Tag Archives: Google Drive

Folder sharing in shared drives now generally available

Quick launch summary 

You can now share folders in shared drives. Previously, this feature was available in beta

Shared drives empower teams and organizations to store, access, and collaborate on files. With this launch, you can share a specific folder with other users, or upgrade member access to provide users with additional permissions on specific folders within shared drives. 

At launch, the feature is available via Drive on the web, the Drive API, Drive File Stream (v. 42+) and the latest Google Drive apps for iOS (v. 4.2020.36202+) and Android (v. 2.20.321+). It will be available through the native file system on ChromeOS with an upcoming release

See our beta announcement for more details and examples of how you could use the feature

Some updates and reminders from the beta post: 
  • Commenter role available in My Drive: In order to align My Drive and shared drives, ‘Commenter’ roles will now be available for folders in My Drive. Previously, only Viewer and Editor were available.
  • Manager role required to move folders between shared drives: As explained in our previous post, moving folders between shared drives are only allowed for users who are managers on both the original as well as the target location. 

Getting started 

Rollout pace 

Availability

  • Available to G Suite Business, G Suite Enterprise, G Suite for Education, G Suite Enterprise for Education, G Suite for Nonprofits, and G Suite Essentials customers 
  • Not available to G Suite Basic customers

Resources 

Roadmap 

Google Drive trash items will be automatically deleted after 30 days starting on October 13, 2020

What’s changing 

Starting October 13, 2020, we’re changing the retention policies for items in the Trash in Google Drive. With this new policy, any file that is put into a Google Drive trash will be automatically deleted after 30 days. Previously, trashed items would be retained indefinitely until the trash was emptied by the user. 

Any files already in a user’s trash on October 13, 2020 will remain there for 30 days. After the 30-day period, files that have been in the trash for longer than 30 days will begin to be automatically deleted. 


Who’s impacted 

End users 


Why it’s important 

This change matches the policies of other G Suite products and services, such as Gmail. This will help ensure behavior is consistent and predictable for users across G Suite products, and will help make sure that items users trash are actually deleted as expected. 


Additional details 

Policy change notes 
  • Admins can still restore items deleted from a user’s trash for up to 25 days for active users
  • Retention policies set by admins in Google Vault are not affected by this change, unless they become obsolete as they are now redundant. Learn more about retention rules for Drive
  • These changes affect items that are trashed from any device and any platform. 
  • Files deleted via Drive File Stream will be purged from the system trash after 30 days. There is no impact to Backup and Sync behavior. 
  • Files in shared drives trash are already automatically deleted after 30 days. 
  • Items in trash will still continue to consume quota. 

In-app notification for users 
As this policy takes effect, we will show a banner to users with details of the change. The policy change will take effect regardless of whether a user sees or acknowledges the banner. We will be showing in-app notifications in Drive starting today and in our Editors products (e.g., Google Docs and Google Forms) starting September 29. 


Getting started 

Rollout pace 

Availability 

  • Applicable to all G Suite customers 

Resources 

Office editing on Android brings G Suite collaboration to Microsoft Office files

Quick launch summary 

We’re making Office editing available on Android. This feature brings the collaborative and assistive features of G Suite to your Microsoft Office files when you’re using your Android device. Already available on the web, it: 
  • Allows you to edit, comment, and collaborate on Microsoft Office files using Google Docs’, Sheets’, and Slides’ powerful real-time collaboration tools. 
  • Improves sharing options, improves sharing controls, and reduces the need to download and email file attachments. 
  • Streamlines workflows by reducing the need to convert file types. 
Office editing will replace QuickOffice (sometimes known as Office Compatibility Mode), which has more limited functionality and collaboration capabilities. See more about Office editing in our announcement for the feature on the web. 


