How to set up a Mac for Google Workspace

    Here are 5 methods to configure your macOS system to work with Gmail, Google Drive and different Google Workspace apps.

    Illustration: Andy Wolber/TechRepublic

    More about Cloud

    Apple’s Mac techniques work nicely with Google Workspace apps, akin to Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Drive, Docs, Sheets and Slides. Each of the 5 choices beneath permits you to leverage your Google account from macOS, starting from the only setup to the deeper connections that hyperlink knowledge both to Apple’s apps or enable Google Drive entry from the Finder. Many individuals could need to check in to a brand new Mac and configure all 5 of the choices lined beneath.
    SEE: iCloud vs. OneDrive: Which is greatest for Mac, iPad and iPhone customers? (free PDF) (TechRepublic)
    If you’re a part of a company, chances are you’ll have to comply with procedures aside from those listed beneath. Both Google Workspace and Apple Business Manager provide varied enterprise administration choices that enable an administrator to simplify sign-ins, safe units and management configurations. Check along with your system administrator for pointers particular to your group.
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    Use Safari for a streamlined setup
    Once you end the macOS preliminary setup course of and have put in all obtainable system updates, chances are you’ll begin Safari, go to Gmail after which check in along with your Google Workspace account credentials. After you’re logged in, chances are you’ll entry different Workspace apps both from the app launcher menu (Figure A) or by typing in any Workspace app URL straight (e.g., for Google Docs). Since most Google Workspace options work nicely inside Safari, this method permits you to get to work rapidly.
    Figure A
    Sign in to your Google account in Safari and use Google Workspace apps on-line.
    However, as of January 2023, Google Workspace apps don’t provide offline entry when utilized in Safari on a Mac. If you should use Gmail, Calendar or Drive in your Mac with out web entry, you’ll need to discover the extra steps beneath. However, in case your Mac at all times has web entry and offline work isn’t a priority for you, then the mix of Google Workspace apps accessed in Safari could also be enough.
    Install Chrome for full-featured work on the net
    Most individuals who plan to work with Google Workspace on a Mac will need to set up Chrome (Figure B), then check in and use that browser for all Workspace-related actions.
    Figure B
    To allow offline work, obtain Chrome for macOS, then configure apps akin to Gmail, Google Calendar and Google Drive for offline entry. You additionally could sync Chrome settings, akin to bookmarks and historical past, with Chrome on varied units.
    This method not solely means that you can configure and sync knowledge for bookmarks, historical past, passwords and extra throughout each Chrome browser you employ, nevertheless it additionally means that you can configure Workspace apps for offline work. You might want to modify just a few permission settings, akin to permitting entry to the webcam and microphone for Google Meet, with extra changes wanted to allow screen-sharing.
    Sign in with Google to attach knowledge to Apple apps
    You could check in along with your Google account and set it to sync Workspace knowledge to Apple’s apps. To do that, choose Apple Menu > System Settings… > Internet Accounts > Add Account… > Google, after which proceed via the sign-in course of (Figure C).
    Figure C
    From Apple Menu > System Settings, choose Internet Accounts, then Add Account as proven on the left. Next, select Google, as proven on the appropriate, and full the authentication course of.
    In most instances, you’ll want to allow the sliders for Mail, Contacts and Calendars, which permits these apps to sync Gmail, Google Contacts and Google Calendar knowledge to every app, respectively. You might also need to go to the Google Calendar Sync Settings software on the net to pick out particular Google Calendars to sync with iCal.
    Adding your Google account within the Apple system settings could be helpful for offline knowledge entry in apps in addition to whenever you need system actions to stay in sync along with your Google account. For instance, whenever you click on on a “mailto:” hyperlink on an online web page, the system can open the Apple Mail app and create a brand new e-mail that’s despatched from and synced to your Google Workspace account.
    Deploy Google Drive for desktop for system entry to Drive information
    Download and set up Google Drive for desktop (Figure D), then check in to your account so as to entry information on Google Drive from the Finder. This permits you, for instance, to begin an app in your system and from inside that app open a file saved on Drive.
    Figure D
    For system entry to Google Drive information from the Finder, set up Google Drive for desktop.
    For occasion, you may begin a macOS photograph modifying app after which open a picture file saved on Google Drive. Drive for desktop eliminates the necessity to open a browser, obtain a file, work with the file, then add it once more. Instead, Drive for desktop means that you can open and save gadgets on to Drive on a Mac.
    Configure Chrome Remote Desktop for distant entry
    You could need to set up and configure Chrome Remote Desktop to permit distant entry to your system both by different individuals whenever you request it, akin to for help functions, or by your self, akin to for a desktop system you need to entry remotely.
    To configure Chrome Remote Desktop, you should have put in Chrome in your system. Assuming you do, open Chrome and go to to begin the set up and setup course of (Figure E). Once accomplished, you’ll be capable of entry your system remotely from Chrome Remote Desktop.
    Figure E
    Configure Chrome Remote Desktop to permit distant entry to your system, both for help or in your personal use from one other pc.
    What’s your expertise with Google Workspace on macOS?
    If you employ Google Workspace on a Mac, which of the above apps and configurations do you employ? Are you a minimalist who prefers to solely check in to Google instruments with Safari? Do you’re employed with Google Workspace solely via Chrome for macOS? Or do you join your Google accounts to Apple’s Mail, Calendar and Contacts apps and depend on Drive and Remote Desktop, too? Mention or message me on Mastodon (@awolber) to let me know what kind of Google Workspace setup you employ in your Mac.

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