With so much digital gadgetry at our fingertips, we’re snapping more pictures than ever- but what happens when the memory card’s full?

The traditional photo album has become an endangered species. Now that we’re taking pictures digitally on smartphones and tablets as well as digital cameras, our precious memories can languish in the system. But not if you follow our guide…

Description: Look after your photos: Take steps to safeguard them now

Look after your photos: Take steps to safeguard them now

Storing photos

Memory full? It’s time to transfer your images

Absolute beginners

To move photos off your camera, phone or tablet on to your computer, attach it to the PC/Mac’s USB port using the connecting cable. The computer will ask if you want to transfer the images. Store them in you’re my PICTURES/PHOTOS folder.

Description: To move photos off your camera, phone or tablet on to your computer, attach it to the PC/Mac’s USB port using the connecting cable

To move photos off your camera, phone or tablet on to your computer, attach it to the PC/Mac’s USB port using the connecting cable

Back up

Got an iPhone, iPod or iPad*? Transfer photos to your computer wirelessly with iCloud…


Newer Macs come with the iCloud app, but if you have a Windows 7 PC, install iCloud for PCs, then switch on the iCloud Backup on your device.

Find a photo

Locate picture fast

Darn it!

Searching for a photo without success? Attach some memorable tags (descriptive keywords) to it.

Easy access

Got a PC? Select a photo and press ADD A TAG in the details section at the bottom. Type in your keywords (eg, Uncle Fred; Xmas 2011), separated by semicolons, and save. To find photos, select START and enter a keyword in the search box.

Free download

If your PC uses Windows XP, download Windows Live Photo Gallery to add tags to images. (Note: photos are only searchable within this software)

Go Apple!

To add tags on a Mac: open iPhoto; select KEYWORDS from the VIEW menu; click beneath the image and type in a tag (press RETURN after each tag). To find, type your keywords into the search box.

Description: Magic moments: capture now – keep for ever!

Magic moments: capture now – keep for ever!

Ways to share

Email, online… the choice is yours!

Handset ready?

Share photos from your smartphone using MMS, email or Bluetooth.

In with the in-crowd

From a Mac, share photos by right-clicking on the image and selecting NEW EMAIL WITH ATTACHMENT. Use the menu in the bottom right-hand corner of the email window to select the right size.

Just close friends

Set up a Twitter account and download the apps to share pictures from your handset with followers.

Keep it simple

From your PC, right-click a photo and select EMAIL PICTURE. Windows will re-size the image.

Loads to show?

If you have lots to share, try free photo-sharing services. You can upload, edit and share up to 1GB of digital photos with Picasa software.

More copies?

Use online services to print photos – and even make photobooks. Prints start at 9p each at Snapfish.

Keep the, safe

For your peace of mind

Not a disaster

Phones and laptops can get lost or stolen, hard drives can crash… Back up, and you won’t have to worry.


Copy you’re my photos folder to DVDs. Right-click, then select send to the DVD RW drive. A DVD holds around 15,000 good-quality pictures.

Description: Copy you’re my photos folder to DVDs

Copy you’re my photos folder to DVDs

Precious memories

Store DVDs in plastic cases away from sunlight and extreme temperatures, and they should last for 50 years**.

Quick as you like

Print digital photos straightaway with a compact photo printer. Simply plug it in, insert a memory card or USB stick, edit images on the printer’s display and print.

Rated by us

Buying a compact photo printer? Our testers rate the Canon Selphy 8100 ($150, 020 8588 8000; canon.co.uk). A $21 ink-and-paper pack will produce around 36 photos.

Speedy scanning

Making digital copies of old photos can be time-consuming. Scan several at a time, leaving a small gap between the edge of the pictures for easier cropping.


Back up images on an external hard drive (from around $75 for 320GB). Connect to your computer via the USB port and copy pictures across. Then keep it somewhere safe!

Up in the air

Copy photos to an online back-up service and access them at any time from any machine. Microsoft’s SkyDrive offers enough space for 60,000 photos for free.

Description: http://www.theinquirer.net/IMG/281/212281/microsoft-skydrive-metro-app-for-windows-8-540x334.png?1329839839

Microsoft’s SkyDrive

Vip (very impressive printer)

Buying a new printer/copier/scanner? The GHI rates the HP Photosmart 5510 (0845 605 6013; hp.co.uk) for good, all-round results.

Who do you think you are?

Tracking your ancestors? Scan old photos into your computer using a printer/scanner to make digital copies – and save them as JPEGs in the MY PICTURES folder.

Xpect the unexpected

When scanning photos into the computer, use printer software to adjust the resolution to 300dpi (dots per inch) – just in case originals get damaged.

Years and years

Print snaps on to good-quality photo paper and they should last up to 100 years in an album, or 30 years kept under glass***.

Zero tolerance

Don’t keep photos you won’t look at again – headless people, blurry landscapes, etc. be selective!

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