How To Remove Google Docs Version History

When you make significant changes to an existing document, Google Docs auto-generates multiple versions. 

You can restore to the previous versions at any time from the menu. However, while sharing the document with anyone, you may only want to share the final version with others. 

There are a few tricks to prevent others from viewing the version history and your modifications. 

Delete Google Docs Version History By Duplicating

Google Docs allows you to create a new copy of an existing document. You can use this feature from Google Docs and Drive.

The new copy only copies the final iteration of your document and leaves everything to the original document.

The new document won’t have the version history, but you can share the new document with anyone you want. 

Here’s how to make a copy of a Google Doc:

Open a web browser on your computer and go to the Google Docs website. Select your Google Account that owns your original document.

Google Docs Dashboard

Click on the document you want to duplicate; it will open the document in the current tab.

Click on Make a copy

Click File from the top menu bar and select Make a copy from the menu. 

Provide the file name of the copied document; you can use the same name as your original file.

Make copy of a Google Doc

Select the destination folder for your new document. You can also copy the comments & suggestions or share the new document with the same people as your original document. 

Click on the Make a copy button. It will open the new document in a new tab. 

You can also use Google Drive to duplicate a Google Doc. 

Google Drive

Open a new tab on your browser and go to the Google Drive website. Search by your document name to find it. 

Copy Google Doc from Google Drive

Click the vertical three-dots icon beside the document title and select Make a copy from the menu. 

Open the copied Google Docs

Wait for a while, and Google Drive will create a copy of the file. Double-click on the new file to open it in a new tab. 

Click File from the menu

You can check that there’s no version history in the new file. Open the file in a new tab and click File from the menu bar.

Click on See version history

Select Version history from the menu and click on See version history

Click on See version history

There’s only one document version, which you copied from the original document. 

Hide Version History By Sharing With Viewer Permission

Version history is visible to the owner and editors of the document. You can share the document with view-only permission, and it hides the version history. 

Click on Share

Open the document from which you want to hide version history and click the Share button from the top right corner.

Enter the email of the receiver

Add the email of the person you want to share the document with. 

Select Viewer from the menu

The default permission is Editor. Click on the drop-down menu and choose Viewer from the menu. 

Google Docs automatically selects Notify people by default. You can also add a personalized message for the recipient(s).

Click on Send

Alternatively, you can create a view-only link. Anyone with that link can view your document. 

Click on Share

Open the document in a new tab and click on the Share button. A pop-up appears on your screen. 

Select Anyone with the link

Click on Restricted under the General Access and select Anyone with the link.

Click on Copy Link

The default permission is Viewer, so you won’t have to modify anything. Click the Copy link and share the link with anyone. 

Publish it on Web to Delete Version History

You can use Google Docs as your blog. It allows users to publish their documents on the web. 

Every document has a unique link, and it auto-updates any changes you make to the original document.

The web version of the document is also read-only, and people can’t view the version history. 

Click File from the menu

Open the document you want to publish and click File from the top menu bar. 

Click on Publish to web

Select Share from the menu and click on Publish to web

Publish Google Docs to Web

Click the Publish button and select OK from the prompt. 

Copy the link of the published post

Copy the post link and share it with the person you want. 

Version history is a useful feature; you can’t turn off version history for a specific document. 

It’s an automated process; you can only save specific versions with a fixed name. However, by applying one of these methods, you can share your document with anyone without any prior version history. 

Staff Writer

Avishek Das is currently studying for his bachelor's degree, and spends hours doing assignments and making presentations. He loves word processors and presentation makers. 

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