Google Photos Backup app (Desktop Uploader)

This page will no longer be valid after May 12, 2018 and will be removed. 

This section contains information about the Google Photos Backup application (desktop uploader) to upload all your photos and videos to Google Photos in your Google Account. Uploads can be made from your Windows or Mac computer and from any phone, camera, storage card or other device that is connected and synced to the application. 

In July 2017, the help center for the desktop uploader no longer existed because the app was replaced with Google's Backup & Sync app.  

On May 12, 2018, the Desktop Uploader will no longer function. Google suggests using Backup & Sync - please see our warnings about the Backup & Sync app here


How to set up and use the Google Photos Desktop Uploader:
GPB backup program runs in your system tray (a pinwheel icon) and watches for photos to be copied to the computer. 

The photos that are added to any folder being "watched" by Google Photos Backup (GPB) will be automatically uploaded to the Google Photos (GP) website and will appear in the Photos collection, sometimes referred to as the "Library" or "Stream" or "Timeline." These photos are not "Synced," but are merely uploaded. Which means that after a photo is automatically uploaded, edits to the photo on the PC will NOT change the "backup" copy stored at Google Photos. If you edit a photo on the PC and want it to be uploaded, you will have to rename the photo to a different name in order for GPB to notice it. You'll then have a backup of the unedited photo plus the edited photo, but with different file names. 
Google replaced the Desktop Uploader by the "Backup & Sync" app. but you can still download/install it:
  1. Download and install the Google Photos Backup app (Desktop Uploader) from TC Peter's OneDrive here
  2. You will be asked for settings if this is the first time it is installed, otherwise find the GPB icon in your system tray (the right side of the task bar) and click it. The GPB Icon looks like a 4 color pinwheel in the Google colors.
  3. Go to settings and choose the settings you want for your situation:
    1. Make sure GPB is using the correct Google Account. If not, sign out then sign in to the correct account.
    2. In "Backup sources" only select "Cameras and memory cards" if you will be attaching them to your computer to upload the photos directly to GP. 
    3. Check-mark "Also copy photos/videos from external media to" and select a destination folder only if you want GPB to also put a copy on your computer, too.
    4. In "Desktop Folders" add any folders where you have photos and videos stored on your computer. Any folders you include here will be automatically backed up to Google Photos photos collection sorted by date taken.
    5. In "Photo size" select either "High Quality" reduced file size for free storage, or choose "Original" full resolution that will count against your storage quota. Please also read: Google Photos "High quality" vs "Original": What's the difference and should you care
    6. Select whether to include RAW and PNG file types in your upload.
    7. Select whether to send anonymous usage statistics to Google.
    8. Click OK.
To change settings later, right or left click on the Google Photos Backup icon (a pinwheel) in your system tray. Click Settings. Ctrl+click the icon to "View failed backups" where you will have the option to "Try again".