See all your photos - Microsoft Support (2022)

The Photos app in Windows 11 gathers photos from your PC, phone, cloud storage accounts, and other devices, and puts them in one place where you can more easily find what you’re looking for. 

To get started, in the search box on the taskbar, type photos and then select the Photosapp from the results. Or, select Open the Photos app using the link below:

Open the Photos app

Help the app find more photos

The Photos app automatically displays the photos and videos in the Pictures folder on your PC and OneDrive. Here’s how to add more source folders to the Pictures folder.

  1. In the search box on the taskbar, type photos and then select thePhotosapp from the results.

  2. Go to Folders in the left navigation bar.

  3. Select Add a folder.

  4. Find the folder on your PC that you'd like the Photos app to include, and choose Select Folder to add it to the app.

    The Photos app will show updated content from the new folders as you add and remove content.

Copying content: If you copy a photo, video, or folder in the Photos app, the content remains in its original location and a duplicate is added to the newly specified location.

Moving content: If you move a photo, video, or folder in the Photos app, the content location on your device will also be moved. For example, the folder will no longer exist at its original location.

Removing content: If you no longer want a photo, video, or folder to appear in Photos, you can remove it by right clicking(or select and hold) the item name in the left navigation bar. Removing a folder from the Photos app does not delete that folder’s contents from your Windows machine.

Deleting content: If you delete photos or videos stored in folders from the Photos app, they are permanently deleted from your Windows machine.

Import photos and videos

You can import photos and videos you have stored on a camera’s SD card, a USB drive, a phone, or on another device.

  1. Use a USB cable to connect your device to the PC.

  2. In the search box on the taskbar, type photos and then select thePhotosapp from the results.

  3. Select Import from the App bar.

  4. Your devices will automatically show under Connected devices. Choose your device from the list of connected devices.

  5. Select the photos and videos you would like to import.

  6. Choose the location of the destination folder for import.

  7. Decide if you want to permanently delete the photos and videos from your importing device by checking or unchecking the Delete items after importbutton.

    Warning:Checking the Delete items after import buttonpermanently removes the photos or videos from your importing device.

  8. Select Confirm to move the photos and videos.

    Note:If you're using an Android phone and Import isn't working, you might need to change your phone's USB setting to allow it to transfer photos.

Connect to OneDrive

The Photos app can connect to your OneDrive account so you can see all your photos and videos in one place. You can view these on the OneDrive tab in the Photos app onceyou’ve connected to OneDrive. The OneDrive tab in the Photos app only displays photos and videos that are stored in the “Pictures” folder on OneDrive.

When you view a photo or video in your cloud collection, it automaticallydownloadsto your Windows machine. Oncedownloaded, any changes you make to that photo or video file (move, edit, delete) willsyncback to your cloud.

In the Photos app’s OneDrive tab, you'll see your personal albums and features such as OneDrive memories. The OneDrive memories are automatically generated by OneDrive, notthe Photos app. Selecting OneDrive Memories or albums in the Photos app takes you to their location on OneDrive web.

To connect to OneDrive in the Photos app:

  1. In the search box on the taskbar, type photos and then select thePhotosapp from the results.

  2. Go to OneDrive in the left navigation bar.

  3. Select the Sign in button to sign in to your OneDrive account. Provide the app permissions to access your info.

    You can control whether OneDrive is connected to the Photos app under the Photo app’s settings.

Moving or copying content: Changes made to your OneDrive content are made to both the content stored on your Windows machine and to the content on OneDrive. Changes made to OneDrive content on Windows are also synced to OneDrive.

Deleting content: If you delete OneDrive photos, videos, or folders from the Photos app, they are sent to your Window’s recycle bin from the folder they came from on your Windows machine. They will also be deleted from your OneDrive account. Deleted files will be available in the OneDrive recycle bin for 30 days, after which time they will be permanently deleted.

Upload mobile photos and videos to OneDrive automatically

One of the simplest ways to copy all your photos and videos to one place in the Photos app is to set up automatic upload to OneDrive of Photos from your mobile device.

