iCloud for Windows 11: How to Download & Install (2023)

by Matthew Adams

iCloud for Windows 11: How to Download & Install (1)

Matthew Adams

Windows & Software Expert

Matthew is a freelancer who has produced a variety of articles on various topics related to technology. His main focus is the Windows OS and all the things... read more

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  • The Windows 11 iCloud app enables users to sync photos, videos, music, and documents on PCs and iPhones for easy file transfer between devices.
  • This iCloud for Windows 11 UWP app adds an iCloud Drive storage folder to File Explorer that you can drag and drop files into.
  • With iCloud Photos enabled, photos and videos taken on your iPhone will also be instantly accessible on the computer.

iCloud for Windows 11: How to Download & Install (2)


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iPhone is one world’s foremost smartphone series that has revolutionized mobile computing in more ways than one. Aside from communication, users utilize Apple mobiles to capture photos and videos. Those files are saved on their iCloud storage.

There are two ways you can transfer photos, videos, music, and other files between your mobile and the PC. One way is to connect the iPhone to a PC with a USB cable. Then you can transfer files with iTunes or alternative software.

Alternatively, you can transfer files between your iPhone and the computer with iCloud cloud storage. That method eliminates the need for USB cables as you don’t need to connect devices. Instead, files are saved in your cloud storage, which you can then access on PC with the iCloud Windows app.

The second method is a much more convenient one. You can sync the files on your iPhone with a Windows 11 PC thanks to the iCloud app. Then you’ll be able to access iCloud folders in File Explorer as outlined below.

What is cloud storage used for?

Cloud storage is quite simply a service that enables users to save (upload) files within an online account. You can download files from your cloud storage accounts onto devices. Apple iCloud is the default cloud storage service for iPhones and iPads.

Many cloud storage services offer a few gigabytes of free storage space. You can pay subscriptions to expand the amount of storage space you have.

You can utilize cloud storage in both browsers and with downloadable apps. The iCloud for Windows app is one you can install on desktops and laptops. That app is freely available and enables file synchronization between Windows PCs and iOS mobile devices.

What do I need to sync my iPhone files with Windows 11?

To utilize the iCloud app in Windows 11, you’ll need an Apple ID. The vast majority of iPhone users will no doubt have an Apple ID account for downloading apps. The iCloud cloud storage is a part of your Apple account.

You’ll also need a Microsoft account for Windows 11. That account is required for downloading and installing the iCloud for Windows app. You can set one up on the Microsoft account website.

Aside from that, you’ll need devices that meet the minimum system requirements for iCloud. Apple’s System requirements for iCloud page provides full details for the recommended and minimum system requirements.

How can I sync iPhone files with Windows 11 PC?

1. Download and install iCloud for Windows 11

  1. First, sign in to your Microsoft account via the MS account site if you’re not already.
  2. Press the Start menu’s taskbar button in Windows 11.
  3. Click the Microsoft Store app on the Start menu.
  4. Type iCloud for Windows in the MS Store app’s search box.
  5. Select the iCloud app in the search results.
  6. Click the Get button for the iCloud for Windows app to download and install it.

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If you’ve tried to apply the above steps and you received anUpgrade to iClouderror, check out this guide on what to do if iCloud won’t install on Windows 10. Although the guide is for Windows 10, it would assist you when applying the steps in Windows 11 too.

2. Set up iCloud File Explorer syncing in Windows 11

iCloud for Windows 11: How to Download & Install (5)

You must be signed in to the same Apple ID account on the iPhone you want to sync with Windows 11.

