If you’re wondering how to host a website on Google Drive for free, well, I just did (and it took me 2 minutes!) so I’ll tell you all about it.
Even though the new Google Drive has made it harder to host websites, there’s still a pretty easy workaround I came across. It comes in the form of a Google Script written by an expert in the field, Amit Agarwal. First I’ll show you this way — the easy way — then I’ll explain how you can do it without the script.
How to Host a Website on Google Drive using a Google Script
1. Put all your website files in a .zip file (.rar doesn’t work, I tried). I made a sample website in a .zip file by modifying Amit’s content, you can download it here if you don’t have any zipped webpages kicking around.
2. Open the Google Script page and upload your .zip file.
3. Hit upload file, and you should see this:
4. Enjoy your free web hosting!
The Hard(er) Way
If you’re learning to host a site on Google Drive out of curiosity, you probably aren’t satisfied with having all the work done for you with a script. Unfortunately for you, it’s not particularly techy or in-depth, it just has more steps.
1. Create a new folder in Google Drive
2. Upload the contents of your website’s .zip file and move them to the folder.
3. Right click the folder and choose ‘share’, then ‘advanced’ at the bottom of the popup.
4. Choose ‘Public on the web’ and save.
5. After hitting save, you’ll be given a public link but it will be a link to the folder your .html files are stored in on Drive, not an actual website.
6. So the next thing we need to do is to change the link. Cut out the string of letters and numbers between id= and &usp, and paste it at the end of https://googledrive.com/host/
7. Navigate to your new link, and you should see your web page!
For a video tutorial on how to host a website on Google Drive see below:
If you’re not a fan of your huge and ruthlessly forgettable URL, there’s always gweb.io, a service for people serious about hosting with Google Drive that allows you to use your own URL, unlimited sites and free SSL. Other options for using your own domain are impractical, hacky or unprofessional, such as frame forwarding or using a shortening service like GDrives. For now, it seems like gweb.io is the best option we’ve got.
To learn more about Google Drive, check out 25 Google Drive Tips You’ve Probably Never Heard Before. Google Drive is a great way to host simple sites, but if you’re looking to build a blog for your company, you should see this post.