Most of us are not web developers and most of us may never really want to build a website. But, last week I wrote a post about using Google Hangouts and Google Drive. After that post, I received a follow up question or two after my weeks wrap up and saw that you can host a simple website using Google Drive. I went through that process, which I’ll share.
1. I opened up my google drive in my web browser and created a new folder.
2. I named that folder Website 1. You don’t have to name it this in order for it to work. I just wanted to keep it simple.
3. I opened up a text editing file and inserted a little code that I knew. If you are on Windows, you can use note pad. I used Text Wrangler on my iMac. I wrote a few simple html lines. I opened with a simple html tag, than a body tag. The <p> tags serve as a simple break, like a paragraph. Be sure to close every tag that you open. You don’t have to add links and pictures in but I did. Feel free to copy the code here if you are not familiar with html code. (Note: the <a href> code is the open tag for creating a link. The <img src> tag tells the browser where to look for the image). [Click the image for a larger version of the code]
4. I saved this file as index.html then created an images folder in the same directory.
5. I return to my google drive area in my browser and select the Website 1 folder, then click the Share button at the top.
6. Once my dialog opens, I make sure that I set my folder to be public on the web.
7. Open the Website 1 folder and then drag the images folder and index.html over to it. The shared settings will now be applied to these files.
8. Now, if I look up in my address bar, I will see that the URL says https://drive.google.com… with some additional letters after it. I copy the letters after the word folders.
9. I open up a new browser tab and type http://googledrive.com/host/. I paste the copied letters after host and hit Enter.
10. My website shows up.
So aside from collaborating on text documents, spreadsheets and other files types, Google Drive is a powerful tool that in many ways has replaced Dropbox for my personal and business uses.