Getting Started with Mylio – Adding an External Hard Drive

How To  /  Productivity
Scroll this

This guide explains how to set up Mylio to store your original photos on an external hard drive. Your other devices will also get a complete version of your photo library. You can then choose whether to sync originals or optimized versions of your photos to those devices.

Getting started with Mylio and an External Hard Drive 20 minutes

Step 1: Download Mylio on your computer

Download Mylio

  1. Visit on your computer 
  2. Install Mylio for free (on a Mac, drag the Mylio icon into the Applications folder)
  3. Sign in with your email and a password
  4. Verify your email
  5. Begin the setup wizard
  6. Select Skip when asked to add your photos (you will add photos in Steps 3 and 4)
  7. Select Complete Setup

Step 2: Add your external hard drive as a Vault

A Vault is Mylio’s term for a device that stores all your original photos. An external hard drive Vault protects your originals and syncs changes with the rest of your Mylio library whenever you plug it in and run Mylio on that computer.

Getting started with an external hard drive Vault

  1. Plug the external hard drive into your computer 
  2. Open the Dashboard in the top right corner of Mylio
  3. Select [ Add ] at the top of the Devices column 
  4. Select [ External Drive ]
  5. Choose your external hard drive

Step 3: Download Mylio on your phone

Getting started with Mylio on iPhone

Downloading Mylio on your phone automatically adds the photos and videos you take on your phone to your Mylio library. Mylio also syncs an optimized version of your library to your phone so you can manage all your photos wherever you go. You can also Free Up Space on your phone by having Mylio remove originals from your phone when they are already stored on a Vault.

  1. Visit the App Store/Play Store on your phone
  2. Install Mylio for free
  3. Sign in with the same credentials you used on your computer
  4. Complete the setup wizard to add media from your Camera Roll/Media Library

*Note: For Mylio to sync your phone, Mylio needs to be open in the foreground of your phone, as well as open on another device on the same wifi network.

Step 4: Consolidate your photos

There are two primary ways to import your photos into Mylio.

Option 1: Import with Copy 

When you import with copy, Mylio will duplicate a folder and its contents into the Mylio Pictures folder. This is a great way to add photos from online services like Facebook, Flickr, and Google Photos, as well as Apple Photos, and your camera/sd card.

Mylio's Copy Import

  1. Select the import button
  2. Select Copy
  3. Locate and select the folder(s) you want to add
  4. Select Continue

Option 2: Import with Source Folders 

When you choose to import with Source Folders, Mylio will keep your photos in the current location – meaning they are not being duplicated or moved. Because Mylio is referencing your folders and their contents in their current location, any change made in Mylio will be on your original files.

Settings menu

  1. Open the View menu (three dots in the upper right)
  2. Select Settings
  3. Select Source Folders
  4. Choose Add more folders
  5. Select the folder(s) you want to add
  6. Select Apply

Step 5: Personalize your collection

With all your photos in one library, getting started with the organization and personalization of your library is efficient. Mylio lets you customize your library with flexible tools and views that let you sort and search for your photos any way you want.

Getting started with Mylio's organizational tools

  1. Create folders and albums
  2. Add linked calendars and events
  3. Tag people with face recognition
  4. Apply dates, geotags, captions, ratings, categories, and more
  5. Find photos fast with views, search, and filter
  6. Edit with presets, Mylio’s editing suite, or a third-party editor

More Getting Started Tips

To find out more, visit the Mylio Support Site.

Here to Help

Getting started is easy with our friendly Support staff. Send us a message at

Join the Conversation

Sign up for the Mylio User Community Forum at