How to Hide Version History in Google Docs: A Step-by-Step Guide


Matthew Burleigh

Looking to keep your Google Docs edits under wraps? Hiding the version history of a document is simpler than you might think. Essentially, you’ll create a copy of your document, which won’t carry over the version history. This way, only you’ll know about the changes that have been made. By following a few straightforward steps, you can ensure that your document’s edit history remains just for your eyes.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Hide Version History in Google Docs

Before diving into the nitty-gritty, let’s get one thing straight: When you hide version history in Google Docs, what you’re really doing is creating a fresh copy of the document. This new copy won’t have the version history of the original. The steps below will guide you through the process of making that happen.

Step 1: Open Your Document

Open the Google Docs document you want to hide the version history for.

When you open your document, make sure you’re logged into the correct Google account. Sometimes, if you have multiple accounts, things can get a bit mixed up.

Step 2: Click on ‘File’

In the upper left corner of your screen, click on ‘File’.

This will open a dropdown menu with a bunch of different options related to your document.

Step 3: Select ‘Make a Copy’

In the dropdown menu, scroll down and select ‘Make a copy’.

A new window will pop up asking you to rename the document and choose where to save it.

Step 4: Rename Your Document

Rename your document if desired and select a folder to save the copy in.

It’s a good idea to give your new document a name that you’ll remember, so you don’t get it mixed up with the original.

Step 5: Share Your New Document (Optional)

Share the new document with the same people who had access to the original, if necessary.

Remember that when you make a copy, the sharing settings don’t carry over. You’ll have to manually share your new document with anyone who needs access.

After you’ve made a copy of your document, the original version history will no longer be visible to anyone you share the new document with. Only the versions created from the point the copy was made will be visible. This can be useful if you’ve made a lot of changes that you don’t want others to see, or if you’re passing your document on to someone else and want to give them a clean slate.

Tips: Enhancing Your Google Docs Experience

  • Always remember to title your document clearly, so you can differentiate between the original and the copy.
  • Regularly clean up your Google Drive to avoid confusion with multiple copies.
  • Use the ‘Suggesting’ mode for edits if you want to track changes without affecting the version history.
  • Remember that once the version history is hidden (by making a copy), you can’t retrieve it.
  • Take advantage of Google Doc’s ‘Revision History’ feature to review past edits before you decide to hide them.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I hide the version history from specific people?

No, the version history is either visible to everyone with access to the document or hidden from everyone. To hide it, you’ll need to make a copy of the document.

What happens to comments and suggestions in the original document?

Comments and suggestions won’t carry over to the new copy. You’ll need to add them manually if needed.

Is it possible to hide the version history without making a copy?

No, currently the only way to hide the version history in Google Docs is by making a new copy of the document.

Can viewers see the version history, or is it just editors?

Anyone with access to the document, whether they’re viewers or editors, can see the version history unless it’s been hidden by making a copy.

What if I want to restore the version history after making a copy?

Unfortunately, once you make a copy and the version history is hidden, you cannot restore it. It’s a good idea to make sure you won’t need the version history before you take this step.


  1. Open your document.
  2. Click ‘File’.
  3. Select ‘Make a copy’.
  4. Rename the document.
  5. Share the new document (optional).


Hiding version history in Google Docs can be an invaluable trick for maintaining the privacy of your document’s edit history, especially when collaborating with others. Whether you’re a teacher sharing documents with students, a professional working on a shared project, or simply someone who likes to keep their drafts to themselves, knowing how to hide version history can give you greater control over your work. Additionally, as Google Docs continues to evolve, who knows what new features will be introduced to enhance document privacy? Until then, making a copy to hide version history remains a reliable and straightforward method. Remember to use it wisely and always keep track of your document versions to avoid any mix-ups. Happy document managing!

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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