  1. Click the magnifying glass for Windows 11’s search tool to bring up that utility.
  2. Enter iCloud in the search box to find your newly installed app.
  3. Click iCloud to the launch that app.
  4. When you first open iCloud, you’ll see a login window. Type your Apple ID login details within the two text boxes.
  5. Press the Sign in button.
  6. Select either the Don’t send or Automatically send option according to preference on the Send diagnostic prompt that opens.
  7. Thereafter, select the iCloud Drive and Photos checkboxes if they’re not already checked.
  8. Click the Options button for Photos.
  9. For file syncing purposes, it’s best to select the iCloud Photos and Shared Albums options.
  10. Click the Done button on the Photos Options window.
  11. Then click the Apply option on the iCloud window.

3. Move your PC’s files to iCloud Drive and Photos

  1. Open File Explorer by clicking the folder button on the taskbar.
  2. Next, open a document, video, or photos folder in File Explorer.
  3. Left-click a file to move into your iCloud Drive and hold the left mouse button.
  4. Then drag that file onto iCloud Drive on the left side of File Explorer.
  5. Release the left mouse button when the Move to iCloud Drive cursor tooltip is visible. Then the file will be included in iCloud Drive.
  6. If you want to transfer images and videos saved on your PC to your mobile, it’s better to drag-and-drop pictures into iCloud Photos on File Explorer’s sidebar. You’ll be able to see the images moved into iCloud Photos on your iPhone’s Photos app.

iCloud for Windows 11: How to Download & Install (12)

You’ll need to have iCloud Photos enabled on your iPhone to sync photographs and video. To do so, tap iCloud, then Photos in Settings. Finally, turn on the iCloud Photos setting.

Can’t I just utilize the iCloud web app instead?

Sure, you can sign in to the iCloud web app on both Windows and mobile browsers. However, you won’t get the neat iCloud File Explorer file syncing by utilizing the web app.

You’ll have to manually download and upload files on your PC and iPhone to transfer files with your cloud storage.

What are the alternative cloud storage apps for Apple iOS devices?

Google Drive, DropBox, DropBox, and OneDrive are three of the most notable cloud storage alternatives to Apple’s iCloud.

All of those services have downloadable apps for both Windows and iOS mobiles. You can also sync files between iPhones and Windows PCs with those cloud storage apps.

However, it’s best to utilize the free cloud storage space available for your iPhone’s iCloud storage first, which amounts to 5 GB. When you run out of iCloud space, consider adding Google Drive to your iPhone. The Google Drive cloud storage offers 15 GB of free space.

The iCloud for Windows app is invaluable for linking Apple mobile devices with Windows 11 PCs. With that app installed, iCloud will become more like an extension of your PC’s hard drive with which you can seamlessly transfer files between Windows 11 PCs and iOS phones.

Installing iCloud for Windows will also make it much easier to access photos captured with your iPhone’s camera on a PC. Snapshots taken with an iPhone will become automatically available within the iCloud Photos folder in File Explorer.

So, the advantages of utilizing the iCloud for Windows app are obvious enough. It’s a great app for syncing iPhones with Windows 11 computers.

If you experience problems, check out this guide when iCloud drive is not syncing on Windows 10. The tips listed there may be easily applied on this OS as well. The same recommendation extends to this article on how to fix iCloud in Windows 10 if it’s not working.

Don’t forget to tell us about your experience with the iCloud client on Windows 11 in the comments section below.

This article covers:Topics:

  • icloud
  • Windows 11

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    iCloud for Windows 11: How to Download & Install (13)



    How do I complete an iCloud download? ›

    On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch
    1. On iCloud.com, tap Photos.
    2. Tap Select, then tap a photo or video. To select multiple photos or videos, tap more than one. To select your entire library, tap Select All.
    3. Tap the more button .
    4. Choose Download, then tap Download to confirm.
    Jan 20, 2022

    How do I download from iCloud to Windows 11? ›

    Enter your Apple ID and Password to log in to your iCloud account.
    1. Once logged in, click on the files you want to transfer to the PC, i.e., "Photos."
    2. Click on the first photo once the Photos tab opens.
    3. You'll then need to select all the files (photos) you want to download. ...
    4. Transfer Files from iCloud to PC by Program.
    Feb 22, 2023

    How do I download all data from iCloud to my computer? ›

    Open iCloud Drive. Find and select the file. Click Download at the top of the page or double-click the file. The document downloads to your default downloads location.

