Embed PDFs for Public Sharing

  • 19 August 2021
  • 7 replies

Userlevel 3

When I get to “embed” I see this:

Only the owner and explicitly shared collaborators have access

Can the embedded PDF only be seen by people with access to the file in Drive? 


I’d like to make a Collection with Public Sharing that contains PDFs our users might need. They do not need to edit or add any content, only view. They do not have access to any internal systems, including Guru and Drive. 


I made a card that is in a Collection with Public Access yet when I access it from a different browser, I’m asked to login to Guru: (it’s my wifi bill, nothing with PII 😄


Best answer by Devon O'Dwyer 24 August 2021, 18:11

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7 replies

Userlevel 3

I wanted to edit the title but I can’t. And I tried to delete it so I could repost but that wasn’t an option either. 

The title should be “Embed PDFs for public sharing” 😄

Userlevel 3

@Siobhan Hyser Hi Siobhan! I went ahead and updated the title for you. :smile: If you click on the ellipsis in the bottom right hand corner of the post, do you see the option to edit it? 

Embedding PDFs: 

If the PDF lives in Google Drive, people who do not have access to it will not be able to view it, even if the Guru Card is Public. You will need to make the PDF accessible to anyone with the link in order for it to be publicly accessible. When you’re viewing the PDF, you can do this by clicking on the ellipsis and then Share. From here, you can change the settings to be anyone with the link: 

Public Card sharing: 

I just double checked the Card that you linked, and it looks like the share setting is still only your Guru team, which would explain why you can’t view it without being asked to log in. If you navigate to the ellipsis in the bottom left hand corner of the Card, can you change the setting to Public? It will look like this: 

Please let me know if this information is helpful!

Userlevel 3

Hey Devon! 

Thanks for the reply! 


It sounds like the only way to use this option is to make the file publicly accessible? That would defeat my use case here! If you have an idea on a workaround that would be great! 


  • RE the post title: When I tried to edit the post I was only able to edit the content not the title
  • I have the Collection set to be Public and it was setup this way from the start.
  • When I try to edit an existing card in this Collection I cannot make any changes except to content - there is no “next” only “Publish”


  • When I try to create a new card, I’m told it’s not allowed to be public which contradicts the settings in the first screenshot. There’s only one group with access, set to Collection Owner, of which I am the only member. 


Userlevel 3

Basically - we don’t want people to see that the file is stored on Drive or be able to access the link to it directly, only via Guru. 

Userlevel 3

@Siobhan Hyser Hi Siobhan! Unfortunately the only way that users who are viewing the Guru Public Card link would be able to view the file is if you set the Drive file access to anyone with the link. There are a few other options here:

  • If you are only sharing the Guru Card with specific users and you know their emails, you could input specific email addresses into the Drive sharing settings for that file
  • Have you considered downloading the file onto your computer, and then uploading it to the Guru Card? If the file is hosted by Guru (as opposed to embedding it from Drive), users with the Guru Card link will be able to view the file when they click on the Public link

The Public Card issue seems like it is a bug, so I am going to escalate this to our Technical Support team - they’ll be in touch as soon as possible over email to troubleshoot with you further. Thank you!

Userlevel 3

Hey @Devon O'Dwyer ! 


Thanks so much for that tip! I was definitely overlooking the local option as I don’t own the files. I will reach out to the Operations team to see if we can do that. 

For some context, businesses often need certain tax documents like residency or W8 (US). At present, agents download the file from Drive then attach the PDF. Sharing a Drive folder publicly seems risky but many agents downloading a file and continuing to use it could mean they miss an update and send an out of date PDF. 


I’ll give this a try with a local doc and go from there. 🎉


Userlevel 3

I was able to update the Public setting via the 3-dot menu on the card once it’s published, if that helps the devs troubleshoot.