Share PDF Versions of Google Drive Files Without Converting by Hand
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You can do a lot with PDF documents on Google Drive, like converting any Google Drive document to a PDF. But did you know that you can also directly share PDF versions of your files? There is no need to convert each document to a PDF by hand every time.

There are clear benefits to taking the direct-to-PDF approach when sharing:

  • There is no need to store multiple PDF versions of the same file.
  • You don’t have to re-download the PDF version and share it every time you make a small change to the source document. Anyone with the PDF link will always get the latest version to download.
  • Collaborators can view the file in any device (a distinct advantage of the PDF format).
  • Save space on your Google Drive folder. Large PDFs eat up space!

Obviously, the automatic document-to-PDF conversion works best for files you intend to share for viewing rather than editing.

Share PDF Versions of Google Drive Files Without Converting by Hand Google Drive Convert to PDF

  1. Select the document you want to share.
  2. Click the Share icon that is located on the top right.
  3. Enter the names or email addresses of the people you want to share the document with.
  4. Choose the permission level (edit, comment, view) you want to grant.
  5. Click on Copy Link in the share box. Paste the link in your email.
  6. After you paste the link, change the end of the URL before sending it. Tweak the end of the URL, replacing edit?usp=sharing with export?format=pdf

For example:

  • Before:
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1IGHN4OvZ0ezyzxTizLViJ3HMYiVjfU1eV7c9QIWXxL8/edit?usp=sharing
  • After:
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1IGHN4OvZ0ezyzxTizLViJ3HMYiVjfU1eV7c9QIWXxL8/export?format=pdf

Send the modified PDF link. Anyone with the link can click on it to directly download the PDF version of the file. It is always a good idea to mention that you are sending a PDF document for direct download.

Have you tried this more direct way to send a PDF file via Google Drive before? Which is your favorite collaboration tip?

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