How to Copy “Shared With Me” Files from One Google Drive to Another

Want to copy the files from the "Shared with me" folder in Google Drive to your new account but don’t know where to start? This comprehensive guide will explain in detail how you can transfer the documents that other people have shared with you.

When your classmates, co-workers, friends, or family share documents with your Google account, these files appear in the “Shared with me” folder in your Drive. You may be using them often, but you actually do not own them.

If you need to switch from one Google account to another, you’d probably want to transfer all documents to your new Drive. That includes the files that you have created or uploaded yourself and the documents that are shared with you.

Your first intention might be to use Google Takeout, but, since shared files are owned by other people, Google does not include them in the export file.

So how exactly do you copy “Shared with me” files then?

The easy way would be to copy all your documents together using VaultMe.

VaultMe migrates all files, both owned and shared, automatically — which is a much quicker and easier way to transfer your Drive content to a new account.

There are other options that you may consider, too. As you will see below, they all have major downsides, but they may still work for some people.

How to copy “Shared with me” files from one Google Drive to another

It is important to understand that, since “Shared with me” files are owned by somebody else, the owner of the files can control how others are using these documents. The owner may disable downloading, copying, and/or re-sharing.

All methods described below will only work for “Shared with me” files that do not have limited permissions set by the owner.

Option 1 (automatic). Automagically copy documents “Shared with me” together with the files that you own using VaultMe

To avoid the trouble of even thinking about which files are owned by you and which are shared with you, use VaultMe to migrate all your Google Drive content at once.

VaultMe makes the painful copying process easy and has some major advantages:

  • It preserves the organization of the files and folders and does not involve any manual work
  • VaultMe is quick and it works online. You can close the browser and even turn off the computer
  • VaultMe migrations are super easy to set up
  • The VaultMe app is secure and is trusted by users all over the world — and you should see the reviews!
If you have any questions about VaultMe, please contact us at support@vaultme.com. We’d be happy to help!

Option 2 (manual). Re-share “Shared with me” documents with your new account

This option will make the shared documents in the old Drive appear in the “Shared with me” section of your new Drive.

We do not recommend this method for people who want to save the content of their student accounts. Student accounts are often deleted in bulk by administrators. When the account of someone that shares a file with you is deleted, the file gets deleted, too. You will no longer be able to access it, even if you have re-shared it.

If you are ready to proceed, here’s how you can re-share the files:

  1. Go to the “Shared with me” section in your Drive.
  2. Select the files that you wish to access from your new account.
  3. Right-click on them and select “Share”.
    Step 3 of the re-sharing process. The “Share” option menu in Google Drive
    How to re-share a shared file in Google Drive
  4. Type in your new account’s email address and click “Done”.
  5. Go to the “Shared with me” folder in your new Drive to view the files.

    Please note: if the person that shared the files with you deletes them or removes your access, you will no longer be able to see those documents in the “Shared with me” folder in your new account.

Option 3 (manual). Download “Shared with me” files to your computer and then upload them to your new account

This option involves downloading “Shared with me” documents to the hard drive manually and then uploading them to the new Drive.

If you select multiple files, Google will put them all into a zip archive. If you wish to use the files from your new account just as you were using them from the old account, you will need to unzip the archive and re-organize the files before you upload them to the new account.

Here’s how you download and upload the files:

  1. Go to the “Shared with me” folder in your old Drive.
  2. Select the files that you wish to copy.
  3. Right-click on them and select “Download”.
    Step 3 of the manual download and upload of Drive files. The download menu in Google Drive
    How to download the files from the “Shared with me” folder in Google Drive
  4. Upload the files to your new Drive.

Please also note that the files in some native Google formats (such as Google Forms and other less popular formats) cannot be downloaded.

Option 4 (manual). Copy “Shared with me” documents to your Drive and then migrate them to a new account

You can consider this option if you are planning to use Google Takeout to migrate all your files to the new Google account.

Because Google Takeout does not export “Shared with me” files, you need to transfer these files to your old Drive first to make them available for a Google Takeout export.

Using this method, you will create copies of the shared documents in the “My Drive” folder of your old account. You will be the owner of these copies and they will use the storage space in your Google Drive. So before you begin, make sure you have enough free storage space.

To create copies:

  1. Go to “Shared with me” in your old Drive.
  2. Select the files that you wish to save.
  3. Right-click on them and select “Make a copy”.
    Step 3 of copying shared files to “My Drive”. The menu for creating a copy in Google Drive
    How to make a copy of a shared file in Google Drive
  4. Go to My Drive and view the files.

There are important things that you should consider before you start:

  • Folders cannot be copied. You will be able to create only copies of individual files.
  • All your files will go to the “My Drive” folder. You won’t be able to select folders where you wish these copies to go. This will involve additional organization after you finish copying your files.
  • All copied files will be renamed to “A copy [File name]” automatically.
  • Large files (such as videos) will copy slowly and the copying process may fail.

After you create copies of “Shared with me” documents in your Drive, you will need to migrate them to your new account.

This can be done manually using Google Takeout or automatically using VaultMe.

And this is why we recommend using VaultMe for Drive migrations. It saves the trouble of sorting out which files are owned by you and which are shared with you.

The app migrates both owned and shared files, so instead of creating copies and finding ways to migrate them, give VaultMe a try.

Conclusion

You can copy the files from the “Shared with me” folder to your new Drive account automatically or manually.

The automatic option is preferable in most cases because it involves no manual work and provides fast and precise results. Use VaultMe if you want the job to be done quickly and efficiently.

Manual methods are less reliable and more time-consuming. But they are worth considering if you are willing to do most of the work yourself and know how to fix issues that may arise.