    Does iCloud work well on Windows 11? ›

    Microsoft has now made available a feature for Windows 11 that will make it easy to connect your iCloud to your Photos app on your PC.

    Can you download from iCloud to a Windows computer? ›

    With iCloud for Windows, you can view, download and upload photos and videos stored in iCloud from a Windows computer.

    Why won't iCloud work on Windows 11? ›

    To fix can't install iCloud for Windows 10/11, you can first try to update your computer to the latest version to make sure that it meet the system requirements of iCloud for Windows. You can click Start > Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update > Check for updates to update your system.

    Why can't i download iCloud files on Windows? ›

    When you find that iCloud does not work properly on Windows PC, then you should consider the following solutions.
    1. Fix 1. Enable iCloud Drive.
    2. Fix 2. Sign in to iCloud Again.
    3. Fix 3. View iCloud Status.
    4. Fix 4. Force Restart iCloud.
    5. Fix 5. Update iCloud App.
    6. Fix 6. Check the Network.
    7. Fix 7. Update Windows PC.
    8. Fix 8.
    Feb 1, 2023

    Is iCloud for Windows different from iCloud? ›

    iCloud for Windows uses the same tech Microsoft relies on for OneDrive's Files On-Demand feature. That means items stored in iCloud Drive will appear in Windows File Explorer, just as if they were on your PC.

    Is iCloud the same as iCloud for Windows? ›

    After you set up iCloud on an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac, you can use iCloud for Windows to access your photos, videos, calendar, files, and other important information on your Windows PC.

    How do I download thousands of Pictures from iCloud? ›

    Download the iCloud for Windows tool and install it onto your computer. Open iCloud for Windows from the Start menu. Tap on Options and select everything you need. Click on Done to download iCloud photos.

    How do I use iCloud on my Windows desktop? ›

    Set up and use iCloud for Windows
    1. Check that you meet the minimum system requirements. Make sure that you're using the latest version of Windows on your PC, and the latest version of iOS, iPadOS, or macOS on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac. ...
    2. Download iCloud for Windows. ...
    3. Set up and use iCloud for Windows.
    May 26, 2022

    Why does iCloud keep asking for password Windows 11? ›

    If you open your iCloud by just double-clicking its icon, it may pop up over and over again asking for password verification for iCloud for Windows 11 does not have admin rights. If you are in this situation, you can easily prevent receiving such notifications by simply opening iCloud as an administrator.

    How do I get my iCloud email on Windows 11? ›

    1. Open Mail, and select Add Account.
    2. Select iCloud.
    3. Enter your Apple ID email address, your Name, and your Apple ID password, then select Sign in.
    4. Your account is now setup, select Done.

    Why won't iCloud Drive let me download? ›

    For the phone, try Settings/Your Name/iCloud and slide off iCloud Drive syncing. Wait a few minutes and then slide syncing on. Allow time for syncing to occur. You can try logging out of iCloud, restarting, and then signing back in.

    Why can't I download documents from iCloud? ›

    What's Preventing You From Downloading iCloud Files on iPhone or iPad? A poor internet connection is usually the main reason why iCloud files often fail to download on iPhones and iPads. If you are dealing with large files, make sure you have a strong and stable cellular/ Wi-Fi connection.

    Why doesn t iCloud for Windows work? ›

    Your current account may be stuck accidentally and then the “iCloud drive not syncing on Windows 10” will occur. In this case, you can sign out of your iCloud account and log in again. Step 1: Launch your iCloud on your computer in the system tray icons. Step 2: Press the Sign out tab and then sign in to iCloud again.

    What is the point of iCloud for Windows? ›

    After you set up iCloud on an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac, you can use iCloud for Windows to access your photos, videos, calendars, files, passwords, and other important information on your Windows PC.

