Shared drives

Google Workspace Logo

Steps to create and manage Google Shared Drives

We have a set of Video Tutorials about Shared Drives and how to move your content into them. These will cover everything you need to know. It should take about 30 minutes to watch all of them.

Info: Overview of Shared Drives

Info: Find your Shared Drive Usage

Info: My Drive vs. Shared drives vs. Shared with me

How-to: Create a Shared Drive and manage Members

How-to: Moving content into a Shared drive

Paying for Additional Storage

We offer a passthrough pay option for Shared Drives, meaning you pay for additional storage directly to our reseller, and we arrange for the additional storage to be applied to a Shared Drive (or a few).

  • Additional storage is only offered at $1,440 annually for 10 TB of storage. There are no other smaller quantities available to purchase. You can purchase multiple blocks of 10 TB.
  • Additional paid storage can only be applied to Shared Drives. We can also split each 10 TB block up to 10 Shared Drives, in whole TBs only.
  • When you decide you would like to pursue the Passthrough Pay Option, please email us at Let us know you want to use the Passthrough Pay Option. We need to know the name of your destination Shared Drive(s), and we also need to know which accounts (email addresses) will be moving content into the Shared Drive and therefore will reduce their storage below their storage limit.
  • Once you've received confirmation that your Shared Drive capacity has been increased to the paid limit, you can move all your content into the Shared Drive.

Expanded Shared Drives

Expanded Shared Drives are available for free, with either a 150 GB or 1 TB maximum capacity. Expanded Shared Drives are available first-come-first-served until we can evaluate the ratio of demand vs. allocation availability. We can only offer one 1 TB Expanded Shared Drive per unit/group, or per 40 employees, whichever makes the most sense for your request150 GB Expanded Shared Drive availability is more flexible.

  • Expanded Shared Drives are available primarily for department or unit use. 
  • The content must be collaborative documents and content that needs to persist: it should continue to be available regardless or who joins or leaves the university.
  • Research data sets, non-collaborative data, and backups/archives of any kind are not eligible for Expanded Shared Drive storage.
  • 1 TB Expanded Shared Drives will be approved for collaborative content that needs to persist, and equal consumption across all the departments and units  on campus will be considered before approval.
  • 150 GB Expanded Shared Drives are not limited by equal consumption - they will be approved for collaborative content that needs to persist and are limited to one per unit/group.
  • If you'd like to request an Expanded Shared Drive, please complete this form

What is a Shared Drive?

Shared Drives are special folders in Google Drive that you can use to store and collaborate on files within a department/unit/team. Unlike in My Drive, Shared Drive files are owned by the department instead of individuals. If members leave, the files stay in the Shared Drive so your group can keep sharing content and information without interruption. Additionally, Shared Drives exist outside the Life Cycle limits of individual Google accounts and have more granular permissions and roles.

Shared Drives Login

Google Drive Logo

Once you are a member of a Shared Drive you can access from the Drive interface

At a Glance

Key benefits:

  • Files are owned by the department/unit/team instead of individuals so that if a member leaves the Shared drive or the organization, the files remain in the Shared drive. 

  • All members of a Shared drive have access to all content in the drive

  • If you are using a Google Group to manage the membership or partial membership of a Shared drive, you can easily control access to the Shared drive by adding or removing the individual from the Google Group. 

  • You can use Google for Desktop to access your Shared drives. 

  • A Shared drive has five levels of permissions or roles for the members:
    • Viewer, Commenter, Contributor (Add and edit files), Content manager (Add, edit, move, delete and share content), and Manager (Manage content, people, and settings). For a more detailed look at permissions and roles, visit Google Shared drive permissions and roles

Known limitations:

  • Requires a temporary special permission for moving Folders from My Drive into a Shared drive. You can request this permission by completing this form

    • You will need to understand the security risks and potential permission changes on files.

    • You will need to be aware of potential content move failures or restrictions. See Google’s help document, Move your organization's content to shared drives for more information. 

  • Cannot use the file upload feature in a Google form owned by the Shared drive because folks completing the form are not members of the Shared drive.