Google Docs – Revision History (all is not lost!)

One of my favourite things about the Google Apps suite is that it remembers every change that you have ever done to a file. That’s one of the beauties of not having to manually save the file. You can go back to earlier revisions of a file, not just what you’ve made but that anyone has made, plus you can see who made a particular revision.

To do this in Google Docs, first go to the revision link at the top of the screen, next to the menus. Here it will tell you when the last revision was made and who made it, if it wasn’t you.

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Clicking on the link, opens up the revision history window. On the right are the list of dates and times, when significant revisions were made.

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Different people will be in different colours.

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To look at a previous revision, click on an earlier date and you will see the parts that were changed highlighted in green. If you want to restore that revision, just click on “Restore this revision”.

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If there are more than one revisions at that point, you can click up and down the revision by clicking on the arrows in the top right-hand corner, next to where it says, for example, “Edit 1 of 2”.

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You also have the option of printing the previous revision of the document, without restoring it. Just click on the Print icon.

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You can look at more detailed revisions, by clicking on “Show more detailed revisions” in the bottom right of the page.

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Here you can see every single revision.

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Note, that if you make a copy of a document, you will lose the revision history in that new document.


eBooks now available on Drive, Forms, Sheets, Docs, and Slides:

  • Join the Google Slides Tips Google Space (for now: personal accounts only)

Baz Roberts (Flipboard / Twitter / Google+)


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