Getting started 

Rollout pace 

Availability 

  • Available to all G Suite customers and users with personal Google Accounts 

Resources 

Office editing on Android brings G Suite collaboration to Microsoft Office files

Quick launch summary 

We’re making Office editing available on Android. This feature brings the collaborative and assistive features of G Suite to your Microsoft Office files when you’re using your Android device. Already available on the web, it: 
  • Allows you to edit, comment, and collaborate on Microsoft Office files using Google Docs’, Sheets’, and Slides’ powerful real-time collaboration tools. 
  • Improves sharing options, improves sharing controls, and reduces the need to download and email file attachments. 
  • Streamlines workflows by reducing the need to convert file types. 
Office editing will replace QuickOffice (sometimes known as Office Compatibility Mode), which has more limited functionality and collaboration capabilities. See more about Office editing in our announcement for the feature on the web. 


Getting started 

Rollout pace 

Availability 

  • Available to all G Suite customers and users with personal Google Accounts 

Resources 

Collaborate with people who are not using a Google account in Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Sites

What’s changing 

We’re making visitor sharing—secure, pincode-based collaboration with people who do not have a Google account—generally available. This means you can share items with non-Google accounts, enabling them to view, comment on, or edit content in Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Sites using a secure pincode. 

Visitor sharing was previously available in beta, and will replace the current admin setting to allow users in your organization to send sharing invitations.  '

We’ll introduce the new feature according to this timeline: 
  • August 31, 2020: The setting to control sharing with people who are not using a Google account will begin to appear in the Admin console. This setting may be on or off by default depending on your current settings. See “Getting started” below to learn more. This setting will not start taking effect for users until September 8, 2020 (for Rapid release domains) or September 28, 2020 (for Scheduled release domains). 
  • September 8, 2020: Users in Rapid Release domains will be able to use the new feature, if enabled by their admin. 
  • September 28, 2020: Users in Scheduled Release domains will be able to use the new feature, if enabled by their admin. 

Who’s impacted 

Admins and end users 


Why you’d use it 

G Suite customers often work with partners outside of their company. These external users, or “visitors,” don’t always have Google accounts, making it more difficult for G Suite and non-Google users to collaborate seamlessly and securely. 

This new feature will help ensure smooth and secure collaboration with visitors through: 
  • Rich collaboration—including comments, edits, and more⁠—with anyone you need to work with, regardless of whether they have a Google account. 
  • Audit logging for collaboration with visitors, so that all interactions are monitored and recorded. 
  • Ability to revoke access and remove collaborators as needed. 
  • Reduced need to download, email, or create separate files to work with external users who don’t have Google accounts. 
If the visitor chooses to create a G Suite account with their email address, their collaboration and activity history will be preserved after the account is created. 



Additional details 

Visitor sharing will not be supported for Cloud Identity users. With this launch, Cloud Identity users will only be able to share with non-Google recipients by sending invites that allow users to preview file contents in a read-only mode without signing in to Google accounts. 


Getting started 

Admins: 
  • Sharing outside of your organization to users with non-Google accounts will be ON by default if you currently allow users in your organization to send sharing invitations to people outside your organization who are not using a Google account.
  • Sharing outside of your organization to users with non-Google accounts will be OFF by default if you currently do not do not allow sharing outside your organization, or use domain whitelisting, Use our Help Center to learn more about sharing to non-Google accounts
  • Visitor sharing will be controlled by new settings at Admin console > Apps > G Suite > Drive and Docs > Sharing Settings. See image below. The new settings can be controlled at the domain or OU level. 


End users: Visit our Help Center to learn more about visitor sharing. Visitors can use our Help Center to learn how to delete their visitor session



Rollout pace 

Admin console setting: 
End user feature availability: 

Availability 

  • Available to G Suite Business, G Suite Enterprise, G Suite for Education, G Suite Enterprise for Education, G Suite for Nonprofits, and G Suite Essentials customers 
  • Not available to G Suite Basic, Cloud Identity customers, or users with personal accounts 

Resources 

Roadmap 

Expanding shortcuts in Google Drive, reducing unorganized files

What’s changing 

Earlier this year, we made shortcuts in Google Drive generally available. Shortcuts simplified file and folder structures in Drive by creating pointers to items, rather than having items which existed in multiple locations. This helps ensure easy access to files and folders for different users while reducing possible confusion about how files are owned, managed, and updated. 