    Why install iCloud in Windows? ›

    With iCloud for Windows, you can access your photos, videos, mail, calendar, files, and other important information on your Windows PC. Learn about all the different features you can use with iCloud for Windows. Some features require the latest version of Windows 10 or later.

    How do I force iCloud to sync Windows 11? ›

    Step 1: Right-click on the Windows key and select Task Manager. Step 2: Select iCloud under the Apps menu. Click on the End task button at the bottom. Open the iCloud app again, and it should start syncing data on Windows 11 PC.

    Can I use iCloud for Windows without an Apple ID? ›

    Once iCloud has been set up on your Windows PC, you will be able to also access the other features of your iCloud account that you used to use only from your Apple devices. In order to start using iCloud for Windows, you only need an Apple ID.

    How do I download all my Photos from iCloud to my hard drive? ›

    On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, tap Settings > [your name] > iCloud > Photos. Then select Download and Keep Originals and import the photos to your computer. On your Mac, open the Photos app. Select the photos and videos you want to copy.

    How do I download all my Photos from iCloud to my computer? ›

    Android: Which Is Best For You?
    How Do I Download My Photos From iCloud?
    1. In your web browser, go to iCloud and sign in using your Apple ID and password.
    2. Select Photos.
    3. Search or browse your photo library and albums, then select all of the photos you want to download.
    4. In the upper-right corner, select the Download icon.
    Mar 4, 2022

    Where are iCloud Photos stored on Windows 11? ›

    Open Windows 11's default Photos app. From this point, I was able to see iCloud pictures in the app, since iCloud for Windows places the photos under the Photos folder in File Explorer.

    How do I complete iCloud downloads on my new iPhone? ›

    How to transfer your iCloud backup to your new device
    1. Turn on your new device. ...
    2. Follow the steps until you see the Wi-Fi screen.
    3. Tap a Wi-Fi network to join. ...
    4. Sign in to iCloud with your Apple ID and password.
    5. When asked, choose a backup.
    Sep 24, 2021

    How do I download my Messages from iCloud? ›

    If Messages in iCloud has been enabled on old iPhone, then you can turn on the sync option on new iPhone to download messages from iCloud to new iPhone. Sign in to iCloud on your new iPhone with the Apple ID on old iPhone. Go to your iCloud account (Settings > your name) > Tap iCloud > Turn on Messages.

    How do I continue photos downloaded from iCloud? ›

    On your Mac or PC
    1. On iCloud.com, click Photos and select a photo or video. Hold the command key on your Mac or control key on your PC to select multiple photos or videos.
    2. Click and hold the download button in the upper corner of the window. ...
    3. Click Download.
    Jan 20, 2022

    Why can't I download from iCloud? ›

    Sign out of iCloud and sign in again

    Go ahead and sign out of your iCloud account/Apple ID on the iPhone or iPad where you're having this problem. After signing out, restart your iPhone and sign in again. Once that's done, your iCloud files should download without problems.

    How to transfer Data from iPhone to PC? ›

    First, connect your iPhone to a PC with a USB cable that can transfer files.
    1. Turn your phone on and unlock it. Your PC can't find the device if the device is locked.
    2. On your PC, select the Start button and then select Photos to open the Photos app.
    3. Select Import > From a USB device, then follow the instructions.

    How do I Download and delete files from iCloud? ›

    How to delete data from iCloud
    1. Go to iCloud and sign in with your Apple ID. Open your iCloud Drive.
    2. Choose the files you want to remove and click the Delete icon in the iCloud Drive toolbar.
    Jan 11, 2023

    How do I transfer Data from iCloud? ›

    Go to Settings. Tap Get content from another phone or System > Get content from another phone. Tap iPhone > Import from iCloud backup. Follow the steps shown onscreen to back up your iPhone content to your iCloud storage.


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