Phone Number:

Issue Type:

How do I preview files on Box?

Preview Overview

What is Preview?
With Preview, you can view your files from the Box app without downloading them. Preview currently supports most file types, so you can easily access your content from any browser.

How do I use Preview?

  • Preview allows you simply click on a file in your account and view it directly within the Box interface.
  • Preview is also available for users accessing file through shared links. When an individual follows a shared link to a file, they will be able to view the file on Box without downloading it.

a) Filename and information: Hover over the filename and i symbol to see version count, file size, and view/download count.

b) File navigation: Use the left and right arrows to move between files within a folder.  

c) File actions: Click the icons to access actions for the file directly from Preview. Actions will be available based on a user’s access levels.

  • Share: Click the icon to share a view-only link
  • Comment: Show/hide the Comment sidebar (f)
  • Edit: Open the file with Box Edit in its native application, on your desktop
  • Download: Save the file
  • More: Click this icon for a list of other actions you can take on the file, including:
    • Upload New Version: Select a new version of the file to overwrite the current version (previous versions are always accessible in version history)
    • Print: Print the file (Available for all users for all Box-supported document and presentation file types. Any other file types will need to be downloaded and printed from your device.)
    • Lock: Prevent other people from editing the file or uploading new versions while you make your changes
    • File Properties: Display information about the file, including access stats
    • Rotate: (Currently, rotate from the file preview page is not available, but we will be adding that support in the coming weeks.)


d) Comment box: Leave a comment in the text field and then click Add Comment. Click the x in the top-right corner of the text field to discard the comment.

e) View area: Your file can be previewed here

f) Comment sidebar: Click the double-arrow icon to close or open the comment sidebar

g) Preview Controls: Zoom out, zoom in, expand your file to fullscreen mode, or move between pages in a document from this toolbar.

What if my file isn't being displayed properly? 
The content previewer will display most documents without issue, but if you do encounter a problem, we recommend downloading the file to your computer. The native application that the file was created in may more accurately display and print the file's contents. Additionally, users accessing Box Preview on Internet Explorer 7 or 8 may note that files in Preview are rendered as images, instead of PDFs as on more modern browsers. If you are using IE7 or IE8, you may not be able to select text or click hyperlinks; you'll need to download the file to access its full functionality. 

What file types are supported?
Check our complete list of supported file types.

Is there a file size limit for Preview?
Files up to 100MB in size can be previewed.

What browsers support the new Preview?
The new Preview is supported by all the browsers officially supported by Box.

Was this article helpful?
17 out of 27 found this helpful