Now, we want to share three updates to our plans for shortcuts and file locations: 
  • Expanding use of shortcuts: Removing some specific actions which still created multiple locations for files. 
  • A migration update: More details on migration of existing multiple-location files to shortcuts. 
  • Improving file management and reducing “unorganized” files: Ensuring files which have their last location removed are now placed in the owner’s My Drive folder. See more details below. 


Who’s impacted 

Admins and end users 


Why it’s important 

Expanding the use of shortcuts will increase the consistency of behavior and make it easier for users to understand how their Drive is structured. 


Additional details 


Expanding use of shortcuts 

After launching shortcuts, there were still some ways for users to add files to multiple locations. We’re now stopping some of those to create a more consistent experience across different platforms and ways of using Drive. Specific changes include: 
  • When using Drive on the web, the keyboard shortcut Shift+Z on a shared file used to place the file in multiple locations. Now, when a single file or multiple items are selected, Shift+Z will create a shortcut instead. However, if a single folder is selected, Shift-Z will still add another location for the folder to ensure continued compatibility with offline access via Backup and Sync
  • When using Drive on the web, making someone else the owner of a file used to create multiple locations for the file. Now, if the new owner can see the file’s existing location, it will remain there. If the new owner can’t see the existing location, it will be moved from its current location to the My Drive folder of the new owner, and a shortcut will be created in its place 


A migration update 

In our original announcement, we mentioned that we would be migrating existing files in multiple locations to shortcuts. We’d like to share more details on these plans: 
  • We will start this migration some time in 2021. We’ll announce the migration on the G Suite Updates blog and with an in-product notification banner at least 2 weeks before it starts. 
  • The migration will remove all but one location of files that currently are in multiple locations, and will replace the removed files with shortcuts. 
  • The migration heuristics will be based primarily on original ownership, but will also take signals about access and activity on other parent folders into account, to ensure the least possible disruption for collaboration.  
  • File access and ownership will not be impacted. 
  • The migration will be automatic and won’t require manual work from users or admins. 

Improving file management and reducing “unorganized” files 

A file can become unorganized when its last previous location is removed. For example, this could happen if you had added a file to a shared folder that was later deleted by the owner of the shared folder. 

Previously, in those situations you would only have been able to find the file by specifically searching for it, not by browsing for it. This led to some instances where it appeared a file was lost. Now, we will add these items to the owner’s My Drive. This change will make it easier to locate files which have had their locations removed


API updates reminder 

Earlier this year, we announced changes to the Drive API which would support the transition to file shortcuts. These changes will start to go into effect on September 30, 2020. Read more details about the API changes here


Getting started 

Rollout pace 

Expanded use of shortcuts and improved file management: 
Migration of existing files in multiple locations: 
  • Will not start until 2021, and will be announced in advance on the G Suite Updates blog and with an in-product notification banner. 

Availability 

  • Available to all G Suite customers and users with personal accounts 

Resources 

Use target audiences in beta to limit Google Drive sharing to specific groups

What’s changing 

We’re launching a new feature that enables admins to define specific audiences that their users can link-share Drive files with. This gives admins more influence over who their users share files with, and helps to protect organizational data by reducing the potential for accidental oversharing of files. Target audiences is initially available in an open beta. 


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 means that admins can prevent oversharing without hampering collaboration—since target audiences are defined and recommended by their admins, users can be confident that sharing files with a target audience is appropriately broad and secure. It can also help users share files more quickly, as target audiences allow for the ease of link-sharing, but with more specific audiences. This can reduce the need for users to manually add specific users and groups and respond to individual access requests. 

