Photo Stream Troubleshooting

Find the scenario below that best describes your issue and follow the related steps for troubleshooting. Additional troubleshooting steps for Shared Photo Streams can be found in this article.

I imported photos to iPhoto or Aperture from my camera. I do not see them uploaded to the Photo Stream (or My Photo Stream) album even though the service is enabled.

In iPhoto or Aperture, navigate to Preferences > Photo Stream. Ensure that Automatic Upload is enabled under Photo Stream (or My Photo Stream) and that you have an active Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection.

If Automatic Upload is not enabled, you can either enable it and import again, or manually add the newly imported photos to your Photo Stream in iPhoto or Aperture by dragging and dropping them into the Photo Stream (or My Photo Stream) album in your Library.

I don’t see photos in Photo Stream on my iOS device.

Check the following:

  • From your Home screen, tap Settings > iCloud > Photo Stream, and make sure the slider is set to the ON position.
  • From the Home screen, tap Settings > Wi-Fi, make sure the slider is set to ON, and that your device is connected to a wireless network.
  • Ensure that Camera app is closed on the device where you took the photo. Photo Stream will not upload photos from an iOS device until the Camera app is closed.
  • Ensure your iOS device has not fallen below 20% battery power. To preserve battery life, Photo Stream downloading and uploading are disabled when the battery reaches this threshold. Downloading and uploading will resume once you charge your device, and the battery charge is greater than 20%.

I don’t see any photos or shared photo streams in the Photo Stream view of iPhoto or Aperture.

 Check the following:

  • From your Mac, choose System Preferences > iCloud, and make sure the Photo Stream checkbox is enabled.
  • Open iPhoto or Aperture, choose Preferences > Photo Stream.
    • If you are using iPhoto 9.4 or later, or Aperture 3.4 or later, make sure that both the My Photo Stream and Shared Photo Streams checkboxes are selected. If you’d like all new photos that you’ve uploaded to your iPhoto or Aperture library to be uploaded to My Photo Stream, make sure that the Automatic Upload checkbox is selected as well.
    • If you are using iPhoto 9.2.2 through 9.3.2, or Aperture 3.2.3 through 3.3.2, make sure that Enable Photo Stream and Automatic Import are selected.
  • Make sure your Mac has an an active Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection.

I see different photos in Photo Stream on each of my devices.

Your device will keep up to 1000 photos, even if they are older than 30 days. Photos older than 30 days are removed from the iCloud server, so all devices may not have the same photos, depending on when you enabled Photo Stream.

If you’d prefer to have only the most current photos in Photo Stream on each of your devices (and, delete the older photos):

  • Save any photos that are not already in your Camera Roll. Learn more about backing up your Camera Roll.
  • Disable (My) Photo Stream in Settings > iCloud by moving the slider for (My) Photo Stream to OFF. Confirm that you wish to Delete Photos.
  • Next, re-enable Photo Stream by moving the slider to the ON position. iCloud will automatically push your stored photos to your device.
  • Repeat these steps for each device.

I installed or updated to iCloud Control Panel 2.0 or later for Windows and signed in, but when I go to Photo Stream, I see a message that says I’m not signed in.

If you see the message “Photo Stream is not enabled. Sign into iCloud to view Photo Stream,” and you have already signed in, you need to apply your settings.

To apply your settings in Windows 8:

  1. Close the Windows Explorer window that has the message.
  2. Move the pointer to the upper-right corner of the screen to show the Charms bar, click the Search charm, and then click the iCloud Control Panel on the left.
  3. Select Photo Stream, if it’s not already selected.
  4. Next to Photo Stream, click Options. Select My Photo Stream as well as Shared Photo Streams, if you wish to share certain photos. Click OK.
  5. Click Apply.
  6. Return to Photo Stream.

To apply your settings in Windows 7 or Vista (SP2):

  1. Close the Windows Explorer window that has the message.
  2. Click the Windows Start button. Select Control Panel > iCloud. 
  3. Select Photo Stream, if it’s not already selected.
  4. Next to Photo Stream, click Options. Select My Photo Stream as well as Shared Photo Streams, if you wish to share certain photos. Click OK.
  5. Click Apply.
  6. Return to Photo Stream.