My iPhone keeps disconnecting from my Windows PC or Mac when I try to import photos or videos. You may get the error “A device attached to the system is not functioning”.
To stop your iPhone from automatically converting videos to the legacy H.264 format: Configuration > photograph > Transfer to Mac or PC and tapping keep the original.
My iPhone 13 mini was running out of space, but I couldn’t just wipe it down. I had an important video that I needed to save. But every time I connect my iPhone to my Windows PC, it disconnects in the middle of the file transfer.
I double-checked that I installed the Apple USB driver correctly. My his Windows PC had plenty of free space. I tried deleting a few phone apps at random, wondering if my iPhone had died due to low storage. It seemed to help some — but kept choking on a lot of the video, including a 6.9GB clip of him that I needed for an upcoming work project.
What really pissed me off was that when I checked the iPhone free storage on the iPhone itself, it seemed to shrink when I tried to transfer that video!
Why couldn’t I extract these videos to free up space on my phone? My phone didn’t have enough free space.
You see, the iPhone has a hidden setting, by default, It converts all the videos you transfer to your PC to the H.264 format for easier playback, but paradoxically it takes up more space on your phone.. In fact, it takes twice as much space. A 6.9 GB clip on my iPhone is a 15.2 GB clip on my Windows computer.
Thankfully, you can easily tell your iPhone to stop converting videos.It’s just buried under the system menu Configuration > photograph > Transfer to Mac or PC.
Apple’s choice to convert makes some sense if you have enough space on your phone. Windows didn’t natively support HEVC/H.265, the more efficient video formats Apple uses to do cool tricks like real-time HDR, cinematic mode, etc., but H. 264 works almost everywhere. You can also tell your iPhone to record in H.264 from the start. Configuration > camera > formatbut you’d lose that nifty feature.
Playing H.265 content on a Windows PC is not that difficult and probably shouldn’t be done. Even though I haven’t installed Microsoft’s 99 cent HEVC video extension since I last reformatted my PC, my free copy of VLC Media Player plays the original video just fine.
Anyway, I hope this helps with your iPhone storage shortage. No matter how much Apple asks me to make additional changes to iCloud, they won’t push me.