For example, an admin could set up an audience of all finance team members. When someone on that team enabled link sharing for a file, they’d see an option to allow link-sharing to anyone on the finance team. Members of the team could access the link immediately, while anyone outside of the team would have to ask permission before they could view the file. 


Getting started 

  • Admins: Find Target audience settings at Admin console > Directory > Target audiences. You can assign target audiences on the group or OU level. Visit the Help Center to learn more about managing target audiences for your organization
  • End users: There is no end user setting for this feature. If enabled by an admin, users will see target audiences available to them as link-sharing options for Drive, as indicated in the image above. 
Admins can create a target audience in the Admin console 

Rollout pace 

Availability 

  • Available to G Suite Business, G Suite Enterprise, and G Suite Enterprise for Education 
  • Not available to G Suite Basic, G Suite for Education, G Suite Essentials, G Suite Enterprise Essentials, and G Suite for Nonprofits customers 

Resources 

Roadmap 

Use target audiences in beta to limit Google Drive sharing to specific groups

What’s changing 

We’re launching a new feature that enables admins to define specific audiences that their users can link-share Drive files with. This gives admins more influence over who their users share files with, and helps to protect organizational data by reducing the potential for accidental oversharing of files. Target audiences is initially available in an open beta. 


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 means that admins can prevent oversharing without hampering collaboration—since target audiences are defined and recommended by their admins, users can be confident that sharing files with a target audience is appropriately broad and secure. It can also help users share files more quickly, as target audiences allow for the ease of link-sharing, but with more specific audiences. This can reduce the need for users to manually add specific users and groups and respond to individual access requests. 

For example, an admin could set up an audience of all finance team members. When someone on that team enabled link sharing for a file, they’d see an option to allow link-sharing to anyone on the finance team. Members of the team could access the link immediately, while anyone outside of the team would have to ask permission before they could view the file. 


Getting started 

  • Admins: Find Target audience settings at Admin console > Directory > Target audiences. You can assign target audiences on the group or OU level. Visit the Help Center to learn more about managing target audiences for your organization
  • End users: There is no end user setting for this feature. If enabled by an admin, users will see target audiences available to them as link-sharing options for Drive, as indicated in the image above. 
Admins can create a target audience in the Admin console 

Rollout pace 

Availability 

  • Available to G Suite Business, G Suite Enterprise, and G Suite Enterprise for Education 
  • Not available to G Suite Basic, G Suite for Education, G Suite Essentials, G Suite Enterprise Essentials, and G Suite for Nonprofits customers 

Resources 

Roadmap 

New beta adds IRM controls for DLP to help protect sensitive content in documents

What’s changing 

You can now automatically restrict the ability to download, print, and copy sensitive documents through data loss prevention (DLP) rules. These new DLP-driven information rights management (IRM) controls, currently available in beta, will make it more difficult for users to make copies of documents that might expose sensitive content. 

G Suite DLP rules already enabled admins to limit the sharing of documents directly. However, users could make copies of documents by printing it, copying it to unmanaged locations, or downloading it to physical media. These copies were not subject to the same sharing controls, increasing the risk of that content being exposed. 

There are already controls so that document owners and editors can manually prevent viewers and commenters from printing, copying, or downloading their files. However, this placed the responsibility of selecting the correct restriction on a file on end users. 


Who’s impacted 

Admins and end users 


Why it’s important 

The new IRM controls will help ensure that only a single version of sensitive documents exists, and therefore that company DLP policies will help protect it. This could help reduce the potential for accidental or intentional exposure of sensitive content in documents. It also reduces the need for end-users to recognize and manually adjust the IRM settings for files, creating a more scalable and automated process to protect your organization’s content. 


