This page lists various terminology used in Google Apps Script and describes its meaning.

Active user

The user (Google account) that causes a script to execute. Depending on the execution method this may be different from the effective user. You can also think of this as the user at the keyboard.

More information: Scripts and Google Accounts


An Apps Script project that extends the functionality of a Google product such as Google Docs or Sheets. Add-ons can be published publicly to allow others to use them, or published for use only within a particular domain.

More information: Add-ons Overview


A Google product that can contain scripts. For example, Google Sheets and Docs are both containers because new scripts can be created and be accessed from each of these products. Creating a script in a container typically makes it easier to access and manipulate the data in the container, but container-bound scripts are not recommended for projects you want to publish (for that, use standalone scripts).

More information: Container-bound Scripts

Effective user

The user (Google account) under whose identity a script executes. Depending on the execution method this may be different than the active user. The permissions of the effective user are used in the execution context.

More information: Scripts and Google Accounts


A script project that can be included into other scripts, allowing for common code to be shared. Unlike installing a script from the gallery, adding a library does not copy the script into your account. When adding a library you specify a version to use, as well as an identifier to reference it by.

More information: Libraries, Versions

Script project

A collection of files and resources in Google Apps Script, sometimes referred to simply as "the script". The script editor always has one and only one project opened at any given time. You can open multiple projects in multiple browser windows or tabs.

More Information: Projects

Shared drive

A type of organizational space within Google Drive that is shared among multiple people. Files within a shared drive are not owned by individuals, but by the group of collaborators. Formerly known as "Team Drives".

More information: Shared drives overview

Standalone script

A script that is accessible from Google Drive. Unlike a container-bound script, it isn't attached to any specific Google product, like Docs or Sheets.

More information: Scripts and Containers

Team Drive

See Shared drive.


A resource in the project that causes a function to be run when a specified event takes place. Triggers can be created for user initiated events such as opening a spreadsheet or changing a cell value, or for time based events that fire every day, hour, etc.

More information: Understanding Triggers


A snapshot of a script at a given point in time. Versions are automatically assigned a number when they are created, and a description can optionally be added.

More information: Versions, Libraries

Web app

A script which has been deployed such that users can access it using only a URL. This was previously known as publishing the script as a "service".

More information: Web Apps