Improved admin controls over offline access to Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides files on the web
What’s new: Protecting proprietary and sensitive data is a top priority for many G Suite admins, just as is enabling their employees to work anywhere, anytime—with or without an internet connection. With this launch, we made it easier for admins to balance those interests by introducing settings in the Admin console for managing users’ access to Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides files offline.
Going forward, admins will have the following options to control offline access on desktop computers (in the Admin console at Apps > G Suite > Drive and Docs > Data Access ):
1.Control offline access using device policies – If an admin selects this option, she will need to take additional steps to control offline access for her users. IMPORTANT:
- If an admin does not want to enable offline access for ANY of her users, she should select this option and not take the extra steps to implement device policies on managed computers.
- If offline access was previously enabled in an organization and an admin selects this option, her users will lose offline access until she takes the extra steps to implement device policies on managed computers.
2.Allow users to enable offline access (recommended) – If an admin selects this option, his end users will be able to manually enable offline access from their Docs or Drive settings. Before doing so, the user will be asked if the computer is a trusted one and warned not to turn on the setting for any public or shared device.
If offline access is enabled for all or specific computers, recent Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides files on those computers will be automatically synced to the device and made available offline. This should improve the user experience on Docs, Sheets, and Slides, allowing employees to continue working, uninterrupted, even when their internet connection is poor or failing. Please note that these settings will not apply to non-Docs, non-Sheets, and non-Slides files in Drive.
If you previously allowed users to enable offline Docs, the second setting above (Allow users to enable offline access (recommended)) will be ON when these new settings launch, meaning your users will continue to have offline access.
If you previously didn’t allow users to enable offline Docs, the first setting above (Control offline access using device policies) will be ON when these new settings launch, meaning your users will not have offline access until you take the additional steps required to implement it.
Please note that these settings only apply to Docs, Sheets, and Slides in a Chrome browser on a desktop computer; they have no impact on automatic syncing to Android and iOS devices or on files synced using Google Drive for Mac/PC.