Your Canon PowerShot digital camera came with a USB cable to transfer the photos from the device to your computer. Although your camera came with a CD or DVD containing Canon software, you don't need to install it to transfer the pictures. Windows 8.1 recognizes the camera and installs the appropriate drivers for it in less than a minute. You can then use the Windows Photos app or File Explorer to copy the images to the hard drive.
Turn on the Canon PowerShot camera and put it in Playback mode -- the mode that you use to view images on the screen. PowerShot cameras have a Playback Mode switch on the back, a Playback button, or a Playback mode on the camera dial.
Connect the camera to your computer using the USB cable that came with the device. The USB port is usually located on the left side of the camera and is covered by a rubber flap. Windows detects the PowerShot and installs the correct drivers.
Click the "Tap to choose what happens with this device" announcement in the upper right corner of the screen and then select "Import Photos and Videos" to launch the Windows Photos app. Windows remembers your action, so it automatically launches the Photos app the next time you connect the camera.
Deselect images you don't want to download to your computer by clicking them; all images are selected by default. Images are separated based on the date that they were taken. To deselect all images, click the "Clear Selection" button.
Type a name for the destination folder into the "Files will be imported to this folder" field. The folder is created in the Pictures folder on your hard drive. Click "Import" to start transferring the images from the camera to the folder.
Click the "Open folder" button to open the folder in the Photos app. Make sure all your images are in the folder, especially if you plan to delete them from the camera.
Avoid plugging the USB cable into a USB hub when connecting the PowerShot to the computer; use one of the USB ports on the back of the computer.
If the "Tap to choose what happens with this device" announcement does not display or the Windows Photos app doesn't open, use File Explorer to transfer the images.
Windows displays the PowerShot camera as a drive in File Explorer after it installs the necessary drivers. Open the drive -- usually labeled "Canon PowerShot..." -- and select the pictures. Press "Ctrl-C" to copy them to the clipboard, open the destination folder and press "Ctrl-V" to transfer them from the clipboard to the folder. To select everything in the folder, press "Ctrl-A." To select several images, hold "Ctrl" and click each item.
If Windows does not detect your camera, install the Canon camera software and drivers from the CD or DVD that came with the device.
You can transfer the photos to a computer using a card reader. Remove the memory card from the camera, plug it into the card reader, connect the card reader to the PC and then use the File Explorer to transfer the images to the hard drive.
If you delete the images from the camera and later realize some are missing from the Pictures library on your computer, you may be unable to recover them.