You can use Google AND Microsoft Together
You can add Google Drive to Microsoft Office now. It can save you time, particularly if you’re saving files in Office formats inside Google Drive. I’ve tested the setup. Here’s a screencast to get started. Set up is quick, three steps in about two minutes. There are a few issues to know before you start using it, though.
How to Add Google Drive to Microsoft Word (and Microsoft Office)
The video above includes these steps.
STEP 1: Close Microsoft Office. (It cannot be running to do this.)
Click here to download the Google Drive Plugin for Office. This plugin is only available for Microsoft Windows Computers. (Sorry Mac.)
STEP 3: Open Microsoft Office
It will have you enter your credentials for Google.
How to Open, Save, and Use Files Between Microsoft Word and Google Drive
Here’s where it gets a bit tricky, so I’m splitting this up for you into four ways you can use the files together.
A. Opening Files from Google Drive
- In Microsoft Word, you click “open files.”
- Then, when you click “Open from Google Drive,” you’ll see your Google Drive.
- Google Drive files will look like a small blue square. Microsoft Word files will have the blue W.
- If you open a Google Doc file, it will open on the Web in Google Drive.
B. Opening a Google Doc file into Google Drive
- When it opens the file, just go to File –> Download As –> Microsoft Word (.docx).
- Then, you’ll just open into Microsoft Word (If you’re using Google Chrome, just click the file at the bottom.)
- When you open the file, you’ll want to click “enable editing” so you can work with the file.
C. The Google Drive Ribbon in Microsoft Word
After installing the plugin, in the 2013/2016 versions of Microsoft Office, Google Drive now has a ribbon.
In the video, I go over each of the buttons.
- Save to Drive lets you save into Google Drive. It will be saved as a Word file. The sharing settings for the folder you save it into will apply to any new documents you save, so pay attention to where you’re saving your files!
- You can Open from the ribbon.
- Share. You can change sharing settings from the ribbon. (If you’re a school, it will pull up all the emails of others using Google Apps for education.)
- Save As. You can save it as another name.
- Rename. Just rename the file.
- Move. Move the file to somewhere else in your Google Drive.
- Settings. This powerful tool will help some of you. You can tell the ribbon only to show Microsoft Word files or to show Word and Google Doc files. This way, if you just want to use Microsoft Word files, you can set it up this way. (It may prevent confusion for some beginners at your school.)
D. Google Drive and Microsoft Word Files
When you open the Microsoft Word files in Google Drive, remember that you just have two options: View Only and Edit as Google Docs.
- View Only. You can only view the file, you cannot edit it.
- Edit as Google Docs. This button makes a COPY of your file. You’re now editing this as a Google Doc file.
- Add something on the end of your files until you get the hang of the two programs working together.
- Practice moving files around.
- You might want to add a folder for your Word files to separate them from your Google Drive files.
- Be careful about sharing. When you share to a folder, it shares it with everyone who has access to that folder. Make sure beginners understand this.