I'am an iPhone + PC (Windows/Ubuntu) user. Nowadays, I'm used to download photos from iPhone to local folder, sort them and then backup them by myself (by syncing to remote disk and burning onto bluray discs also).

I like an idea of iCloud Photo Library + optimizing a storage on iPhone. For me, this also means that original photos are moved from iPhone storage into cloud, so I won't be able to download them via USB.

So, will it be possible (and easy and comfortable) to download all new photos (100+ at once) from iCloud Photo Library to local disk on PC? I mean a) download and keep on iCloud (copy), b) download and delete from iCloud (move)?

  • This is for options to download photos without access to macOS hardware.
    – bmike
    Jul 7, 2019 at 20:52

9 Answers 9

  1. Go to https://www.icloud.com/#photos.
  2. Go to Albums -- All Photos folder.
  3. Click Select Photos on top-right of the page.
  4. Select first photo and Shift-select last photo.
  5. You should see all photos are selected now.
  6. Click Download in top-middle menu.

I downloaded the icloud manager app: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204283.

Then in bottom right control panel on Windows (where the printer, volume, and wifi icons are located) clicked on the icloud icon then download photos then you can select ALL or by year.

This method doesn't prompt a thousand save as windows like doing it via icloud.com does.

  • This should be marked as the correct answer. Jan 15, 2017 at 22:00
  • Yes works like a charm in 06/2017.
    – Marco
    Jun 10, 2017 at 8:25

You can, by going to iCloud.com/#photos. Once there:

  1. Click 'Select Photos' to go into selection mode
  2. Select a photo
  3. Shift-click another photo, to select the range between the first selection and your last selection (just like in Windows/OS X, you can use Shift or Cmd/Ctrl to choose exactly what you like).
  4. Click 'Download' at the top blue bar.
  • There is no Select photos mode anymore.
    – Suncatcher
    May 3, 2018 at 8:22

The best I've seen is that you can download a "moment" at a time with the iCloud web interface, which in Chrome on a PC as of 9/23/2015, downloads a pile of individual images named "IMG_XXXX.JPG" to your downloads folder. Tedious, but at least it's not as slow as downloading individual files.

I'm thinking of running a Hackintosh virtual machine on my home PC just for the purpose running the OS X Photos app and maintaining an archive of full-resolution images while enjoying the seamless synchronization and low-resolution local storage of images on my iPhone. This is a key part of the "Apple ecosystem" that is denied to PC users that really annoys me.


iCloud for Windows from Apple allows you to download photos from iCloud Photo Library by year.

Set up and use iCloud Photo Library on your Windows PC:

New photos and videos you add to iCloud Photo Library will automatically download to your PC. You can also download your collection by year when you follow these steps:

  • Open a File Explorer window.
  • Under Favorites, click iCloud Photos.
  • Click Download Photos.
  • Choose the photos and videos you want to download and click Download.
  • Your photos and videos download to the location you set in iCloud Photos Options.

I just found a great way, this might be the longest method but it works toda.

  1. Install iCloud for Windows
  2. Sign with Apple ID, complete the setup, etc.
  3. click the icloud icon in the taskbar and hit "Download Photos" below iCloud photos.
  4. They will be in icloudphotos/download

I highly recommend ndbroadbent's fantastic Python program the icloud_photos_downloader project. The project repository can be found at his Github account: https://github.com/ndbroadbent/icloud_photos_downloader.

There are some great instructions on installation and use in the project README. Once installed, you run the program to download all your photos to a directory called foto_folder; from the terminal

./download_photos.py ../foto_folder [email protected] --password=myp@ss --size=original --download-videos

And viola, it does its magic.


There is no way (unless a special app exists) to download your iCloud Photo Library (not Photo Stream) to a Windows PC without having to use iCloud's Web Interface (icloud.com in web browser) and suffer at the hands of manually downloading your library.


For Windows, hold the Control key and select multiple items instead of Shift.

It works -- (stumbled upon it.)

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