Google Apps - Ways to View Attached Email Documents

Ways to View Attached Documents

There are three different ways to view attached documents in your Google Mail.  Each serves a different purpose, so I thought I'd address it here.

When you have an emails with attachment, it should appear at the bottom of your email as a squarish graphic.  You probably have noted that it has both an icon to indicate the type of file it is and the file name on the bottom of it:

(In my example I have a Word document and a PDF.)

If you mouse over the graphic, you will note that it changes and displays the full name on the graphic, the icon indicating the file type moves to the upper left, and two additional icons appear:

Ok, now you know enough to access the document in all three ways, so here are the three ways to view it and pros/cons to each:
  • Preview while in Mail: click anywhere on the graphic OTHER than the two icons at the bottom.  This will display the document over your mail (which will be "blacked out" underneath)
    • Pros: you can zoom in/out and print from icons that appear in the lower right; you can scroll through the entire document; you have access to the other two icons if you change your  mind in how you want to view/access it.
    • Cons: it is still only attached to your email, it is NOT on your computer or in your drive
  • Download: click on the download icon (the one with the arrow pointing down).  This will download the document to you computer/device in the designated download area.
    • Pros: you have it stored locally
    • Cons: you need to have software that is able to view/open the document
  • Add to Drive: click on the drive icon (the one with the funky triangle).  This will add the document to your Drive
    • Pros: you can use the pop-up window to add it to any of your My Drive folders (which will also share it with others if the folder has sharing rights); it will be stored in your My Drive
    • Cons: it takes the most time to do this

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