How to Search in Google Drive

Last updated: October 26, 2015 - 5:52pm EDT

Even if you use folders to organize your files on Google Drive, if you upload a lot of stuff to Google Drive, there's a chance that you might lose track of a file that you need to use.  No need to worry, though... finding a file or folder on Google Drive is a snap!

How to search Google Drive for files and folders

  1. Go to in your web browser and log in.

  2. Click in the box at the top that says "Search Drive" and type in your search terms.  As you do so, Google Drive will display a drop-down menu with files or folders in your Google Drive whose names (at least partially) match your search terms.  You can click on one of these suggestions to go right to it, or click the magnifying glass beside the search box to look for exactly what you typed in.

  3. If you want to conduct an advanced search, after typing in your search terms, click the small arrow beside the magnifying glass icon to open a drop-down window with additional options.

    Here, you can click each of the drop-down menus to filter your search by:

    FILE TYPE -- You can search for all file types, just for folders, or for a specific type of file (word document, spreadsheet, picture, video, etc.).

    OPENS WITH -- You can search for files that can be opened with a specific Google office application (i.e. Google Docs for word documents, Google Slides for presentations, Google Sheets for spreadsheets, and so on).

    OWNERSHIP -- You can search for files regardless of who owns them, or you can search only for files that you own or that somebody besides you owns.

    If you are using Google Drive as part of a business, you can also click the check box beside "Search [Domain]" to see if the file or folder that you're looking for is on the Google Drive of someone else in your business.

    When you have your search options set up the way that you want them, click the magnifying glass icon within the drop-down window (i.e. NOT the one to the right of the search box) to conduct your search.

  4. If you clicked on the magnifying glass icon to search, your search results will show up in your main Google Drive window.  Simply click on one to go to it.  Or, if Google Drive couldn't find any files or folders that matched your search terms, try an advanced search, or try different key words to search for.

That's how to search for stuff on Google Drive!  No muss, no fuss!


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