Disable Photos Auto-Launch

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Today’s Question: I use Lightroom on a Macintosh, which means I also have the Apple Photos app, which I don’t use. Do you know of a way to stop the Photos app from launching every time I connect a camera or insert a card in a card reader?

Tim’s Quick Answer: The solution here is to turn off the “Open Photos for this device” checkbox on the Import tab in Photos. The catch is that you’ll need to do this for every photo device you might connect to the computer. The alternative is to remove the Photos application altogether.

More Detail: You may have been simply closing the Photos application each time it launches, meaning you may have never actually gotten into the “full” application. So, next time you connect a camera or other device with photos, go ahead and click the “Get Started” button to enter the full application. Then, in the Import tab you’ll see your device listed on the toolbar, with a checkbox for “Open Photos for this device”. Turn off that checkbox, and Photos will no longer launch when you connect that specific device.

Again, as noted above, you’ll need to repeat this step for every photo device (cameras, smartphones, card readers, etc.) that you connect to your computer. But once you’ve turned off the “Open Photos for this device” checkbox for all devices the Photos application won’t launch when you connect those devices to your computer.

And, of course, if you’re not going to use the Photos application at all, you could uninstall it from your computer. Of course, chances are a future operating system update will cause Photos to be installed yet again.