  1. Open the Photos app, go to OneDrive in the left navigation bar and sign in to OneDrive on your Windows PC.

  2. Install the OneDrive app on your iOS or Android device.

  3. From the OneDrive app on your iOS or Android device, turn onCamera Uploadin the OneDrive app’s settings. The latest photos and videos that you take will automatically start uploading to OneDrive.

Once uploaded to OneDrive, those photos and videos will automatically appear in the Photos app on your PC if you have OneDrive connected to your Photos app. 

Connect to iCloud

The Photos app can also connect to your photos collection on iCloud. The Photos app only reads from your iCloud account; changes made to your iCloud collection on your Windows machine do not sync back to iCloud. The Photos app does not show favorites from iCloud or iCloud albums.

To connect to iCloud:

  1. In the search box on the taskbar, type photos and then select thePhotosapp from the results.

  2. Goto the iCloud tab.

  3. Select the Get iCloud for Windows button. You will be prompted to go to the Microsoft Store and download the iCloud for Windows app.

  4. Open the iCloud for Windows app, sign in to iCloud with your Apple ID, and then choose Photoson the iCloud app to view your iCloud media in the Photos app.

  5. Open or go back to the Photos app and go to the iCloud tab. You will be able to see all your iCloud content.

    You can control whether iCloud is connected to the Photos app under the Photos app’s settings.

Moving, copying, or deleting content: When you make changes to iCloud content, those changes are only made to the content stored on your Windows machine. Those changes are not synced back to iCloud.

Previous legacy versions of the Photos app gather photos from your PC, phone, and other devices, and put them in one place where you can more easily find what you’re looking for. 

To get started, in the search box on the taskbar, type photos and then select the Photosapp from the results. Or, selectOpen the Photos app using the link below:

Open the Photos app

Find photos fast

See all your photos - Microsoft Support (1)

You'reable to browse your collection by date, album, video project,folder, or tags you have applied to your photos. You also have the option of turning on the facialgrouping featureas another way of finding photos in your collection. Facial grouping finds similar faces across photos or videos and sorts those groupings into albums,allowing you to tag those albums with nicknames you choose. This feature can be turned on or off in the Photos app'ssettings pageand in the People tab. Learn more aboutthe facial grouping feature.

For more information about the data that's collected and stored when you use the previous legacy versions of the Photos app, see "Photos legacy" in the "Photos" section in thePrivacy Statement.

Upload photos automatically

One of the simplest ways to copy all your photos and videos to one place in the Photos app is to set up automatic upload to OneDrive from your mobile device.

  1. Sign in to your OneDrive account in the Photos app by selecting the person icon in the top right corner. Install the OneDrive app on your iOS or Android device.

  2. On your iOS or Android device, turn on Camera Uploadin the OneDrive app's settings. The latest photos and videos that you take will automatically start uploading.

Once uploaded, photos and videos will automatically appear in the Photos app on your PC.

Get more help transferring photos and videos from your Android device or iPhone to a PC. 

Import photos and videos

You can import photos and videos you have stored on a camera’s SD card, a USB drive, or on another device.

  1. Use a USB cable to connect your device to the PC.

  2. In the search box on the taskbar, type photos and then select thePhotos appfrom the results.

  3. SelectImportand follow the instructions to import from a folder or a USB device. The app automatically selects items you haven't imported before, or you can choose what to import.

    Note:If you’re using an Android phone and Import isn’t working, you might need to change your phone’s USB setting to allow it to transfer photos.

Help the app find more photos

The Photos app automatically displays the photos and videos in the Pictures folder on your PC and OneDrive. Here’s how to add more source folders to the Pictures folder.

  1. In the search box on the taskbar, type photos and then select thePhotos appfrom the results.

  2. Select See more > Settings.

  3. Under Sources, select Add a folder.

  4. Choose a folder from your PC, an external drive, or a network drive connected to your PC, and then select Add this folder to Picturesto add it to the Photos app.
    Subfolders of the folders that you add will be included, too.

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