I find it very complicated to move photos taken with my iPhone into my pc's photo library.

I used to take photos with a compact camera, and pc applications could very easily import the photos because the compact camera shows up as a USB disk -- this way, importing photos was almost a one-click process!

But the iPhone doesn't show up as a disk, and that makes it very messy. I've tried to sync using iTunes, but syncing is not what I want to achieve. I want to move the pics away from the iPhone! I've tried moving them using iFunBox, and while that works, it creates the problem that all photos to get a new timestamp which ruins my photo library.

How can I easily move photos and videos from iPhone to PC without using iTunes syncing, and keeping the files' original timestamps?

I'm using Windows 7, and the phone is already jailbroken. I'm looking for a solution that will allow Windows to see the phone's native file system as a normal USB drive from which I can import the pics&vids using a Windows program -- or any other solution that comes as close as possible to this.

Based on the solutions so far it is clear that extra pc applications won't help. What I need instead is some way of getting the damn phone to present itself to Windows using a drive letter, just like any other disk resource or compact camera does.

This is a good example where I think Apple is being too restrictive with their products; if people want access, then let them have it. If they break it, it's their problem. That's what backups are for. "It just works" only works if you stick by Apple's intended use, and that doesn't include Windows drive letters.

  • Are you willing to consider options that become available after jailbreaking?
    – pauldunlop
    Commented Dec 14, 2010 at 13:55
  • Yes, jailbreaking is not a problem. If there's some Cydia app that lets me see the iPhone's native file system as a normal USB disk, I'll take it! Commented Dec 14, 2010 at 14:01
  • Being able to retrieve photos you took with your iphone on any machine should be straight forward, even without jailbreaking. What you can not do without a lot of tweaking is retrieving pictures you upload to your iphone through iTunes.
    – cregox
    Commented Dec 23, 2010 at 12:44
  • related: apple.stackexchange.com/questions/5096/…
    – cregox
    Commented Dec 23, 2010 at 20:57

6 Answers 6


When I connect my iPhone to a Windows machine, it does appear as a digital camera and allows me to copy files from the DCIM folder or to use the "Import Pictures" option from Windows.

I just tried this in a Windows 7 VM and was able to view all the pictures in my Camera Roll. From there, I could drag and drop pictures to my desktop.

I don't have iTunes installed in the Windows 7 VM.

It works the same way in my Windows XP machine, at work. There it is a physical machine and I have iTunes installed, but I can copy the pictures from the iPhone without syncing, anyway.

  • Thank you! This sounds like what I had expected. Not sure why my machine is always different. Just my luck. I may need to reinstall the whole **** machine and see if that helps. Commented Dec 17, 2010 at 6:41
  • 1
    When I connect my iPhone, I don't get a new drive letter for it. Instead of K:\DCIM\800AAAAA I just get the very cryptic address Computer\Torbens iPhone 4\Internal Storage\DCIM\800AAAAA which my programs can't use. Maybe I should kill this question and instead ask, How do I get Windows to assign a drive letter to my iPhone? Commented Dec 19, 2010 at 7:19
  • 1
    I don't get a new drive letter either. It appears as a digital câmera, under Computer. It doesn't appear in Computer Management under Storage --> Drive Management either. But despite that I can recover pictures/videos from the iPhone using Windows Explorer.
    – lpacheco
    Commented Dec 20, 2010 at 1:06
  • @torbengb samething for me as for ipacheco. on windows I have tried with my iphone, it just works. try this: discussions.apple.com/message.jspa?messageID=6352553
    – cregox
    Commented Dec 23, 2010 at 12:52
  • Thanks for your inputs! I'll need to spend some time on the home computer and try out your suggestions, and also check out the discussion Cawas mentioned, and an Apple support page: support.apple.com/kb/TS1538 I'll report back. Commented Dec 23, 2010 at 14:39

What about this solution?

With the plug-in you can manage music, videos, podcasts and photos for your iPod. You can >add all those files to your iPod, delete and organize them into playlists as well as smart >playlists.

Install WinAmp + mliPod on your computer

To manage your iPod you need two files, WinAmp itself and the above mentioned plug-in mliPod.

Download directly from WinAmp

Download mliPod


Have you seen the free app, WiFi Photo Transfer?

Not sure about timestamps on video, but it's great for quickly grabbing photos and video off your iOS device. Especially since it will zip up photos.

  • I didn't know about this app. Still seems far from "one-click", but if it can ZIP all the pics&vids and remove them from the phone then it would be a good interim solution. I'll try it out. Commented Dec 14, 2010 at 15:29
  • Tried it with limited success: It only supports photos, not videos, and the "ZIP download" requires me to manually check a box for each relevant photo - so I'd have to click 214 checkboxes and still miss the videos. And it will only COPY the pics, not MOVE them (and there's no way to mass-delete them from the phone). Still, thanks for the suggestion! Commented Dec 14, 2010 at 18:25
  • It does work for video I believe - but yes as you mentioned it won't remove them from the phone. Built in "Image Capture" app does this in OS X, but that doesn't help you're on a PC :) Commented Dec 14, 2010 at 21:47

Creation and modification dates in the Finder or in Windows are never completely reliable as they can be changed by almost anything (as you have noticed). The photos have the real time stamps held internally in the files themselves and any image management software should be going by those, not by what you see in the OS' file system,

Applications like iFunBox on Windows and Image Capture on the Mac to manage file downloads from devices are really the only alternatives to iTunes or iLife.

UPDATE: Do not jailbreak your iPhone. It's usually unnecessary and it voids your warranty. One viable option is to look at PhoneView which offers a disk mode. You don't say what platform you're on, but I've used that in the past on my Mac before I purchased iLife.

I think no matter what, the creation and modification dates in the OS are going to be problematic for you because the files will be new to the OS.

  • 1
    Yes, pics contain EXIF and my importer can deal with that ... but videos don't, and they end up separated from the pics :'-( Also, using iFunBox is a pain for a task that should be so simple. I'm wondering if user Chops can come up with a JB app that's smarter than I am. Commented Dec 14, 2010 at 14:04
  • The "disk mode" is irrelevant; I don't want to use the phone as a storage device, I want to read from it's native file system. The photo feature seems to offer exactly what iFunBox does, but less. I've already jailbroken, and don't care about warranty (things are different outside the States). I did mention I'm on PC, meaning Windows 7 to be exact, sorry if this wasn't too clear - I think Mac users refer to their machines as "my Mac" rather than "my pc". Commented Dec 14, 2010 at 15:34
  • jailbreaking does not void any warranty as far as I can tell. It's a legal procedure just not really well seem by apple.
    – cregox
    Commented Dec 23, 2010 at 12:49

I think you can do this by using Diskaid - http://www.digidna.net/products/diskaid

It works for Win7 and for both jailbroken and non-j... phones.

You could also give Sharepod at getsharepod.com a try.

  • Thank you for the suggestion! DiskAid does what PhoneView and iFunBox also do; they grant access to the files inside that program. Like the others, DiskAid allows me to copy but not move the images; I have to delete the files manually afterwards. DiskAid is nicer-looking and easier to use than the free iFunBox but not enough for me to warrant the $10 license. Commented Dec 19, 2010 at 7:24

Here's how I fixed it in Windows 7:
* Press the Windows Start Button
* Select Devices and Printers
* Find the Apple iPhone icon (for me it was under Unspecified)
* Right-click
* Select Troubleshoot

That fixed it and then I was able to browse the phone like a regular drive

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .