How to move a folder from My Drive to Shared Drive

Google Drive makes it possible for you to move items from My Drive to a Shared Drive. This can be especially useful if you need to share a large number of files with your colleagues or if you need to collaborate on a project.

But there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Only an Administrator can move folders.

  • To allow users within your company to move files they don't own, you need to enable the option "Allow users to migrate files to Shared Drives".

  • Files or folders belonging to an external user cannot be moved, even by an administrator. When you attempt to move a folder containing files owned by external users, Google will instead generate shortcuts for those folders/files.

  • File access might be altered during the move process .

Let's examine these in more detail in this article.

How to move a folder to a Shared Drive if you are not an admin?

That’s possible using Folgo's Move to Shared Drive” feature (it’s still preferable to have the option “Allow users to migrate files to shared drives” activated on your Google Workspace domain).

Admin role

An admin role is necessary to accomplish several actions within Google Drive:

  • move folders from My Drive to Shared Drive

  • allow users to move files they don’t own to Shared Drives

To perform this last task:

  1. In the admin console, go to Apps > Google Workspace > Settings for Drive and Docs > Migration Settings

  2. Enable Allow users to migrate files to shared drives

💡This setting can be implemented domain-wide, or only to specific groups or Organizational Unit.

Learn more about the admin role.

Unmovable items

When a file or a folder is owned by an external user, it is considered unmovable. If an item cannot be moved to a Shared Drive, a shortcut to this item will be created while the original item will be moved to its owner’s My Drive.

⚠️ When the number of unmovable items exceed 25 items or 10% of the total number of items, the folder move is rejected.

Here is a summary of the type of items that can and cannot be moved:

* A shortcut will be created.

** Only if the option “Allow users to migrate files to Shared Drives” is enabled.

How to move any file to a Shared Drive, even external files?

Folgo’s “Move to Shared Drive” feature gives you several options to handle unmovable items: create a shortcut, create a copy of the file or send a move request to the owner!

The last option even works with external owners, meaning that with Folgo all files are movable to Shared Drives, without restriction. With Folgo, a move is never rejected, even if the quantity of unmovable items exceeds 25 or 10%.

Folgo also provides an email report before moving a folder with the list of file owners and the number of files that are not directly movable by you.

Content access changes

You may notice significant changes to the content's access when moving a folder from My Drive to a Shared Drive. This can be due to restrictive permissions. Indeed, permissions within Shared Drive are inherently expansive. For example, if a user has access to a folder in a Shared Drive, he will necessarily have access to all of its content (subfolders and files). Besides, if he has Editor access on this specific folder, his rights cannot be reduced to Viewer on one of the subfolders. However, a user can have increased access to some items, like being Commenter on a folder and Editor on one of its subfolders.

Folgo’s Inspect and Analyze feature is really useful in preventing content access changes, especially when dealing with restrictive permissions.

If you perform a scan of your folder before moving it to your Shared Drive, you will be able to easily identify problematic items through the dedicated column of the report and have the chance to rearrange it to fit Shared Drive’s requirements.

Learn more about our Inspect and Analyze feature.

Other limitations

Shared Drives have a limit of 20 levels of nested folders. Folgo will let you know before the move if you exceed this limit.