How to share a folder in Microsoft Teams channel?

This is a question from Elena:

I work as a project manager for a building company, and i am tasked to maintain a shared procedures folder. The challenge is how to have others , not necessarily working for our company, accessing its contents. So far, I am unable to share a document folder with external users as well as our team members. The only solution we came with was to using a OneDrive folder. Any further ideas how to be able to have others access our Shared documents folder and still have it readily accessible in Microsoft Teams?

Thanks for your question. Below we’ll expand on three methods you could potentially use in order to facilitate sharing of your files with the team. The post was written using Windows 10, but for the most it is fully applicable for Windows 11 and macOS.

Sharing folders in Microsoft Teams

Use SharePoint Document libraries

As of today, there is no simple Teams capability that allows to share a folder in your channel folder structure. Once you upload a file or folder to Teams, your files are actually stored in a SharePoint library which allows you to easily share your folder.

  • Start by logging in to your Microsoft Teams desktop (on Windows or macOS) or web editions.
  • Find the relevant channel.
  • Hit Files and navigate to your channel folder structure until you see the folder you would like to share with your internal or external business partners.
  • Hit the Open in SharePoint button as shown below.
  • The associated SharePoint Document Library will open up.
  • Hit the Show Actions menu and then hit Share.
  • The Send Link dialog will open up.
  • Use the To filed to input the names and email addresses of the people you would like to share your folder with.
  • Once done hit on Send.

Share a folder using OneDrive

Another simple way to share files and folders is using OneDrive.

  • From your Teams Channel open the SharePoint Document library as shown above.
  • Hit the Show Actions menu and select Add shortcut on OneDrive.
  • From OneDrive, share the link as shown in the section above.

Teams folder access via DropBox, Google Drive or other cloud drive

In order to share with external partners who are not using OneDrive you can use the Add external cloud storage option.

  • From your Teams channel navigate to your folder.
  • Hit the Add cloud storage.
  • Pick your favorite cloud storage, in this case Dropbox.
  • Enter your login and password.
  • Upload your folder and provide the required parties in the 3rd party storage.

Allow guest access to a Teams channel

Last method that we’ll cover is sharing with external parties right on from your Teams channel. For this you’ll need to first, go ahed and add add the external users as guests into your relevant Teams and Private channels as needed.

Send folder via Teams chat

For completeness, we wanted also to mention the possibility to send a link to a specific folder via the Teams chat and Outlook.

  • In your Teams channel, open the Files tab.
  • Locate your folder, hit the Show Actions button and hit Copy Link.
  • Hit the Copy button and close the dialog,
  • Move to your Channel Chat tab.
  • Paste the link as needed in your channel chat conversation.
  • To share the link to the folder with specific people in a 1:1 chat, use the Chat application

Share folder in Outlook

To send our a Teams folder via Outlook, you can obtain the link as showed in the previous section. Next, go ahead and paste the link to your Teams folder into an Outlook email and send to your recipients. Note that both internal and external users will need read access to the Teams channel to access the content.

Additional Learning