The easiest ways to bulk download files from Microsoft SharePoint

Unlike in the past, bulk downloads from SharePoint are an effortless task. Albeit we must admit, while not present a giant bulk delete button would be nice. Instead, you need to know more about bulk-selecting as opposed to outright bulk downloading at the two-work hand in hand. 

Situation Method 
Download everything Ctrl + A (Windows) / Cmd + A (macOs) Select download 
Group of targets (next to each other Click the upmost target Shift + click the bottom-most target Select download 
Group of separated targets (files/folders in-between) Ctrl + click each target Select download 

While it might sound confusing at first, we promise to relief any baffled thoughts about bulk downloading with our image guided explanations of each method.

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Bulk downloading everything in a SharePoint document directory 

Ctrl + A/Cmd + A method explained 

  • This method functions by simultaneously selecting all accessible files and folders within your current directory.  
  • When you perform an action it will be performed on all targets. 
  • This allows you to bulk download all the files in your directory. 
  • You can unselect everything via the shortcut ctrl + d on Windows or cmd + d on macOs 

Bulk downloading neighbouring files/folders in a SharePoint document directory 

Shift click method explained 

  • This method functions by manually selecting two points, to automatically, additionally select everything in-between them. 
  • If you accidentally include some files you don’t want to download, they can be unselected. 
  • To unselect a file whilst keeping other files selected, ctrl click the unwanted file (cmd click for macOs) 
  • You can also ctrl click a file not already selected to add it to your selection 
  • You can ctrl + shift click to add a separate group of neighbouring files to your selection (or remove them, were they already selected) 
  • The two points initially selected are included in your selection too. 
  • This allows you to bulk download files close together. 

Bulk downloading separated files in a SharePoint document directory 

Ctrl/cmd click method explained 

  • This method functions by selecting a file at one point in the file, any additional number of files from anywhere within the directory (without selecting the files between the ones you already selected prior) 
  • You can still include files between your selection points by ctrl/cmd shift clicking 

Methods overview for SharePoint bulk downloading 

Which method is the best to use 

To be truthful, no method is generally “the best” at bulk downloading as it’s dependant on how your files are organized, whether you’d like to download everything in your directory, or whether you’d just like to download a small sample of files. 

For instance, the ctrl clicking method is ideal for bypassing bothersome file sort orders, but its slow and thus made useless if you’re desired files are all next to each other.  

Similarly, while faster, the shift clicking method can be a bother to use if you wish to target a series of files which aren’t placed close together.  

Lastly, the ctrl + a method selects everything, making the file sort order meaningless. Despite this, it’s only good for bulk downloading everything. 

Method Application Speed 
Ctrl + A / Command + A Bulk downloading all files within your current directory Fastest 
Shift clicking Selecting groups of neighbouring files close to one another Mid 
Ctrl/Command clicking Selecting groups or individual files, separated by unwanted files in between Slowest (most of the time) 

End note 


Within this post we’ve briefed you on the various ways to bulk download your files and/or folders in SharePoint. Initially we covered the ctrl + a method for bulk downloading everything in your current directory. Next, we covered the shit clicking method for bulk downloading groups of files and/or folders which are next to one another. Finally, we concluded by discussing the ctrl clicking method, for selecting multiple files and/or folders, regardless of them being close/far from one another. 


As usual, this section is dedicated to thanking readers for their support. We’d be pleased to know you found this post useful and/or informative. If you have any more SharePoint related queries, please consult our related articles (listed below). However, if you have other queries, consider looking at the rest of the site. We’re frequently posting new stuff each week and may just have the guide or troubleshooting tips you need. Regardless, we wish you a good day/night. Farewell readers. 

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Jack Mitchell

Jack Mitchell has been the Operations manager at telecoms and MSP Optionbox for more than 4 years. He has played a crucial role in the company, from marketing to helpdesk, and ensures that the IT requirements of over 300 clients are continuously met. With his innate passion for technology and troubleshooting and a particular interest in Apple products, Jack now delivers the most comprehensive tech guides to make your life easier. You can connect with Jack on LinkedIn.

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