I want to give someone a Google Sheets that I made so they can use it independently of my sheet. I don't want to ever be able to read/write/update their sheet. I'm aware there are various options for adjusting permissions on Google Sheets.

For example, if I email someone a text file and they edit it, I don't know what they've done to their copy and they don't know what I've done to mine.

How do I do this with a Google Sheets?

2 Answers 2


You need to give them a modified shareable link to a copy of your file.

First, make a copy of your sheet: File -> Make a copy...

Second, create a shareable link with can view permissions:

enter image description here

Note the end of the url:


Finally, send them the URL of your sheet with /copy appended on the end - it directly refers them to this page, by which then can then duplicate it and have their own copy:

enter image description here

Note the end of the url:

  • I think you may need to send a link that was generated with edit permissions and then modify the end matter with /copy. For example, I generated a shareable link with edit permissions: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1zI4ouvg4GLTK47t813gZk3B1tGvDXyaCtFoljv7giAY/edit?usp=sharing and then I modified that url like how you suggested: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1zI4ouvg4GLTK47t813gZk3B1tGvDXyaCtFoljv7giAY/copy but I don't think any url will work. Do you agree?
    – mbigras
    Mar 7, 2017 at 5:58
  • actually, now that I think about it's that's probably a bad idea because then they could just slightly modify the url back to edit and they would be able to edit it!
    – mbigras
    Mar 7, 2017 at 6:00
  • yeah unless you keep a static copy that only is for sharing/copying I suppose :-/ but I think your right about the part about needing it to have edit permissions - makes sense Mar 7, 2017 at 6:01
  • Hmmm, so it sounds like that's the only way so far: make a static copy, edit the permissions, modify the url? Seems like a lot just to share a file ;)
    – mbigras
    Mar 7, 2017 at 6:02
  • 1
    I'll take care of it, images are a pain
    – mbigras
    Mar 7, 2017 at 6:11


After further research the procedure has been abbreviated and can be achieved as follows without the need to create a shareable link as per the following instructions:

enter image description here

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