How to Share Files Stored in Your iCloud Drive

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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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You can share files you've synced to iCloud with friends and colleagues who have an Apple ID using the step-by-step guide below. Whether you're sharing from a Mac or an iPhone, you'll be able to give people one-way access to the file, or allow them to modify the document if you're collaborating on a piece of work.

The sharing options you choose automatically sync across your devices, so you could, for example, share a file on Mac and change access permissions on your iPhone or on iCloud.com at a later time. The following steps assume Mac users are running macOS High Sierra or later and that iPhone or iPad owners are on iOS 11 or later.

How to Share iCloud Files From Your Mac
  1. Open a Finder window and locate the file in iCloud that you want to share. It could be in iCloud Drive or another folder that you sync to iCloud, such as Desktop or Documents.
  2. Click the file to highlight it.
  3. Click the Share button and select Add People from the dropdown menu. Alternatively, right-click (or Ctrl-click) the file and select Share -> Add People.

    Choose how you'd like to send your invitation to access the file. In our example, we're sharing a link via email. You can also click the chevron next to Share Options to control who can access the file (Only people you invite / Anyone with the link) and their permissions (Can make changes / View only).
    Click Share.

    Depending on how you chose to share the invitation, the relevant app will open containing a link to access the file. In our example, an email compose window appears, ready to add recipients and click Send.
How to Share iCloud files on iPhone and iPad

  1. Launch the Files app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Locate the file in iCloud Drive that you want to share.

    Tap Select in the upper right of the screen.
  3. Tap the file to check it in the selection.
  4. Tap the Share icon in the lower left of the screen.

    Tap Add People in the second row of the Share Sheet.
  5. Tap the method you'd like to use to send your invitation. You can also optionally tap Share Options to control who can access the file (Only people you invite / Anyone with the link) and their permissions (Can make changes / View only).
  6. Depending on how you chose to share the invitation, the relevant app will open containing a link to access the file, ready for you to share.
How to Change Access Rights to a Shared iCloud File

Changing file sharing permissions via Mac or iOS is easy. Once you've shared an iCloud file, the Add People option you used in the above steps is replaced with a Show People option. Selecting this will display who has access to the file, including an option to Stop Sharing the file completely.


If you're on Mac, click the dotted icon next to a person's name to reveal options to change their permissions or Remove Access. If you're on iPhone or iPad, simply tap a person in the People list to access the same options.

Article Link: How to Share Files Stored in Your iCloud Drive
 
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RightMACatU

macrumors 65816
Jul 12, 2012
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Is this a per file only access? Could I do this on a folder and avoid multiplying this step for evvvvvvery file I want to share?
 

timmyh

Contributing Editor
Mar 18, 2016
137
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Liverpool, UK
Could I do this on a folder and avoid multiplying this step for evvvvvvery file I want to share?
Crazy as it sounds, no, you can't. The method described above currently only works for individual files.

If you still want to use iCloud, you could try sharing a compressed zip containing several files, or creating a sparseimage file using Disk Utility and put files in that for sharing over icloud. If that doesn't work for you, I'd recommend another service.
 
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mail4asim

macrumors member
Mar 7, 2007
44
17
Cincinnati, OH
I tried this when I bought a small business last year but the whole thing about sharing one file at a time wasn't good enough for me. I wanted Folders shared with multiple people, which OneDrive and Google Drive were able to do with a couple of clicks.
On top of this, Apple did not offer personalized email hosting, domain services etc like Google and Microsoft do. Needless to say, I ended up choosing Google. Apple still doesn't offer solutions for small businesses.
 

B60boy

macrumors member
Nov 25, 2014
86
219
Besides a Folder share option iCloud Drive needs a "selective sync" option that the user controls like Dropbox, Google Drive and OneDrive. I can't believe that Apple does not let the user control what is sync'd to iCloud.
 

macduke

macrumors G4
Jun 27, 2007
10,917
14,604
Central U.S.
I use iCloud storage pretty much for photos/videos and backups only. I'm looking forward to the day when it's more of a Dropbox competitor so that I can drop the box. Nothing wrong with Dropbox, I'd just rather not pay for two services and figure iCloud storage is less likely to be hacked.
 
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BasicGreatGuy

macrumors G5
Sep 21, 2012
12,796
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In the middle of several books.
I don't mind the limitation when it comes to iCloud. This is a feature I rarely use because I don't want to be opening any unnecessary doors, so to speak. I want my iCloud to remain as secure is possible. I can always fall back to Dropbox for sharing with multiple people, if need be.
 

ignatius345

macrumors 68030
Aug 20, 2015
2,679
3,594
I still always go back to Dropbox and just right click whatever to simply copy a public link.
Same. I've got the vast bulk of my own stuff in the honkin' 2TB iCloud account I paid up for -- but still run Dropbox and use it for folder-level collaboration which it's great for. Dropbox is also cross-platform which makes it a no-brainer for a lot of business stuff.
 
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massnative

macrumors newbie
Sep 3, 2018
1
2
South Hadley, MA
I'm a huge Mac geek and own my own two small businesses, both of which use Macs. BUT, because Apple still is eons behind building an up-to-date small business support (which I personally think we will never truly see), things like iCloud Drive is only in place for me to back up my Mac's desktops and some files. As far as file-sharing, my teams us Sync (sync.com) which is very much like Dropbox, but without the high price tag, plus zero-knowledge and end-to-end encryption. As a Mac guy, I have to highly recommend Sync over Google and Dropbox.
 

Sackofnickels

Suspended
Jul 13, 2018
285
492
What I don't like is the part where they ay "who have an Apple ID". Why can't we share files with anyone we want? Is it really about being secure?
 
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