Creating Shared Links

Shared links enable you to quickly copy and share hyperlinks to content stored in Box with your coworkers and friends – both inside and outside the company. Sending someone a shared link to a file or folder is a way to work together with that person around shared content. Customizable permission levels, expiration dates and optional password-protection make Box shared links a secure, simple way to share important content.


Sharing a link

Simplified sharing enables you to quickly and easily share access to files and folders. Using the Share window, you can send to a collaborator a link to files and folders.


To open the Share window:

  1. In the Box window, hover on the file or folder.
  2. Click Share.  You can also either click the right mouse button or the ellipsis (...) to access Share.







To share a link to a file or folder:

  1. In the Share window, if the Share Link slider button is gray, click it. Box displays the link to the file or folder.
  2. Click Link Settings.  Box displays a list of link settings
  3. Edit your link settings and click Save
  4. Click People in your company, and select the access permission you wish to assign to the collaborator.
  5. Click Can view and download, and select the activity you wish to assign to the collaborator.
  6. To get a copy of the link to paste into a separate email, in the Share window click Copy.
  7. To send the link through Box, in the Share window click the envelope icon.  Box displays the Email Link window. 
  8. In the Email Shared Link field, type the name or email address of the collaborator. 
  9. In the Message field, type a message of up to 750 characters for the collaborator.
  10. Click Send.
  11. To remove or cancel a shared link, click the Share Link slider button again.




Shared link access

When creating a shared link, you will see these options:

  • People with the link: Anyone with the link can access the item and no Box account is required.  For extra security, you can also set a password or expiration for the link, as well as restrict download and/or preview access for link viewers.   
    • Password-protected shared links are available to all paid Box User accounts. 
  • People in your company: Only people who: (1) are managed on a Box account (Starter and above); (2) have an email address that matches a domain registered with Box for the account that created the link, can access the link. For example, if is a registered domain on your account, all managed account members with an email address ending in will be able to access this type of link. People who do not match a domain listed on your account, even if they are managed members on your account, will not be able to access the link. 
    • When accessing the link, collaborators must log in to Box to verify their identities. People in your company is disabled if you do not have a validated business domain registered with Box. 
    • Collaborators in the folder can also access content if People in your company is selected. 
  • Invited people only: Only people invited to the folder or file can access the content. Collaborators already have access to their content, but can easily direct one another to a specific file or folder using the shared link.

You can set the link options on individual files and/or folders by the owner, across all owned content, or by the admin for the entire company.  Also, be certain that the setting you choose does allow file access to the person with whom you are sharing it.  Otherwise, your intended recipient receives an error when he or she clicks on the link.  



Box makes it easy to collaborate on and share files and documents with anyone, inside or outside your organization. However, when you share, move, or copy content, the permission to access those items might change, often to a less restrictive setting. More on how Box helps you keep your content secure.

Detailed permissions

Permission Provided by Shared Link
Preview Yes
Download Configurable
Upload No
View / Add Comments Yes (via API)
View Item Collaborators No
View Item Owner Yes
View Item Creator Yes
View Item Modifier Yes
View / Edit Metadata Yes (via API)
View / Create Tasks No

("item" means the folder or file to which the shared link points.) 



  • People who have access to a shared link (either by your sending them a link, or their encountering it somewhere like a web page or forwarded email) are allowed to see and work with you on the content to which the shared link points. Depending on the link settings, these permissions may include downloading or editing the content.
  • Comments and metadata on files pointed to by a shared link can be viewed and created programatically via the API, even if they are not obviously visible in the preview experience.  



So can I create a shared link that allowed people with the link to upload and download? 

Hi @leph,


Shared links can allow people (with the link and without a box account) to download your file or folder if you allow them.

For the ability to upload to Box, you will need to use a separate setting/feature called File Requests here. This similarly allows uploads for people without a box account through a specific upload link. This feature however is available only to Enterprise users. 

Thanks Howard, That works for me. 

If I "send an invitation",  collaborators are asked to create a free trial account. 