Additional details 

Admin setting for IRM in the DLP rule creation workflow 
When you’re creating or editing a DLP rule, there will be a new option: “Beta: Disable download, print, and copy for commenters and viewers.” If selected, this will prevent downloading, printing, and copying of the document unless the user has editor or owner permissions. Note that this is only available as part of our new Drive DLP system
Admins can add IRM controls to DLP rules 


Users will see new notifications on affected files 
Document editors and owners will see a new note when in the settings section of the sharing screen, as pictured below. Users with view or comment access will not be able to download, copy, or print the document—these options will be greyed out for them. Note that this only places limits on “viewer” or “commenter” roles within Drive. 
Document owners and editors will see a new note when they try to share the document 
Document viewers and commenters will have print, download, and copy options greyed out 


Getting started 

  • Admins: This feature will be OFF by default and can be enabled as part of new and existing DLP rules. Visit the Help Center to learn more about how to create new DLP rules and see FAQs about the Drive DLP IRM beta
  • End users: There is no end user setting for this feature. 

Rollout pace 

  • This feature is available now for all users. 

Availability 

  • Available to G Suite Enterprise, G Suite Enterprise for Education, G Suite for Education, and G Suite Enterprise Essentials customers 
  • Not available to G Suite Basic, G Suite Business, and G Suite for Nonprofits, and G Suite Essentials customers 

Resources 

Roadmap 

Migration of Drive DLP rules to new system

What’s changing 


Now, we’re going to migrate any rules you created in the legacy DLP system to this new system. After this migration, you should use the new DLP system to create and manage your organization’s DLP rules for Drive. There are three key things to know: 
  • You can manually migrate your rules to the new system any time before August 10. 
  • Starting on August 10, we’ll automatically move any unmigrated rules to the new system. 
  • These migrations relate to rule management in the Admin console only. There’s no change in how the rules will be enforced for end users. 

Use our Help Center to learn more about the migration, and see more details below. 


Who’s impacted 

Admins with privileges to manage DLP rules. 


Why it’s important 

By bringing all your rules into the new DLP system, we’re making it easier to manage your DLP rules and take advantage of the improvements that the new system offers. 


Additional details 

Learn more about the new DLP system 
The new Drive DLP system offers more advanced policies, additional admin insights, and more flexible deployment than the legacy system. The new Drive DLP functionality can be found at Admin console > Security > Data Protection

To learn more, see our launch announcement for the new DLP system or visit our Help Center to learn more about the new DLP for Drive. You can also visit our Help Center to learn more about the migration to the new DLP system


User-controlled migration available now 
Currently, you can manually migrate your rules to the new UI by manually creating a new rule in the new Drive DLP and then deleting the legacy DLP rule. During that time, you won’t be able to update your rules, but they will still be in effect for end users. 

Note that on August 3, customers who have yet to create any legacy Drive DLP rules will not be able to create rules in the legacy system. Existing customers can continue to create and modify rules up until their migration. Rules can be created in the new system at any time. 

Before migration takes place, you’ll see a banner about the upcoming changes 


Automatic migration will start on August 10 
If you haven’t manually migrated your rules by August 10, we’ll start to automatically migrate them to the new system. Migration is expected to complete for most customers by the end of August 2020. A small subset of customers will be migrated in September 2020. Once started for your domain, the migration process can take up to 24 hours, and during that time you won’t be able to modify rules in the legacy system. 

Once the migration is completed for your domain, you will see a banner announcing that your DLP rules have moved when you go to the legacy rules location at Admin console > Security > Rules. At that point, you will no longer be able to create DLP rules in the legacy system. 

When migration is complete, you’ll see a notification banner in the Admin console 

Getting started 

Rollout pace 

Automatic rule migration: 
  • Rapid and Scheduled Release domains: Extended rollout (potentially longer than 15 days for feature visibility) starting on August 10, 2020. Migration is expected to complete for most customers by the end of August 2020. A small subset of customers will be migrated in September 2020. 

Availability 

  • Available to G Suite Enterprise, G Suite for Education, and G Suite Enterprise for Education customers. 
  • Not available to G Suite Basic, G Suite Business, and G Suite for Nonprofits, G Suite Essentials, and G Suite Enterprise Essentials customers. 

Resources