Import photos and videos from a camera, phone, or DVD

Here are several ways to import photos and videos from your phone, camera, other device, or disc.

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Import from a phone, camera, or external drive

  1. Connect a phone, camera, storage card from your camera, or external drive to your PC.

  2. Open the Photos app.

  3. Swipe in from the bottom edge to see the app commands.
    (If you're using a mouse, right-click within the app.)

  4. Tap or click Import.

    Note

  5. Tap or click the device you want to import from.

  6. The app automatically searches for all photos and videos that it hasn’t imported before and selects them. You can also swipe down on or click each photo and video you want to import, or tap or click Select all.

  7. Tap or click Import.

The photos and videos are saved in the Pictures folder in a subfolder named with the date (for example, 2013-09-10).

Import from a DVD or CD

  1. Insert the disc into the drive.

  2. Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and then tap Search.
    (If you're using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, and then click Search.)

  3. Enter File Explorer in the search box, and then tap or click File Explorer.

  4. In the left pane, click This PC to expand the list of folders and devices.

  5. Tap or click the drive with your photos and videos.

  6. Find the photos you want to import, select them, and then copy them to a new folder. If you’d like to see them in the Photos app, copy them into the Pictures folder on your PC or in OneDrive.

Change what happens when you connect a camera, phone, disc, or other device

You can use AutoPlay to determine what happens when you connect a device to your PC. For example, set it so that every time you plug in a storage card, the Photos app opens and you select which photos and videos to import. You might need to turn on your device's multimedia transport control before AutoPlay can find it.

  • Set basic options: Open PC settings, tap or click PC and devices, and then tap or click AutoPlay.

  • Set advanced options: Open Control Panel, tap or click Hardware and Sound, and then tap or click AutoPlay.

For more info, see AutoPlay: Frequently asked questions.

Automatically upload photos and videos to a PC or OneDrive

Most devices with a wireless connection automatically upload photos and videos. This list gives suggestions on how to set up automatic uploading, but see your device manufacturer’s website for more info.

  • Windows Phone, IPhone, or Android: Install the OneDrive app and set it to upload to OneDrive.

  • Wireless storage card: Check the manufacture’s website for instructions.

  • Windows 8 and Windows RT tablets: Open PC settings, tap or click OneDrive, and then tap or click Files. Choose if you want to upload photos, videos, or both.

If the PC can’t find your device

There are many possible reasons a PC can’t see a device. Here’s a list of things to try when you get that message.

  • Try reconnecting. Start by disconnecting and reconnecting the device, and then try again. If it’s a phone or camera, make sure it’s turned on and unlocked.

  • Use a different method. If the Photos app can’t find your device, open File Explorer and see if it’s listed under This PC. If it is, try copying or moving the files into a new folder.

  • Update the drivers and check forums. With hardware changing all the time, the drivers might need updating or there might be a known problem. You can install driver updates from the manufacturer or you can use your PC’s default drivers. You can also check the Windows forum or the manufacturer’s website for more info about your specific problem.

To install updates from the manufacturer

  1. Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and then tap Search.
    (If you're using a mouse, point to the lower-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer up, and then click Search.)

  2. Enter Device Manager in the search box, tap or click Settings, and then tap or click Device Manager in the results.

  3. Expand Imaging devices.

  4. Right-click the camera that's having problems and tap or click Update Driver Software.

  5. Tap or click Search automatically for updated driver software, and then follow the on-screen instructions. This might include restarting your PC.

To install your PC's default drivers

  1. Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and then tap Search.
    (If you're using a mouse, point to the lower-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer up, and then click Search.)

  2. Enter Device Manager in the search box, tap or click Settings, and then tap or click Device Manager in the results.

  3. Expand Imaging devices.

  4. Right-click the camera that's having problems and tap or click Update Driver Software.

  5. Tap or click Browse my computer for driver software.

  6. Tap or click Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer.

  7. Select USB Video Device, click Next, and then follow the on-screen instructions. This might include restarting your PC.

Check for answers in the Microsoft community

If the suggestions here don't solve your problem, check out the Music, Photos, and Video community page in the Windows forum for solutions that other people have found for specific problems. This can be particularly helpful when you're experiencing hardware problems or error messages.

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