Posted by & filed under tips.

If you’re like me, you prefer to have your photo’s organized in folders from the date they were taken. Well, the default photo import tool is limited on options and only allows the importing to one folder. If you prefer the old way of doing things, I found this tip on the Microsoft forums.

“You can get the “old” functionality back by creating a shortcut:

1. right-click desktop, “new shortcut”
2. paste the following in as the location:
%SystemRoot%\system32\rundll32.exe “%SystemDrive%\Program Files\Windows Photo Viewer\photoAcq.dll”,PhotoAndVideoAcquire
3. hit next and type a name – e.g. photo import wizard
4. hit finish”


11 Responses to “Windows 8 Photo Import”

  1. Tim Alberry

    Actually I found this did not work.

    In the end to make it work in the shortcut I had:

    Target: rundll32.exe PhotoAcq.dll,PhotoAndVideoAcquire
    Start in: “C:\Program Files\Windows Photo Viewer”

    Then if I ran the shortcut a window opened showing my device (camera, if attached and powered on) – if I double left mouse clicked on icon of camera – then I got the import wizard (an improved version on Windows 7!).


    • Javier Rivera

      AWESOME!!! I love Windows 8, but didn’t like the “Default” version of importin’ the files… Thank you Dan for showin’ us what you found (Sorry it didn’t work for me either), but in turn, it caused Tim to post the more precise way to pull up the old settings and it worked GREAT!!! Kudos to you BOTH!!!

  2. Holly

    I could not get the shortcut to work either. I don’t understand the Target and Start In option given in the first reply. Please help by giving detailed info what to type where. Thanks! [Ready to cry.]

    • Dan Arsenault

      I’m not sure why this isn’t working for all windows 8 users, maybe it’s different between 64 and 32 bit systems. I will attach my shortcut to the post, it definitely works for me every time, and I’m running Win 8 64bit.

  3. Andrey_Ra

    I have not found any difference in comparison with the standard way, which is produced when you press the right button of the mouse on the icon of the device in Windows Explorer.

    • Dan Arsenault

      Right clicking doesn’t give me an option for opening the import tool, the autoplay automatically goes to the new windows 8 photo app, which doesn’t allow for advanced tagging and organizing options. Maybe there is a way to set up autoplay to work with this way instead, haven’t really tried to figure that out.

  4. Andrew

    Thanks a lot of this fix! It would be great to have it “AutoPlay”. Windows should have ‘Desktop Import’ as a standard option.

  5. NicO

    Yet another waste of time looking to try and do something easy, intuitive and flexible in Windows 7 that is anything but in Windows 8. I despair of how difficult it is to be productive in Windows now as opposed to looking cool cus I have an inferior clone of Android. Windows 7 was so good, how can Windows 8 be so crappy! Having “trained” Windows 7 picture importer to adapt to my preferences for importing – well we compromised – was it too much to hope that Windows 8 could do the same thing?

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