How to: Share Folders & Files from your Cloud Storage Folder

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Sharing files has become easier thanks to the use of cloud storage services. You are able to share any kinds of files you want with your friends or colleagues. These files will automatically sync with the PCs of the people that you want to view them. You can also access them by using an application or through the Internet. This sharing method is far better than emailing files or folders back and forth.

Dropbox

  • If you want to share an individual file quickly, right-click on it in your Dropbox folder or in the Dropbox web interface and select the Share Link option from the menu.

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  • You could also share your folders with other people with Dropbox. In order to do this, right-click on the desired folder in your Dropbox folder and select the Share folder option.
  • Alternatively, right-click on the folder on Dropbox’s web interface and select Invite to folder. 
  • After this, you will be redirected to Dropbox’s website, so that you enter the email addresses of the people, with who you want to share your folders. They should obviously have a Dropbox account to gain access to the folders.
  • When your friends or colleagues accept your folders, they could view them in their PCs or even copy and remove the files from their folders. As a result, you will make sure that your friends or colleagues have the same folders with you. If the folders have gone through any changes, for instance new files have been added or others have been removed, you and your selected group of people will be able to notice them immediately.
  • However, this feature, that allows only a few people to view your folders, is available with DropBox Pro or DropBox for Business accounts. In any other case, the folders can be edited from anyone, with which you have shared them.

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Google Drive

  • Google’s cloud storage service is similar with DropBox. If you want to adjust its sharing settings, right-click on the file or folder in your Google Drive, hover your mouse over the Google Drive submenu and click the Share option. You could also select this option by following the same method in the Drive’s web interface.

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  • The dialog from the Share option will provide you with a link, in which you could share the file and configure its options, so a person of your choice can view it. That file is private by default, so you can only view it. Therefore, you should configure its settings.
  • In case you want to let anyone with your file’s link to access it, click on the Change link, which is next to private, and then select the Anyone with the link option from the sharing options. You can also choose the Public on the web option. As a result, the file will be available in the web search results.
  • In order to share the file with a specific person, simply enter its email address in the bottom. Once you do it, the person will be asked to accept your invitation.
  • Furthermore, you can configure your file’s sharing settings, so you choose who can view or edit your file. Google Drive offers this feature for free, unlikely to Dropbox, which requires you to have a paid account.

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  • If you want to sync shared folders or files, go to the Incoming section of your Google Drive on the web and move those components from this section to the My Drive section. After this, your shared files and folders will be synchronized with your PC.

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Microsoft OneDrive

Unfortunately, OneDrive does not include sharing options in the File Explorer of Windows 8.1 by default. Alternatively, you could use the OneDrive Store app to adjust your settings, but using the website from your desktop might be easier. On top of that, OneDrive integration in Windows 8.1 doesn’t provide you with a method to sync shared files and folders to your desktop. To access them, you will have to use your web browser. As you can notice, your web browser is necessary for the configuration of your sharing settings. Luckily, OneDrive offers the same settings as DropBox and Google Drive do. However, if you prefer Windows integration, you should use DropBox or Google Drive.

  • To share a folder or file with your OneDrive in Windows 8.1, right-click on the item and hover your mouse over the Share with option from the menu. Then, select OneDrive from the submenu and you will be redirected in the OneDrive website, in which you will view your file or folder.
  • In addition, you can go to the OneDrive website and search for the shared files or folders.

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  • On the OneDrive website click the Share button, so that you share your files or folders.
  • Click the Invite people option to invite a specific person by its email address and select, whether if this person could view or edit your shared components.
  • Additionally, you could select, whether if the chosen people should log in with their Microsoft accounts to access the shared items or not.
  • If you want to create a link for your file, so that anyone could access it, click on the Get a link option. As a result, anybody, who knows that link, could also view your shared file.

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  • Finally, if you want to access your shared files or folders, you will need to go to the OneDrive website or to the OneDrive mobile app and search for them in the Shared section. However, be aware that those shared files can’t be synced with your desktop. Therefore, you will have to use your browser to download them or even upload some additional files to your shared folders.

File sharing has become quite simple, due to all these cloud storage services i described earlier. If you use another storage service, the sharing process will probably be similar with the ones we mentioned above.