Drive.

How to fix missing folders and files from Google Drive on Mac

Recently I noticed a very annoying problem with Google Drive on Mac that was a real pain, here's how I solved it.

The Google Drive app is a very handy tool that connects your Drive and Shared Drives on you Google Workspace as a virtual mounted drive on your Mac or PC.

It’s a great way to share files with a team or generally keep large, unused files off your computer and stored safely online.

I stumbled across a weird issue recently where the folders that I could see on my Mac were different to those when looking at Google Drive on my browser. Cue Scooby Doo confused face.

After a lot of looking through Google’s relatively useful support site and even checking Stack Overflow (where things got out of hand quite quickly), I found there’s a way to refresh the contents of a Folder very quickly.

  1. Navigate to the folder (or multi select a number of folders) that you’d like to refresh
  2. Right click on the folder and head most of the way down the menu that appears
  3. Click on Refresh Folder
  4. Kerpow. A few moments later, the folder contents are updated.

I’m assuming the Google Drive app uses some pretty heavy caching to reduce data transfers and this can sometimes ignore changes in folders, but the above hidden little command makes all the difference.

Who wrote these words?

This post - How to fix missing folders and files from Google Drive on Mac - was written by James Kindred, a freelance creative director and graphic designer based in Ipswich, Suffolk. He has 20 years of industry experience creating brands and creative strategies for clients and his own businesses.

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