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About Google Photos & Google Drive

Google Drive, launched on April 24, 2012, is one of the most famous and powerful Cloud services that are widely used worldwide. Google Drive offers great convenience for users to store files on their servers, synchronize files across devices, and share files through the network. In addition to a website, Google Drive has apps on all popular platforms including Windows and macOS computers, and Android and iOS smartphones and tablets. It offers users 15 GB of free storage and upgrade options with charging a monthly fee.

Google Drive and Google Photos
Google Drive and Google Photos

Google Photos, released in May 2015, later than Google Drive, is a photo sharing and storage service developed by Google. It also has its own website to access, and app on all the popular platforms. The great thing is that Google Photos gives users free, unlimited storage space for photos up to 16 million pixels and videos up to 1080p resolution. Users also have the option to store at higher resolutions, but the storage will counts against their Google Drive quota.

However, Google announced on November 12, 2020 that it would no longer offer unlimited free photo storage and anyone wishing to store more than that will have to pay for one of the company's storage plans. But luckily, photos uploaded before June 2021 will not be counted towards the user limit when the change occurs.

Why Sync Google Photos to Google Drive?

As mentioned above, Google Drive and Google Photos are still different. Even though Google Drive does display photos on devices in each respective folders, you cannot move pictures between these folders. However, Google Drive supports hierarchy and you are allowed to copy pictures, images and videos between folders inside Google Drive.

Besides, if you have installed Google Drive on your device, you can scan documents, files, or photos directly. While using Google Photos, you have to download PhotoScan app from Google so that you can scan your photos. In addition to the above reasons, the following differences between Google Drive and Google Photos also lead users to choose to transfer files between the two cloud drives.

  • Google Drive supports more file types: Google Photos is a photo library application that only supports storing and managing pictures and videos. However, Google Drive supports file (including photos, videos, ZIP to PDF) storage, management, and backup.
  • User interface: The user interface of Google Photos is like another photo library, and for Google Drive, it is like a typical cloud file manager or backup service.
  • Management: Google Photos provides the same media content management as on your device, and you cannot move or copy content between folders. However, Google Drive provides a good management method. You can manage various folders flexibly, such as creating, moving, and deleting. Therefore, you can better manage various data on Google Drive.

Considering the above reasons, many people tend to sync photos from Google Photos to Google Drive to store these photos.

How to Move Photos from Google Photos to Google Drive? [3 Methods]

Here, we round up 3 methods below to help sync or add Google Photos to Google Drive.

Method 1. Download and Upload

This might be the first idea that comes to most users' mind: first download all target photos from Google Photos onto your local storage device and then re-upload them to Google Drive. Before that, please ensure your local device has enough space for transit purpose, especially when it is a mobile device.

1. Sign in your Google Photos and download all photos to local device.

Download Photos from Google Photos
Download Photos from Google Photos

2. Then upload these photos from local computer to Google Drive.

Upload Files to Google Drive
Upload Files to Google Drive

This way will take much time if there are a lot of pictures and videos to migrate. 

Method 2. Show your Google Photos in Google Drive

Is it possible to get quick access to Google Photos for Google Drive users? With a simple setting, you won't have to constantly be heading over to photos.google.com to work with images on your Google cloud. From Google Drive, you can view, download, delete, share, tag, and rename your photos.

Step 1. Open your computer, go to drive.google.com.
Step 2. Click "Settings".
Step 3. Next to "Create a Google Photos folder," turn on “Automatically put your Google Photos into a folder in My Drive”.

Put Google Photos into a folder in My Drive
Put Google Photos into a folder in My Drive
This method is great, but it is not available from July 10, 2019 when Google Photos and Google Drive did not no longer automatically sync. So now you might find this "Create a Google Photos folder" does not exist anymore.

Method 3. Sync Google Photos to Google Drive with MultCloud

To get rid of the inconvenience of the above two methods, we recommend a third party cloud to cloud sync tool – MultCloud. Not only for Google Drive and Google Photos , it supports almost all popular cloud storage service, such as OneDrive, Dropbox, G Suite, Google Drive, SharePoint, Wasabi, Flickr, FTP, etc. It allows you to directly transfer or add Google photos to Google Drive without downloading and uploading.

  • 10 Sync Modes: one way / two way sync, real time sync, etc.
  • Schedule Sync: set a specific time to start cloud sync automatically.
  • Offline: sync cloud data without going through local storage device.
  • Fast: up to 10 threads for cloud data transfer.

Step 1. Create a MultCloud account. it’s FREE of charge.
Step 2. Add Google Drive accounts. In its main console, click “Add Cloud” on the left and select “Google Drive” from the right cloud drive list. Then, just follow the easy guidance to finish cloud account adding.

Add Google Drive
Add Google Drive

Step 3. Drag the scroll bar at the side of windows, and select Google Photos to add to MultCloud.

Add Google Photos
Add Google Photos

Note: You can add all your Cloud service accounts to connect and manage files between multiple cloud storage accounts if needed.

Step 4. Now you can see files in both Google Drive and Google Photos are displayed on MultCloud’s interface. Click on the tab – Cloud Sync and select the folder in Google Photos as source folder and a folder in Google Drive as the target folder.

Sync Google Photos
Sync Google Photos

Step 5. Click on Sync Now to perform the task, after the task is complete, you can explore all photos in the Google Drive folder. What’s more, once you settled a sync task, you can also commit it or re-edit, delete, view logs, etc. from Task List.

Task List
Task List


  • If you want to add entire Google Photos to Google Drive, you could select Google Photos as the source while creating the sync task.
  • You can click on "Options" to select the way cloud syncing: Real Time Sync, One-Way Sync or Two-Way Sync. And there are seven more detailed sync methods in One-Way Sync.
    Cloud Sync Options
    Cloud Sync Options
  • If there are a lot of photos that need to sync, you can close the page as long as the task starts because MultCloud can run the task in the background.
  • To move photos from Google Photos to Google Drive, you can also use the "Cloud Transfer" function.
  • If you have tens of terabytes of data that needs to be moved quickly, you can upgrade your MultCloud account to a premium account, so that MultCloud will use the VIP server to migrate your data through 10 threads instead of just 2.


As you can see, any way above can help sync Google Photos to Google Drive but MultCloud is a more direct way, which saves a lot of energy and time. What’s more, MultCloud offers similar features that cloud drive itself has like "Upload", "Download", "Delete", "Rename", etc so that you can do operations without logging in your cloud drive. In addition to "Cloud Sync" feature, MultCloud also has "Remote Upload" , "Cloud Backup"and "Cloud Transfer" functions.

For the “Remote Upload” function, users can upload files to different cloud drives by parsing torrent files, such as download torrents to Dropbox. For "Cloud Transfer", it can help transfer files across cloud drives directly without downloading and uploading. If you want to transfer Dropbox to Google Photos, that's really worth to have a try.

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