How to Force a Copy of a Google Doc: Step-by-Step Guide


Matthew Burleigh

Got a Google Doc you want to make a copy of, but not sure how to do it? No worries! It’s a simple process that involves duplicating the document so you can edit it without changing the original. You can do this in just a few clicks, and then you’ll have your own version of the document to use as you please. Let’s get into the nitty-gritty, shall we?

Step by Step Tutorial on How to Force a Copy of a Google Doc

Before we dive into the steps, it’s important to know that forcing a copy of a Google Doc creates a new document that you can edit, share, and manage independently of the original. It’s an excellent way to use templates or share documents without altering the master copy. Now, let’s get to it!

Step 1: Open the Google Doc

Open the Google Doc you want to copy.

When you’ve found the document you want to make a copy of, simply open it up. You’ll need to have access to the internet and be logged into your Google account to do this.

Step 2: Modify the URL

In the address bar, change the last part of the URL from "/edit" to "/copy".

This step is crucial! The URL of the document is what you see in your web browser’s address bar. By changing "/edit" to "/copy", you’re telling Google that you want to create a new, separate document.

Step 3: Press Enter

Press ‘Enter’ on your keyboard to load the new URL.

After you’ve modified the URL, you’ll need to load the new page by hitting ‘Enter.’ This will bring up a prompt to make a copy of the document.

Step 4: Make the Copy

Click on the ‘Make a copy’ button.

A new window will pop up asking if you want to make a copy. There will be a blue button that says ‘Make a copy.’ Go ahead and click it. You’re almost there!

Step 5: Rename the Document

Give the new document a name and click ‘OK’.

The final step is to give your new document a name that’s different from the original. You can also choose where to save it in your Google Drive. Once you’ve named it, hit ‘OK,’ and voila! You have a brand new Google Doc.

After you’ve completed these steps, you’ll have a new Google Doc that is yours to edit, share, and manage. This document will be separate from the original, so any changes you make won’t affect the original document.

Tips for Forcing a Copy of a Google Doc

  • Always make sure you have permission to make a copy of a document.
  • Rename the copied document immediately to avoid confusion with the original.
  • Check the sharing settings of the new document to ensure it’s shared with the right people.
  • Use this method to share templates with others without giving them access to edit the original.
  • Remember that any changes you make to the copy won’t be reflected in the original document.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the purpose of forcing a copy of a Google Doc?

Forcing a copy of a Google Doc allows you to create a new document from an existing one without altering the original. This is particularly useful when using templates or sharing documents safely.

Can I force a copy of a document that I don’t own?

You can only force a copy of a document if you have viewing permissions. If the document is restricted, you won’t be able to make a copy.

Can I force a copy of a Google Doc on a mobile device?

Yes, you can force a copy on a mobile device by using a web browser and following the same steps as you would on a desktop.

Will the formatting of the original document be preserved in the copy?

Yes, the formatting of the original document should be preserved in the new copy.

Can I force a copy of a document with comments or suggestions?

Yes, but comments and suggestions won’t be copied over. Only the content of the document will be duplicated.


  1. Open the Google Doc.
  2. Modify the URL.
  3. Press Enter.
  4. Make the Copy.
  5. Rename the Document.


Forcing a copy of a Google Doc is a straightforward process that’s incredibly useful when you want to work on a document without affecting the original. Whether you’re using a template or sharing a document with others, knowing how to make a copy ensures that the master document remains unchanged. Plus, it’s a great way to collaborate on projects without overwriting someone else’s work. Remember, the power of Google Docs lies in its versatility and ease of use—so go ahead, make that copy, and start working smarter, not harder. If you ever find yourself stuck or wondering how to force a copy of a Google doc, just come back to these steps, and you’ll be good to go!

Matthew Burleigh

Matthew Burleigh has been writing tech content online for more than ten years. He enjoys writing about Google Docs in addition to many other applications and devices and has cumulatively covered Google’s word-processing application in hundreds of different articles.

He has been published on dozens of popular websites, and his works have accumulated millions of pageviews.
While focused primarily on tutorials and guides for popular electronics like the iPhone and iPad, as well as common applications like Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, and Excel, he covers topics across the entire technology spectrum.

You can read his bio here.

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