How do I transfer photos from my iPhone to my Windows desktop without going through an external network? I used to be able to plug the phone into the computer with a USB cable and it would show up as a drive in Windows Explorer, then I could right click and select "Import Photos and Videos". But now after I installed an update to iTunes, it's not showing up in Windows Explorer any more after I plug it in.

This happened before in this question, but I already installed all the Windows updates available, and I also restarted my computer, and I have the latest iTunes (, and the latest iOS (9.3.2), so now I don't know what it could be. It was working a week ago.

This articles describes what I used to do, but it's not showing up in Explorer. https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201302

1 Answer 1


OK I found out the problem! You have to have a photo on the phone for it to even appear in Windows Explorer! I was testing out a new cable to see if it worked and the phone didn't show up (but did iTunes sync). So I switched back to the old cable I knew worked and it still wouldn't show up and got me worried! I took a screenshot to generate a photo and now it shows up in Explorer. This was not obvious at all.


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