Feb 6, 2017

[TIP:Google Drive] Differences between Transferring ownership of documents, Copying Document, and Creating a virtual file for a document?

What are differences between Transferring ownership of documents, Copying Document, and Creating a virtual file for a document?

(Subtitle: Cautions for Collaboration in Google Drive)

This is one of the key issues we hear from Google Drive-intensive customers.

“"Folders and files created by me in My Drive are shared between departments, projects, and external team members, and shared files sometimes disappear or disappear unintentionally when collaborating. How can I find and restore these files? "

There are things to be aware of when creating and collaborating with others by creating a file or folder on Google Drive.

  1. Be careful when transferring or deleting files or folders that someone shared with you to My Drive
    1. When you move a file that someone else has shared with you in My Drive, never drag it to another folder.
    2. This moved file will disappear from the shared owner's folder and all shared team members' folders. (This is called an orphaned file.) Due to this phenomenon, even the owner who created the document may lose the file in the folder.
    3. When you move a shared file to another folder in My Drive, you must use it to 'CTL key (ALT' key on Mac) + drag mouse '(copy virtual file).
    4. When copying a virtual file, '+' icon will be shown.
    5. Virtual file copying means that the original is kept in its original location and is virtually added to my drive. In other words, it is not to copy the owner's file to make a copy, but to make the link information of some kind of file be added to another place. When the virtual file is modified, the original is also automatically modified.


  1. Differences between transferring file ownership and copying files
    1. One of the special features of Google Drive is that there is an "Owner" You can delete documents or folders created by the owner only.
    2. When you view detailed information for a file, you'll see who is "owner" and who has shared it. The owner can pass ownership of the document to anyone else who wants it (only those who have a Google Account on the same domain).
    3. When an employee leaves the company, the administrator can transfer all the files in the drive of the leaving person to another person in the same domain. If you want to transfer it in part, you must manually transfer the ownership by selecting the documents or files in My Drive (do not copy the drive but transfer ownership)
    4. The major difference between making copies of documents and transferring ownership is that,
      1. If you make a copy - the revision history, the version history, and the comment history of the  document will be removed.
      2. If you pass over ownership - The original is not copied and there is only one copy and all the record information (revision history, version history, comment history, etc.) existing in the document is preserved.
    5. Transfer of ownership is only allowed within the same domain. Users with personal gmail accounts can transfer ownership to and from individual gmail users. For example, kim@gmail.com can transfer documents to hong@gmail.com.

  1. Difference between Copy File and Virtual File creation (CONTROL Key + Mouse Drag-in-Drag-out)
    1. One of the other features of Google Drive is the ability to create virtual files.
    2. Generally, a file copy means it make a duplicated file.
    3. Creating a virtual file means that there is only one file in the original, and not copying, but creating only the link information of the original file.
    4. You can create virtual files to as many folders as you want, and when you modify the virtual file, the original is also automatically modified at the same time. Of course, if you delete this virtual file, the original will also disappear.

  2. How to search and restore orphaned files (files that were not deleted but could not be found in My Drive)
    1. One of the things that can happen only with Google Drive is that you can have orphaned files.
    2. Scenarios for Orphaned files
      1. The owner kim@mycompany.com shares the folder Project-A to hong@mycompany.com and the owner creates the document "Agenda" in the Project-A folder
      2. the hong@mycompany.com deletes the Agenda document from the Project-A folder or moves it to another folder.
      3. If this happens, the "Agenda" document will disappear from the folder "Project-A" in the owner's drive.
      4. These files are called orphaned files: this "Agenda" document can not be found in the trash because it was not physically deleted because it was not deleted by the owner.
    3. How to find and restore an orphaned file or folder
      1. Search with "is:unorganized owner: me" in the search box of the owner drive and the search result is displayed, you can select the file or folder and move to the desired folder.


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