How to Use iCloud Drive File Sharing in macOS


Mac users can use iCloud Drive file sharing to easily share files and folders from iCloud Drive with other people. This cloud sharing capability also exists on iPhone and iPad, and it works similar to how Dropbox and Google Drive function, allowing for easy collaboration and sharing of files and documents easily.

The ability to use iCloud Drive file sharing in macOS requires a modern version of system software, specifically anything beyond MacOS Catalina 10.15.4 or later including Big Sur, as earlier versions do not support the feature.

Using iCloud Drive to share files and folders does work pretty much as you might expect it to. And because it’s baked into macOS it’s pretty easy to use, too. But like everything in life, it’s only easy if you know how to do it. And as ever, that’s where we come in.

We’re going to show you exactly how to share a file or folder from iCloud Drive on the Mac, and as you’ll see it’s quite simple.

How to Share Files and Folders with iCloud Drive in MacOS

You can share any file or folder that is already located in iCloud Drive.

  1. Locate the item that you would like to share in iCloud Drive to get started.
  2. Right-click the file or folder that you want to share and select “Share” before clicking “Add People”.
  3. The next window provides a number of options for sharing the invitation. Select the one you would like to use.
  4. Click Share Options” to reveal settings for different permissions – select who you want to be able to access the file or folder as well as whether they can make changes or not. Click “Share” when you’re ready.
  5. Depending on the method you’re using to share the invitation the next screen will differ. If you’re using Messages – the most likely method – select the person you want to invite and then press “Send” like any other message.

Congratulations, you just shared access to one of your files or folders. Easy, right?

But what about editing permissions once an item has been shared? Good question.

How to Edit Permissions of Shared iCloud Drive Files & Folders in MacOS

  1. Right-click the file or folder that you already shared
  2. select “Share” before clicking “Show People”.
  3. Click the “Show Options” disclosure triangle. You can now make changes to access permissions, copy a link, or stop sharing completely. You can even send the link to someone if needed, too.

Depending on your use case iCloud Drive has the potential to replace paid-for services like Dropbox, Google Drive, and more.

The added benefit of iCloud Drive is that it’s built right into every Mac, iPad, and iPhone and you already have it installed. As we mentioned before, the ability to use iCloud file sharing on iPhone and iPad is also easy for the iOS and ipadOS users out there.

You can do some other neat things with iCloud Drive, too. Like browse it from your iPhone and iPad and even access it via a command line. The recovery of deleted items from iCloud Drive is also supported as well. Happy iCloud file sharing!

Let us know your thoughts and experiences with iCloud File sharing in MacOS in the comments below.

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