Drive File Stream is a new feature in Google Drive, meant for business use. It’s a desktop application that enables easy access to the files in Google Drive, without downloading them, with Mac and PC. With Drive File Stream you can see all the content in your My Drive and Team Drives from your computer resource management - Finder in Mac and Explorer in PC, for example.


Drive File Stream organises and attaches Google Drive virtually to the computer like a network drive. It’s capable of handling much larger content volume than a traditional sync, because it requires considerably less space from the hard drive. It is also more secure, as files are not downloaded to the computer by default.


With File Stream you can:

  • Quickly see all the files in Google Drive and Team Drives with Finder / Explorer

  • Browse and organise files in Drive without downloading them, less hard drive stress

  • Choose which files or folders to use in offline mode

  • Quickly open, edit and save files directly in known programs, such as Microsoft Office or Adobe Photoshop


How to install File Stream:


Log in to: https://drive.google.com/drive/my-drive and head over to the upper right corner and click the cogwheel. Then click “Download Drive File Stream for Mac / Windows”.



A window will open, from where you choose whether to download File Stream for Mac or Windows. Download the correct one and install File Stream from the downloaded file. When the installation is complete you may have to launch File Stream yourself but usually it opens automatically once the installation is finished. After opening the File Stream, it asks you to log in to your Google account and then opens a window in browser, where you accept that File Stream can use your Google account. After accepting, a new drive that looks like external drive, will appear in your resource management.


MAC users: You might have to go to System Settings -> Security and Privacy and click Allow on the lower part of the window before you can login to Google via File Stream. The new High Sierra update wants you to allow File Stream before it works.



You can now use your drive files with desktop applications. Notice that all the Google documents (Sheets, Docs, Forms and Slides) always open in browser, even when opened from File Stream.