I'm new to Google Drive and I've also used the built in editors to create documents and spreadsheets.

For school, I've created a folder for one subject, where I'll have to work with 2 other guys from school on a document (we'll have to write about 30 pages). They were cool with uploading progress to Google Drive, but now I'm wondering: We won't be using Google Drive to write the documents, just to share progress and put relevant stuff together.

This would mean, that we would use Microsoft Office, creating docx documents. What does happen, if two of us (both using the Google Drive desktop client, so that it syncs automatically) were working on the same document at the same time? How does Drive handle this? Does the last saved document always "win" or can it somehow put the stuff together, like it does in the online editor?

  • You can avoid this by converting your document to a Google Docs document, doing all of your shared changes on that, then downloading the final product as a docx file.
    – ale
    Commented Oct 1, 2012 at 16:54
  • @AlEverett Problem is, the google document editor isn't that far (I can't create my own format-templates or putting a fixed image into the header is not possible). But I guess, this will be the only solution unless there's a way to edit .*x files.
    – Ahatius
    Commented Oct 3, 2012 at 3:55

1 Answer 1


Almost three years later, Google Docs now natively supports the editing of DOCX files stored in Google Drive, though changes made to a Word document are not automatically saved. (That said, saving changes is a matter of clicking a button.)

If two people are working on the document at the same time, Docs will notify the other person if the document has been saved while they are working, but if the second person saves their changes later, the version saved last will overwrite the previous one.

Since Google Docs lets you know who is currently viewing the document besides you, if you notice another person working on the document, it would be of mutual benefit to communicate with your colleague—perhaps using the built-in chat system—to make sure that neither of you overwrites the other's hard work.

  • 1
    Thanks for the update, better late than never I guess :)
    – Ahatius
    Commented Sep 21, 2015 at 4:09

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