You may have hundreds of files on your Google Drive, but fortunately Drive has a couple of ways to allow you to access your files quickly.

Firstly, if you’re like me, you end up using certain ones all the time and to help you get to those files or folders quickly, Google Drive has the option to “star” them, so that they appear in the “Star” filter.

Secondly, you have the option of “Quick access” links at the top of your Drive, which with a bit of AI, shows files Drive thinks you’ll need.


Starring you files

1) Right-click on the file or folder you want to star.

If you want to star multiple files or folders in the same folder, remember you can do that by selecting them either holding down Ctrl or Shift, selecting them and then right-clicking.

Starring files - z1

2) Click on “Add star”.

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3) A little star will appear next to you files or folders.

Starring files - z3

4) Go to the menu on the left-hand side of the screen and click “Starred”.

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Here, you’ll find your starred files and folders for quick access.

If you want to remove them from this filter. Just right-click on a file or folder and click “Remove star”.

Starring files - z6


Quick access

Another way to access your files quickly is to use “Quick access”. These are files Drive’s AI believes you will need.

According to Google:

“Quick Access intelligently predicts and surfaces files based on, among other things:

  • who specific files are frequently shared with
  • when relevant meetings occur
  • what files are used at specific times of the day”

So the theory is that the file you’ll want will be waiting for you there. You’ll find them at the top of your My Drive above the list of your files and folders. In the example below, you can see it’s selected 4 files. A couple I had opened today and the others which I had either edited or opened this week and probably around the time I’m writing this.

Click on the file to open it. You can also right click as you would with a normal file and it brings up the same menu.

If you want to turn it off or if you can’t see it and want to turn it on, from the main Drive screen, click the setting cog wheel and select “Settings”.

Scroll down a little and you’ll find the option to turn Quick access on or off.

I have to say that personally I don’t use it, as I use a lot of different files during the day and it rarely shows a file I particularly want and it takes up precious space on the screen. Plus I find either starring certain files or just using the search bar, is a quicker way to find what I want. It’s a nice idea and maybe it could be useful for some, but until the AI is that much more intelligent, then for now I have mine turned off.


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Baz Roberts (Google+Flipboard / Twitter)