When two or more users view the same Google Spreadsheet and one of them filters the data by a column, that filter is immediately applied to all other users as well.

Is there a way to avoid this and allow each user to have their own filter criteria?

  • 4
    The solution is here :) productforums.google.com/forum/#!category-topic/docs/how-do-i/…
    – user20151
    May 16, 2012 at 22:02
  • @ricko Thanks for sharing this! I needed this for a tasklist assigned to several people, so the list view would have been just fine. I'll keep this in mind for whenever I need it. May 17, 2012 at 7:39
  • 1
    @wolf, please consider updating the accepted answer to the one using filter views as this is now the preferred way of applying a filter to a single client at a time.
    – KyleMit
    Mar 9, 2015 at 20:13

5 Answers 5


Now Google Drive has a feature called “filter views”. It makes some filters available only to you while you don't change any data.

Use filter views in the new Google Sheets

In Google Sheets, filtering your data makes it easier for you to view and analyse data by letting you hide data that you want to temporarily take out of view. The new Google Sheets introduces filter views as well, which allow you to create, name, and save filters that you can use without disrupting how others are viewing your spreadsheet.

Creating a filter view

When you create a filter view, it’s like saving a filter that you can use over and over again.

  1. Open the spreadsheet where you would like to create a filter view.
  2. Click the Data menu, hover over “Filter views…” and select Create a new filter view. You can also click the down arrow to the right of the filter icon and select Create a new filter view.
  3. Using the down arrows in the column headers, sort and filter the data to fit your desired view. Your filter view will be saved as you make changes.
  4. To close your new filter view, either click the X in the top-right corner of the spreadsheet or click the down arrow to the right of the filter icon and select None.

filter view

(Note: If you had existing shared filter on columns first remove that.)


  • Agreed. Anybody have the rank to overwrite which answer is accepted? Is that a thing? Mar 5, 2015 at 17:31
  • This still doesn't solve the root issue (due to Google support). Often users want to change various filter settings on the data; not just have a few saved filter modes which are still globally shared.
    – whitey04
    Dec 9, 2015 at 20:27
  • @whitey04, just create a filter view with your own name, meaning "this view is mine, don't touch it" :) Nov 29, 2017 at 16:15

The "List View" in the menu allows the user to filter without changing the view for the other users. However, they have to edit and submit the values for each row which is a little more cumbersome.

  • user20151 already gave this solution (but not as an answer...)
    – Jacob Jan
    May 21, 2013 at 20:41


The following is an answer from 2011. Obviously the right answer changed from that time as there is a better answer in 2014. Please note the 3 year difference before voting on the answer.

Keeping for archival reasons only, original answer:

I have checked the related Google Groups and Support threads. Obviously, it's not supported (and looks like no soon plan to be, although not 100% sure about this one).

The way I do now is export to Excel and apply the filter there, then find a likely unique value (or repeats few times) in the sheet to correlate the row in the Google Spreadsheet (by finding it in the Google sheet) and apply the required modifications. Not optimal, still hoping for per-user fllter support.


One easy way of achieving this is by Data->Protected Sheets and Ranges...->+Add a sheet or range. Select 1st row or the rows on which you generally apply filter and restrict it for everyone and save it. Now only the admin/owners can use the filter function which they should avoid using, anyone else trying to apply a filter will be forced to use Filter Views instead which will only be local to each person and not disrupt the sheet for the other users.

Hope this solves the issue.


Same issue still exists. We are getting around it by creating separate sheets for each user that reference the main sheet, but with 'if then' logic applied to only show the info pertinent to that user. Other user's rows are programmed to appear as -----. That user's sheet is now a filtered duplicate of the main sheet that can then be filtered more as needed without messing up anyone else's view. We are now going to create another sheet that references the users' sheets, without pulling the ----- cells. The reason being that the users can now edit their sheets, and all changes will appear in the final sheet. It makes the main sheet a 'rough draft', and the final sheet the edited version. That's the plan anyway. . .

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