How to give view-only access to your files with shared links

There are several ways to allow people to view your files on Dropbox, but restrict their ability to edit them. View-only access is best for when you need to share a file with a large audience, or if you want to gather feedback on a file.

To give someone view-only access, you can:

1. Create a shared link

With a shared link, anyone with the link can access your file. If you share a link to a file, the people who receive that link don’t need a Dropbox account to view the file.

If you're a Dropbox Professional or Business customer, you can set permissions on your shared links to limit who can view them.

2. Add someone to a file or folder

Add someone to a file if you only want certain people to have access to your file. People you add to a file must have a Dropbox account.

Sections in this article:

How to share a link to a file or folder

You can share a link to a file or folder from dropbox.com, your computer, your phone, or your tablet. People who receive a shared link or shared file won't be able to edit the original file in any way.

If you’re a Dropbox Professional or Business customer, you can set permissions on shared links.

Share a link from dropbox.com

  1. Sign in to dropbox.com.
  2. Hover your cursor over the file or folder you'd like to share and click Share when it appears.
  3. If a link hasn't been created, click Create a link.
    • If a link was already created, click Copy link.
  4. The link will be copied to your clipboard. You can then paste it to an email, message, or wherever people can access it.

Share a link from your computer

  1. If you haven't already, install the Dropbox desktop app on your computer.
  2. Right-click or control-click the file.
    • On Windows: Choose Share... then Create link.
    • On Mac and Linux: click Copy Dropbox Link.
  3. The link will be copied to your clipboard. You can then paste it into an email, text message, or social media post.

Share a link from your phone or tablet

  1. Navigate to the file or folder you want to share.
    • On Android: Tap the downward arrow next to the file name.
    • On iOS: Tap “” (ellipsis) next to the file name.
  2. Tap Share.
  3. Tap Create a link.
    • If a link was already shared to this file or folder, tap Share next to Anyone with the link can view.
  4. Select the way you'd like to share the link, such as email, text message, or social media post.
  5. Fill out information as needed to send or post the link.

How to add someone to a file

You can add someone to a file to give them view-only access to that file in their Dropbox account. You can add someone to a file from dropbox.com, your computer, your phone, or your tablet.

Note: People you add to a file must have a Dropbox account. If you share a file to an email address not associated with a Dropbox account, then the person can create an account or use an existing account that's under a different email.

Add someone to a file on dropbox.com

  1. Sign in to dropbox.com.
  2. Hover your cursor over the file or folder you'd like to share and click Share when it appears.
  3. Enter the names or email addresses of the people who need access to your files.
    • If sharing a folder, choose Can view from the dropdown list.
  4. Add a message about the files and click Share.
    • Professional and Business users, as well as some Plus users, will see options in the pop-up window to set a password and/or expiration for the link.

Add someone to a file from your computer

  1. If you haven't already, install the Dropbox desktop app on your computer.
  2. Right-click the file or folder and select Share…
  3. Choose Can view.
  4. Enter the names or email addresses of the people who need access to your files.
  5. Click Invite.

Add someone to a file from your phone or tablet

  1. Navigate to the file or folder you want to share.
    • On Android: Tap the downward arrow next to the file name.
    • On iOS: Tap “” (ellipsis) next to the file name.
  2. Tap Share.
  3. Enter the names or email addresses of the people who need access to your files.
  4. Under These people, choose Can view.
  5. Add a message about the files and tap Send.

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