The current Google Drive plug-in for Microsoft Office will stop working near the end of June. There’s an improved update already available for some customers and an alternative for the rest.
If you’re using the Google Drive plug-in, you’ll start seeing a warning about the plugins death on 26 June 2019.
There are two possible replacements for the Google Drive plug-in, depending on whether you have a paid G Suite / Google Apps account through work or school. Or a free Google account with standard access to Google Drive, Gmail etc.
Drive File Stream
Google Drive File Stream streams all cloud files and folders to your computer.
It’s only available for paid account, usually via work or school.
The Office integration changes to the usual method of opening or saving files through the File menu panes.
Outlook is included in Drive File Stream. There’s an ‘Insert files using Drive’ button on the ribbon
This adds similar features to those Microsoft added for OneDrive within Office 365.
- Save attachments from Outlook to Google Drive
- Attach Google Drive files to Outlook messages
Google Backup and Sync
Backup and Sync is for all Google Drive users – Windows and Mac. It’s a straightforward way to synchronize Google Drive cloud folders with your computer.
There’s no Office integration but it’s still possible to open and save Office documents saved in Google Drive. Simply open or save to the local folder copy of your Google Drive (as maintained by Backup and Sync). The utility will keep the documents synced up with Google Drive.
Compare Drive File Stream with Backup and Sync.
Google has a table comparing the two utilities. However for most people there’s no real choice.
If you have a paid G Suite account, use Drive File Stream with the better Office integration and Outlook features.
Everyone else gets Backup and Sync.