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How do I transfer photos from an iphone 4S to my PC?

60697 Views 24 Replies Latest reply: Feb 2, 2014 12:37 PM by Ricardo Reis RSS Branched to a new discussion.
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treefrog75 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Sep 22, 2012 4:00 AM

Hi there,


My wife took a bunch of photos on her work iPhone 4S that I am struggling to transfer to my PC. Here are the things I have tried and failed:


  • using iTunes - iTunes apparently backed up the iPhone onto my hard drive, but I can't figure out where this is; there is no "Photo" option under the iPhone subheading in the list on the left hand side of the iTunes window; clicking the photos tab on the iPhone window in iTunes invites me to sync photos from itunes to the phone, but not from the phone to iTunes (there's my suggestion for the next iTunes upgrade!)
  • Using Windows Explorer - this method was recommended on numerous places I looked, but for me the iPhone never appears as an external drive on my PC... one place I looked at suggested that it may be necessary to turn off the passcode on the iPhone - apparently this is impossible because my wife's work IT people forbid it (I can see why, but where's the trust people?)
  • Using third party software... OK, I havent tried this... for three reasons:


  1. Are you out of your mind? I need third-party software for an iPhone to do what every digital camera and mobile phone I have ever owned has let me do on a plug-and-play basis - where's the seamless design rationale behind that?;
  2. I'd prefer not to pay for software to do what every digital camera and mobile phone I have ever owned has let me do for free; and
  3. Are you out of your mind?


I'm obviously making this more difficult than it needs to be - I'm sure there is some simple 6 second solution to resolve this that I've not thought of, because all the other file types - music etc I can move from device to device via iTunes with no problem. It just seems to be photos I'm struggling with. Is there an iTunes setting I'm missing? Maybe I need to look harder to where all this stuff backs-up (any info on that would be great), but in my experience these kind of back-ups rarely happenas a file-for-file mirror, but usually as some impenetrable consolidated fle that I lack the expertise to unzip.


For the moment we are emailing these files off the phone, but please don't expect me to believe that this is Apple's master plan for ease of use!!


I hope that this provides all the relevant info to solve the problem. I am completely aware that there is probably some really easy solution to this; I'm new to iPhones, so don't spare my blushes by holding back on the obvious!



iPhone 4S, Windows 7
  • BigBopper Level 1 Level 1 (120 points)

    Have you tried searching in Apple's Support area? I found this article that has the basics .


    Basically, there are two options. 1- in iTunes, you can turn on importing to Photoshop. or 2 - enable viewing the iPhone as mass storage when it is connected. That is has to be enabled in the Control Panel.


    These comments are based on a guess that you are using some recent version of Windows. You didn't tell us what environment you are in. To use the cliche, on a Mac, it would just work. And iTunes is not available for LINUX.

  • Kens713 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I use either iPhoto, not sure if its available for PC, or a program called Kodak easy share



    is available in PCM/Mac install, launch connect phone it'll recognize it and prompt you from there. Kodak does a nice job of editing and printing right from the app. Hope this helps.

  • BigBopper Level 1 Level 1 (120 points)

    On all of the Windows PCs that I have tried, the iPhone is recognized as a camera when it is connected via USB.  The first time you connect the iPhone, the system gives some choices as to how to connect. If it does show up as a camera, you can access the pictures in the Camera Roll just like any other camera.


    Did you ever tell the PC to ignore the iPhone?

  • BigBopper Level 1 Level 1 (120 points)

    I'm sorry that I can give you only limtied help on using a Windows PC. I do all my iPhone interactiosn on a Mac. I can tell you that every time I have conencted my iPhone to a Windows machine, there has been a pop-up saying that a new device was recognized and askign what to do with it.  I just tried this on my work laptop (Windows 7). The iPhoen shows up in Windows Explorer under Computer -> Portable Devices. Right clicking provides an option to import photos.


    Note that on a Mac, the behavior is similar. iTunes does not actually manage the photos. What it does manage is syncign of photos from the computer to the iPhone. Importing of photos from the iPhone and then managing those is handled by a separate application. On a Mac, that means iPhoto or Aperture typically.


    Be sure to check out the Apple Support articles. seems pertinent.

  • lawrywaiter Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    On a Windows PC the easiest way to get pictures from your iPhone is to just use Windows Explorer, but there’s two ways to go about this:

    • Plugin your iPhone to the computer without iTunes running

    • Wait for a popup asking you what you want to do with the device

    • Select “View Content”

    • Find your photos through the folders that are displayed

    • Copy in Windows as usual


    <Edited By Host>

  • RajaRani Level 4 Level 4 (1,360 points)

    As I read elsewhere in discussions, the backup created by iTunes backs up photos and videos but these can't be viewed as photos/videos there. You need to transfer your Camera roll to PC periodically and as often as possible.


    Hope these will answer you question.


  (of course link in the previous link)

  • Carlloser Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    All you need to do is:

    iTunes>Click the iPhone on the left tabs>Info>Contacts>Sync

    Thats how i did it and it worked!

    Or Download a software named "iPhone Transfer". It will do the job and you can also back up all your iPhone files for the future in case you face a computer crash or loose.


    Download here

  • DOK-Bos Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    My PC would not recognize my iphone when I opened Windows Explorer. You can look at two things.


    1) Go to Control Panel and Devices. Next to the iphone icon, there was an exclamation point indicating that I was missing a driver. Right click on the iphone icon, choose Troubleshoot, download, and apply the new driver. Now when I click on My Computer the iphone appears. You can open the iphone and go to the DCIM folder and drag and drop the photos to a folder on your C: drive.


    2) You can also check the Autoplay in Control Panel/Hardware and Sound. Scoll to the bottom under devices and make sure the drop down is not set to Take No Action. Set it to Ask me every time if it is.

  • mattis2 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 24, 2013 8:55 AM (in response to DOK-Bos)

    If you are plugging you iPhone into your Windows PC, and it doesn't show up in Windows Explorer, try to use "refresh", which is done by pressing the F5 key. And/or be patient. Sometimes it might take several minutes before the computer is recognizing you phone.

  • catmontsin Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Simple, I just learned how to do this.  Using your phone recharging cord, plug it into your iPhone and then into a usb port on your PC and you should get the "autoplay" screen that opens whenever you plug anything into the usb port, like your camera or flash drive.  Then just click dowload pictures or videos.

  • 22jeffers Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    lawrywaiter (above) is right here!!!!


    It's by all means not clear but all you need to do is turn off (exit) iTunes and then plug your iphone into the usb, then windows explorer will see it.  It's like you can only see it one or the other.


    This was annoying me for months until I read that and it worked straight away.

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