How to Google Drive and Google Docs Online Access to Files

What is Google Drive?

Google Docs refers to the editors for Google documents, spreadsheets, presentations, drawings, and forms. These are online documents that live in the cloud and provide real-time collaboration features.

Google Drive is the place to access all your files, including both Google Docs and local files that you sync to the cloud. If you used Google Docs prior to April, 2012, Google Drive replaces and enhances what you’ve previously known as the Google Documents List.

Google Drive features:

  • Online word processing, spreadsheet, presentations, forms, drawing, database tools
  • Templates you or others create
  • Access online, anywhere, any computer through browser
  • Upload and share file types:  .doc, .xls, .ppt, and .pdf.
  • Sync files between desktop and Google Drive
  • Auto save to protect your work in progress
  • Revision history to restore a previous version
  • Files always backed up even if your computer dies
  • Share files with others using Google Drive or email
  • Collaborate on the same file at the same time
  • Import, export, convert, store any file type (5 G free, purchase additional storage)
  • Offline application when you don’t have an internet connection

Upgrade to Google Drive

Existing Google Docs users can access Google Drive then click “Get Started”. Newly upgraded Google Drive users will have Google Drive enabled.

Depending on demand, existing users may be put on a waiting list. In that case they’ll instead see a Notify me button. Watch for an email notification when they have access to Drive.

From Google Drive, users can switch between to the old Google Documents List interface and Google Drive by selecting “Temporarily use the classic look in the Google Drive gear” menu.

Google Account

An existing or new Google account is required to use Google Drive. It’s free. Use your Google account with YouTube, Picasa, Gmail and more.

Learn how to set up a new Google account

Get Started with Google Drive

Open Google Drive or Google Docs

  1. Click “Create” and select a file type to create a new file
  2. Click “Create” and select From Templates to choose a template
  3. Click “Create” and select Collections to create a new folder
  4. Click the Upload button to upload files

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