If I send intended collaborator the link permission, they are not asked to sign up for free trail?

If I have already sent the share link to a group of people and later on I do not want a person in that group to have access the material in the shared folder.  What can I do? Is it possible to block an email from accessing the shared folder? what do you suggest?

Hi @EdithSusana!


Thank you for your question and for posting in the community!


If you haven't specified access to only be available to certain emails or people in your organization, there unfortunately isn't a way to ensure that a specific person is blocked from accessing your file from a shared link. However, there are a couple of options you can take vis-à-vis this KB article (and if another community member has more to share, please feel free to add on!):


  1. Remove the shared link or change the shared link setting to "Invited people only." Then, re-invite the people you want to give access to as collaborators. This will give you the option to manage the permissions of every single user you invite under the "Manage collaborators" page, so that in the future, if you want to block someone from accessing the folder, you can directly change permissions from that page.
  2. Go into the shared link settings and enable link expiration or disable the shared link. Then, re-enable and resend a new shared link to the people you want to give access to.

Hope this helps!


Box Community Management Intern

@ Howard 

Howard above mentions the upload link / widget is only available in the Enterprise version . Could somebody confirm this ?

Hi @Eireannach


Thanks for following up! The File Request feature is actually available to all paid Box accounts. 

So if I share a link does this add to my External Users?


Currently we are sharing the folder but it keeps adding to our External users, which we don't want. Just want to give clients access to view, comment and download content if needed.


Can someone point me in the right direction to an article or webinar regarding sharing and collaborators please

Hi @Tanbeen!


Thank you for your question!


When you turn the shared link setting of your folder on to "people with the link", anyone who has the link will be able to access that folder. In order to avoid this, you should remove the shared link or change the shared link setting to "invited people only." Then, re-invite your clients using their email addresses. This will ensure that only the clients that you want to give access to can access the folder.


I found this shared links video tutorial on our Box Education site that might help to clarify this information! There are also a few KB's that you can check out on our Shared Links and Collaborators page, which might have some pertinent information for you!


Hope that helped! Let us know if you have any more questions!


Box Community Management Intern

Hi @elii ,


I've had numerous instances where I'm sending a password protected Excel document to a 3rd party via Box and there is much difficulty in accessing the document. Ideally, the 3rd party should not have to create a Box account but can easily access to document via downloading or opening the Excel document. Is there a resource/instructions that you can share for me to to send to external collaborators? Preferably with visuals so they understand how to easily access the documents! 

The issue that I've been forwarded:

It doesn’t seem to be letting me enter as I don’t have an 'X company' email address.

But then when I choose to enter as non 'X company' with your password, it’s asking me to sign up for an account…

Hi @minhnguyen,


Thanks for the comment!


The first question I need to ask is: are you trying to grant access to a file by inviting others to collaborate, or are you trying to send them a shared link to view or download the file, as outlined in the KB article above?


We have an article on what to do if you are having trouble accessing a file or folder that you have been invited to collaborate on. But since this article is about Creating Shared Links I'm going to assume you're asking about those.


Shared links can be used to allow different kinds of access to download your file or folder. The important step is to ensure that the shared link settings are set appropriately for the type of access you want to allow: As noted above, the Shared Link settings that allow only authenticated Box accounts to access the link would be People in your company or Invited people only. To allow someone to access the file without logging in, you must use People with the link.


If the receiver of the link is being asked to log in with their Box account, then it is likely that the Shared Link settings for People in your company or Invited people only were used. If the Shared Link settings are People with the link and the receiver is still asked to log into Box, I recommend contacting Box Support to investigate.


Thanks again for posting to the Box Community!


  1. In the Box window, hover on the file or folder.
  2. Click Share. You can also either click the right mouse button or the ellipsis (...) to access Share.
  3. In the Share window, click Link Settings. Box displays the Shared Link Settings window.
  4. Edit the settings to which you have access
  5. Click Save.

I accidentally deleted the wrong file which had the shared link configured. I'm not able to restore that shared link, which was customized URL