How to stop iPhoto on OS X from opening when you plug in your iPhone or iPad

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I often charge my iPhone through my Mac, and every time I plug it in, I inadvertently open up iPhoto as well. This isn’t a huge deal. It only takes a few seconds for the program to load and to then close out of it. But last night, after hundreds, maybe thousands of times doing this, I’d had enough. I decided to put an end to iPhoto automatically opening whenever I connected my iPhone or iPad to my machine. And it was really easy.

I found a number of ways to do this, but the two best tips came from TekRevue. The first way will stop iPhone from opening up automatically no matter what device you connect to your computer. The second way lets you pick and choose.

Disabling iPhoto for everything

This will disable iPhoto from automatically whether you plug in an iPhone, iPad, digital camera, or any other device your computer views as a camera. Simply open iPhoto, click on the iPhoto menu option in the upper left corner of your screen, select Preferences, and at the bottom of the first menu it pulls up you’ll see an option that says Connecting camera opens. Chances are it’s set to iPhoto, which is why it opens all the time. Just switch it over to No application and you’re good to go. Keep in mind that, while this prevents iPhoto from opening automatically, your connected devices will still show up when you open the program manually.

iPhoto preferences

Disabling iPhoto for certain devices

If you don’t want iPhoto to open when you plug in your iPhone or iPad, but you do want it to open when you plug in your camera, try this: Connect your iPhone or iPad to your computer. Wait for iPhoto to load. Then click over to Finder, open your Applications list, and select Image Capture. When it opens, click the icon in the bottom left corner of the program that looks like a triangle or an eject button. When you do, it will likely be set to iPhoto by default. Instead, choose No application, and iPhoto will no longer load when you plug in this particular device.

Image Capture

Note that you’ll have to do this for each iPhone, iPad and/or camera you own, but it allows you to pick and choose what programs open automatically and for which devices.

I went with the latter option, because usually when I plug in my camera, it’s because I want to load some pictures into iPhoto.

And it’s as easy as that. I plugged in my iPhone this morning, then instinctively grabbed my mouse, ready to force close iPhoto before it even fully opened. But then, when it didn’t open, I breathed a quick sigh of relief and opened it anyway – I had a couple of photos I needed to upload.

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