available

What’s changing 

Admins can now define specific audiences with whom their users can link-share Google Drive files. This can help keep your organizational data secure, and make it simpler for users to share files with the right colleagues. 

The feature was previously available in beta. Based on your feedback from the beta, we’ve made two important changes: 
  • We’ve increased the maximum number of target audiences you can recommend from three to five. 
  • During the beta, only admin-created groups could be added to target audiences. Now, admins can add any group as a target audience, including groups belonging to different organizations. 
Read more below, or visit our Help Center to learn more about best practices for deploying target audiences


Who’s impacted 

Admins and end users 


Why you’d use it 

Previously, admins could choose to allow users to link-share files to either their entire domain or anyone with the link. Target audiences allow admins to define and recommend more granular link-sharing options for users. This can help to: 
  • Improve your organization’s security posture by making it harder for information to be shared more broadly than is appropriate. 
  • Guide users to share with more specific and appropriate audiences. 
  • Save users time by reducing the need to manage sharing requests from multiple individuals. 
  • Make it easier for your users to collaborate with their colleagues simply, efficiently, and securely. 

Getting started 

Admins can create a target audience in the Admin console 

Rollout pace 

Availability 

  • Available to Google Workspace Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Standard, and Enterprise Plus, as well as G Suite Business and Enterprise for Education customers 
  • Not available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Enterprise Essentials, as well as G Suite Basic, Education, and Nonprofits customers 

Resources 

Roadmap


Updates on how to sync Google Drive content to your computer

What’s changing 

In the coming months, we’ll make some changes to the solutions we offer to access Google Drive files and keep them in sync on your desktop. There is no immediate action required, but we suggest familiarizing yourself with the changes and plans described below. 

Currently, we have two sync solutions available—Drive File Stream, which was built for business users, and Backup and Sync, which was built for consumer users. 

Some of our Google Workspace customers have deployed both sync solutions, which can be confusing for end users and challenging for IT departments to manage. To address this, we're planning to unify these sync clients later in 2021, bringing the most used features from both Drive File Stream and Backup and Sync to all of our users. Check out the Additional details section below for more information, and sign up to preview the unified sync client in beta


Who’s impacted 

Admins and end users 


Why it’s important 

We’re planning to unify our sync clients and bring all of our customers the best and most used features from both Drive File Stream and Backup and Sync. This will create a powerful and unified sync client for anyone who uses Drive, whether for business or personal purposes, and will: 
  • Make it easier for admins and IT teams to manage deployments 
  • Reduce user confusion around which app to use 
  • Result in better performance for end users 
The beta for the new unified client will help organizations currently using Backup and Sync understand how the new client will work prior to it becoming generally available later in 2021. 


Additional details 


Drive File Stream is now Google Drive for desktop 
As of version 45, Drive File Stream is known as Google Drive for desktop. This is simply a name change; all functionality will remain the same and most admins and end users won’t need to take any action to continue using the client. See our release notes for more details. 


Backup and Sync functionality and users will be transitioned to a new version of Drive for desktop later this year 
Later this year, Backup and Sync users will need to transition to Drive for desktop, the unified sync client. Until then, we’re working to incorporate features from Backup and Sync into the new solution and to make it as easy as possible for users. 

We’ll announce when Drive for desktop is ready for Backup and Sync users. We will share more details later this year on how Backup and Sync users can get started with Drive for desktop. We will provide 3 months’ notice for Google Workspace admins and end users before the deadline to transition to Drive for desktop. The transition will be self-serve for end users. More details on consumer timelines will be announced closer to availability. Visit our Help Center to learn more about which features will be transitioned to Drive for desktop


Google Workspace customers can now preview the new Drive for desktop client in beta 
Google Workspace customers with end users who are currently using Backup and Sync can apply for a beta of the new unified Drive for desktop experience, which includes Backup and Sync features. Learn more, and sign up for the beta


Getting started 

  • End users: The name change from Drive File Stream to Drive for desktop will take place by default. Functionality won’t change, and there is no user action required. 
    • Note that there’s also no action required for Backup & Sync users with personal Google accounts at this time. 

Rollout pace 

Drive File Stream renaming to Drive for desktop 

Drive for desktop unified client beta 

Availability 

  • Drive for desktop is available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Enterprise Standard, and Enterprise Plus, as well as G Suite Basic, Business, Education, Enterprise for Education, Nonprofits customers, and users with personal Accounts. 
  • The beta for the new unified client is available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Enterprise Standard, and Enterprise Plus, as well as G Suite Basic, Business, Education, Enterprise for Education, and Nonprofits customers who currently have users with the Backup and Sync deployed. 

Resources 

Improving search in Google Drive on Android and iOS

What’s changing 

We’re launching new features for the Google Drive mobile apps that will help you search more quickly and efficiently. Now, Android and iOS users with the latest versions of the Drive app will be able to: 
  • See and re-run recent desktop and mobile searches. 
  • View and select intelligent suggestions as they type, including suggestions for people, past searches, and keywords, as well as recently accessed files. 


Who’s impacted 

End users 


Why it’s important 

With changes in working patterns due to COVID-19, more people need to get work done even when they’re away from their desk. Finding files quickly and easily on your phone helps ensure you can still share, review, collaborate, and create, wherever you are. 


Getting started 

  • Admins: No action needed. 
  • End users: This feature will be enabled with the latest versions of the Drive Android and iOS apps. Web and App Activity must be enabled for your account. Once the app is updated, you can use improved search by typing within the search bar. Visit our Help Center to learn more about search in Drive

Rollout pace 

  • Rapid and Scheduled release domains: Extended rollout (potentially longer than 15 days for feature visibility) starting on December 9, 2020 for users with the latest versions of the Drive Android and iOS apps  

Availability 

  • Available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Enterprise Standard, and Enterprise Plus, as well as G Suite Basic, Business, Education, Enterprise for Education, and Nonprofits customers 

Resources 

New comment interface for Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides rolling out to more devices

Quick Summary 

We’re updating the user interface for comments and action items in the Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides apps for iOS. These improvements include: 
  • Larger, clearer interface to make it easier to see comments and their context in a document. 
  • Shortcuts and gestures to help you quickly scroll through and respond to multiple comments. 
  • Quick access button to reply, “@” mention someone, and assign action items. 


These updates were previously made available on the Docs, Sheets, and Slides Android apps; they’re now rolling out to the Drive Android app and the Docs, Sheets, and Slides iOS apps. 

They’ll be made available on the Drive iOS app in the future. See below for more details on the rollout.

Getting started 

  • Admins: There is no admin control for this feature. 
  • End users: This feature will be automatically available. To get started, tap on a comment when using the Docs, Sheets, or Slides app on an iOS device. Visit the Help Center to learn more about using comments and action items on iOS devices


Rollout pace 

Docs, Sheets, and Slides on iOS 

Drive Android app

Drive iOS app
  • Stay tuned to the Workspace Updates blog for information on when this will launch to iOS devices. 

Availability 

  • Available to Google Workspace Essentials, Business Starter, Business Standard, Business Plus, Enterprise Essentials, Enterprise Standard, and Enterprise Plus, as well as G Suite Basic, Business, Education, Enterprise for Education, and Nonprofits customers 

Resources