Shared links: Give people view-only access to your files

This article discusses two ways to give other people view-only access to files in your Dropbox: shared files and shared links.

Share a file if you only want certain people to have access to your file.

  • Note: People you share a file with 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.

Create a shared link if you want anyone to be able to click a link to access your file—people don't need a Dropbox account to view your file.

Whether you share a link or a file, the people you share with will be able to:

  • View files
  • Comment on files
  • Download copies of files

However, people who receive a shared link or shared file won't be able to edit the original file in any way.

Share on the desktop or mobile apps

Select your operating system from the list below for more info:

Android

Share a file

  1. Navigate to the file or folder you want to share, then tap the downward arrow to the right of the file or folder name.
  2. Tap Share.
  3. Enter the name or email address 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.

Share a link

  1. Navigate to the file or folder you want to share, then tap the downward arrow to the right of the file or folder 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. You’ll see a menu of apps, such as email and text, that you can choose from to send your file. Select the app you'd like to use and Dropbox will paste the link into the app.

iPad

Share a file

  1. Find the file you'd like to share in the file list view.
  2. Tap the downward arrow beside the file name to reveal a set of actions.
  3. Tap Share.
  4. Enter the name or email address of the people who need access to your files.
  5. Under the These People option, choose Can view.
  6. Add a message about the files and tap Send.

Share a link

  1. Find the file you'd like to share in the file list view.
  2. Tap the downward arrow beside the file name to reveal a set of actions.
  3. Tap Share.
  4. Under Who Has Access 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.
  5. Select the way you'd like to share the link, such as email, text message, or social media post.
  6. Fill out information as needed to send or post the link.

iPhone

Share a file

  1. Find the file you'd like to share in the file list view.
  2. Tap the downward arrow beside the file name to reveal a set of actions.
  3. Tap Share.
  4. Enter the name or email address of the people who need access to your files.

  5. Enter the name or email address of people you want to share with
  6. Under the These People option, choose Can view.
  7. Add a message about the files and tap Send.

Share a link

  1. Find the file you'd like to share in the file list view.
  2. Tap the downward arrow beside the file name to reveal a set of actions.
  3. Tap Share.
  4. Under Who Has Access 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.
  5. Select the way you'd like to share the link, such as email, text message, or social media post.
  6. Fill out information as needed to send or post the link.

Linux

Share a link

  1. Install the Dropbox desktop app on your computer (if you haven't already).
  2. Right-click on the file to open its contextual menu and select Share Dropbox link. The link will be copied and you can immediately paste it anywhere.
Select Copy Dropbox link to share

Macintosh

Share a file

  1. If you haven't already, install the Dropbox desktop app on your computer.
  2. Press control on your keyboard and click the file at the same time (or right-click the file).
  3. Select Share…
  4. Choose Can view.
  5. Enter the name or email address of the people who need access to your files.
  6. Click Invite.

Share a link

  1. If you haven't already, install the Dropbox desktop app on your computer.
  2. Press control on your keyboard and click the file at the same time (or right-click the file).
  3. Select Copy Dropbox 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.

Vista/Win7/Win8/Win10

Share a file

  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 name or email address of the people who need access to your files.
  5. Click Invite.

Share a link

  1. If you haven't already, install the Dropbox desktop app on your computer.
  2. Right-click the file and hover over More…
  3. Choose Copy Dropbox 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.

Or:

  1. If you haven't already, install the Dropbox desktop app on your computer.
  2. Right-click the file.
  3. Choose Share...
  4. Click Create link.
  5. Click Copy link.

Windows Phone

Share a link

  1. Tap and hold any file or folder name to reveal a list of actions.
  2. Tap Share.
  3. Select whether you'd like to send a link or copy the link to your clipboard. Selecting Send a link gives you the option to use other apps, such as email, text messages, or social media.
  4. Fill out information as needed to send or post the link.

Windows Tablet

Share a link

  1. Tap on the folder or file you want to share to open it.
  2. Tap
  3. Select whether you'd like to send a link or copy the link to your clipboard. Sending a link will provide several options to share, such as email, Facebook, or other apps.
  4. Fill out information as needed to send or post the link.

Share on dropbox.com

Share a file

  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 name or email address 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.
    • Plus and Business users: You'll see options in the pop-up window to set a password and/or expiration for the link.

Share a link

  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 using the Dropbox badge

Haven't heard of the Dropbox badge? Learn more.

  1. Click the Dropbox badge.
  2. From the pop-out window, click Copy Dropbox Link.
  3. Select Copy Dropbox link to share
  4. The link will be copied, and you can immediately paste it into emails, instant messages, blog posts, or wherever you'd like people to access the file copy.
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