Need help backing up my past wife's iphone


Limp Gawd
Jan 12, 2011
Everything iphone is for some reason ridiculously complicated... Well at least to me... There is a good chance I'm making this more complicated than it even is but anyway My wife recently passed away and I want to send all her pictures that were on her phone as well as the pictures of her on my phone to family members and friends that would like them... In total there is almost 50gb of pictures band videos.

I loaded everything onto google drive from both our phones and my first plan was to share that google photos drive email that I created and that I am also paying for the extra storage (I think it's like $2 a month which is nothing) but I'm terrified that someone is going to sign in and there phone without them even knowing is going to start backing up and then I will have someone else's photos to have to sort through... So my new plan is to just buy thumb drives since 64gb drives are cheap and send them to whoever wants them out of the friends and family.

The photos on my s20 are simple to offload and they stay in the folders I created... I have them saved on my pc just the way I want them...

On her phone she has a few picture folders but when I plug her phone into my pc those folders are not visible the way she had them... There are folders showing but everything seems to be random... Is this something I just have to deal with using windows? Is there any better way to get her pictures on my pc and onto some thumb drives? I have even tried playing some of the videos but not all of them even want to load but I'm chamlking that up to the media player


Fully [H]
Feb 1, 2005
First, sorry for your loss...

I think I would go through and create different albums in Google photos and then share the individual albums with the various intended audiences. It should allow you to create an album that you can share individually by creating a link to the album without sharing your e-mail address, etc.

To make it easier, you could probably create one large album with all the pictures and share them all using the same album sharing. You can restrict whether or not people can add photos to the albums.

The photos would still be filed under your Google account and essentially others can just view them.


[H]F Junkie
Aug 16, 2004
Yeah... in Google drive, you just right click and tell it to give you a sharable link.

Then whoever you share that link with can download the files/whatever but they won't have write access unless you specifically tell it to give them write access.

NEVER EVER EVER EVER share the login to your email. And if you don't have it already, enable two factor authentication for your email and any other important online accounts you have. If a bad actor gets into one of your important accounts, you are screwed.

As far as backing up all the media on the phone, you can just install iTunes on your computer and then browse the internal storage and copy everything to your computer that you want to save.

You can also use other software such as SynciOS that will automatically find everything and then let you select what to save and then copy it to the selected folder you tell it to save to.


Supreme [H]ardness
Aug 7, 2004
You'd have to download a third-party application for Windows that will read the database file for the iOS photos, and properly import them to your computer in the correct directory structure. Otherwise, all you'll get, as you said, is just all the photos without any real organization.

That or just pay for iCloud storage for the photos, and it will retain everything. If you've got multiple mac products already, this may be worth it. I'd trust that storage a bit more over Google Photos/storage. You can share to anyone (Even non-icloud users) off of iCloud storage as well.