Google Drive is a super useful tool used by many, but it can be tedious to open your browser and navigate through the process of uploading and downloading files every time you want to use it.
Did you know that you can pin Google Drive directly to Windows File Explorer instead? This way, you can always access files in your Google Drive without adding extra steps to your workflow. Here’s how to do it.
How to add Google Drive to Windows File Explorer
The first thing you need to do to add Google Drive to Windows File Explorer is to download Google Drive for Desktop. You can find it on the Google Drive downloads page or by navigating to the downloads tab on the Google Drive website.
After downloading the installer and double-clicking it to run, you will be greeted with the Google Drive installer window. There are a few options here asking if you want to add desktop shortcuts for Google Drive and some other parts of the Google Office suite. Whether you add them or not depends on your preferences. click To install keep going.
From there, the Google Drive installer will prompt you to do so Sign in with the browser. This will take you to a new window with your default browser where you can log in. If you’re already signed in with your Google account in this browser, this should be a fairly easy process.
Eventually, the Google Drive installer will prompt you to do so Make sure you downloaded this app from Google. This is just a security check that you can safely ignore. All you have to do is click on the log in button at the bottom right of the command prompt.
From there you have now successfully installed Google Drive for Desktop. Google Drive for Desktop automatically adds itself to your file explorer for you, which means you’re done and ready to go.
Some important Google Drive settings you may want to adjust
When you open Windows File Explorer, you’ll find your Google Drive on the left under the “This PC” heading. It’s also automatically added to your quick access bar if you’ve set that up as well.
You can easily stop here if you wish, but there are a few key settings you may want to adjust before proceeding. For example, there are two different ways to sync Google Drive to your computer that you might want to take a look at.
The first option is streaming files. That means all your Google Drive files are stored only in the cloud. The folder on your computer is really just a virtual drive that gives you quick and easy access to your Google Drive. This uses virtually no actual disk space, but means the files are not available offline. This is perfect when your Google Drive is getting full and you don’t know what to do.
The alternative is file mirroring. That means all your Google Drive files are stored in the cloud but also on your computer. That is, you are effectively downloading the contents of your Google Drive when it updates. This obviously uses up more disk space than the alternative, but it means you can access your files anywhere.
The choice is ultimately yours and what you need from Google Drive in your file explorer. You can switch between these settings as you see fit, and accessing them is easy. All you have to do is open Google Drive for Desktop from your taskbar and click on the cog at the top right of the bubble that appears.
After that, you should be in a window labeled Google Drive Settings. If you click on the Google Drive header on the left, you can make that selection from there.
That’s all there is to it. You should now be able to access Google Drive directly from Windows File Explorer. A much better solution than figuring out how to create a direct link for your Google Drive files, don’t you think?
Get more out of the cloud with Google Drive on Windows
As you can see, getting Google Drive in Windows File Explorer is a simple process once you know what to do. It’s just a simple download, and then you can access Google Drive anytime, any way you want, even offline.