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How to delete all photos and videos from your camera roll on Windows Phone

One way of freeing up space on your Windows Phone device is by deleting photos and videos stored in your camera roll. Want a quick way to delete those files? We’ll show you how. Head past the break to watch the steps on video.

If you have Windows Phone 8.1:

  1. Go to photos
  2. Swipe left for albums
  3. Press and hold on camera roll
  4. Click ‘delete contents.’
  5. Click ‘delete’ again if you’re sure you want to do this.

If you have Windows Phone 8.0:

  1. Go to photos
  2. Click on albums
  3. Press and hold on camera roll
  4. Click ‘delete contents.’
  5. Click ‘delete’ again if you’re sure you want to do this.

That’s it! If you need to free up more space, you may also want to check out our guide on how to move or uninstall multiple apps with Storage Sense on Windows Phone 8.1. It’s also a good idea to back up your Windows Phone pictures and videos with OneDrive, so they won’t be gone for good.

Further reading:

Mark Guim is Video Editor at Windows Central. He switched to Windows because the MacBook Pro isn't Pro enough. You can follow him on Twitter at @markguim.

85 Comments
  • Why? Where are all the real news? It's not even Friday yet! :(
  • This is real news. Free up storage I love it. 10GB left on my fully loaded NL 925.
  • Doesn't help when you got alot of games on the L925
  • Move them to the SD Card then!
  • L925 doesnt support SD Card :D
  • Upss! You're right! Sorry!
  • Agreed, this article doesn't need to exist
  • Excuse me your highness but WP serves all levels of mankind. Not only I genius. Lol
  • You don't need to be a genius to know this. Right click (hold) and delete exists since any mobile version of Windows ever existed.
  • Haha. I know that but to many genius on these forums think that all mankind is computer savvy. Lol
  • But it is not consistent from app to app. While Music is a different breast, your logic is geniuses should be able to delete whole artists or even albums. Also, music informs you your music will be deleted from your cloud collection as well. Knowing this won't happen if photos are backed up to One Drive is helpful. Finally, the article is fine. It is inane comments about the relative value of an article that are really annoying, mine included ; )
  • Sorry for nit picking but I think you need to edit the sixth word in the second line.
  • Really?  Who doesn't like breasts?   
  • I love reading comments on WPC!
  • This is a good tutorial article for those who aren't tech savvy. I find these convenient to link to my friends who are on Windows Phone, but aren't really proficient enough to pick up on it on their own. I don't like having to guide them through stuff every single time, so these are really appreciated. Don't like it? Don't read it. Doesn't inconvenience you, but it's invaluable to others. Just like me with the app update round ups. I don't care about them at all, so I simply don't read them, but others live them. Keep 'em coming, I say. Hopefully we'll get article filters soon. But for now: Self filter.
  • I agree SwimSwim. Thanks
  • 100% agree. Well said :-)
  • Well, I didn't know that option, so... I liked the article!
  • I've had a VZ 928 since day one and I actually never knew this option existed with deleting all photos at once. I was deleting photos from the folder on my PC when the phone was plugged in through USB.
  • I am loving WP it just keeps getting better and better. Thanks for the tip.
  • Thanks! 22Gb deleted)))
  • We are not a kid...
    Silly tips...
  • Not everyone is bright like you kids. I am a little so. So this tip is awesome.
  • Your comment indicates otherwise.
  • Funny how they still doesn't let us select multiple videos to delete in wp8.1
  • You can use a file manager like pocket explorer to delete multiple videos at once.
  • Right it's ridiculous
  • Thanks to MIcrosoft, i have 30 gb on OneDrive.....so i can start deleting some pics.
  • Pick up Box also extra 10GB free. Hell pick Bittorent and view files from your PC have your own personal cloud.
  • I've got BOX account too, but i trust One Drive more for my personal stuff.....i even got an iCloud account.
  • Cool same here. I got Google Drive also, ;-). The more cloud the better.
  • If you live in the US: sign up for Bing Rewards, earn 100 credits (takes a week at most), then redeem 100GB for a year. Totally worth it, because a year is way more than enough time to earn enough credits to renew when time's up.
  • At SwimSwim you are on point. That is true I forget about that. How much longer before the offer expires?
  • At this point: Doesn't look like it's going anywhere. Don't quote me on it, but I'm going to say the offer is here indefinitely. Still, you never know, so try and grab it as soon as you can. But even if you miss it (which doesn't seem likely at this point): Microsoft seems to just be giving OneDrive storage away, so there's always sure to be another offer just around the corner.
  • Microsoft seems to just be giving OneDrive storage away, so there's always sure to be another offer just around the corner.
    They're giving it away now, knowing you'll fill it up, and then you'll need to pay to keep that space lest you lose your data. The shareholders have invested millions on Onedrive, and they need to get a Return on their Investment.
  • You won't lose your data...you will simply not be able to add additional data until you have either deleted some files or paid your subs!
  • For a time anyway. I think that after about one or two months, maybe three, you'll get an email from Microsoft warning that you have until a certain date to purchase more storage, delete stuff, or it back it up elsewhere before they automatically delete your stuff. How much time they give you, or how they choose what stuff they delete for you, I don't know...
  • I would be amazed if they did that...it isn't standard industry practice from what I can tell (Box and Dropbox do not do this - at least in my experience anyway. I got some free 50GB accounts with those providers that lasted between 12 and 24 months. I filled them with various things, and despite not having renewed for more than 10 months or so, I have yet to receive any warning emails).
    Microsoft's pricing strategy is very reasonable though...so even if I do have to pay in the future, I won't be too fussed. It feels like a pretty good value service at present.
    I do wish they'd do some terrabyte price plans. I'd like to be able to have everything in the cloud (with just a legacy hard drive kicking around as a just in case)
  • Well I never thought to try this. Thanks for the tip and I'll be clearing 4GB of space after I store the content to my laptop.
  • Well... If you mean storing on your laptop via USB cable and File explorer, Then you wouldn't need to do this. Drag and drop, then select all and delete. Or, select all, CUT, then paste. Backed up and freed space on your phone in 2 mouse clicks.
  • Or the Windows Phone app does it for you as soon as you plug in.
  • Thanks Mark... Had never realized this option was available.
  • Glad to help =)
  • I just... I can't even. My mind is simply blown over the fact that this post was even necessary lol
  • I'm also a little perplexed
  • Why?  Is it so hard for you to fathom that someone may have just picked up a WP device and is new to the OS, and just happened to come across this website for information on their device?   I, too, was once new to WP, and I've garnered many useful tips from site.
  • I reiterate what I said earlier: "This is a good tutorial article for those who aren't tech savvy. I find these convenient to link to my friends who are on Windows Phone, but aren't really proficient enough to pick up on it on their own. I don't like having to guide them through stuff every single time, so these are really appreciated.
    Don't like it? Don't read it. Doesn't inconvenience you, but it's invaluable to others. Just like me with the app update round ups. I don't care about them at all, so I simply don't read them, but others live them.
    Keep 'em coming, I say. Hopefully we'll get article filters soon. But for now: Self filter."
  • This is new to me. Thanks a lot for pointing this out!
  • Didn't knew about that. Saved a bunch of tapping especially when going on trips and taking out 584838929020 pics. Thanks :)
  • I'm surprised Microsoft didn't integrate WP 8.1 with OneDrive in the same way they did in W8.1. That would've make getting free space so much easier.
  • Yeah. SmartFiles is one of my favorite features.
  • Nice post Mark. But I perceive that you will get a heavy dose of negative response from i converts. This is to simple for them. Good luck kid. I think this is a good post. Thanks
  • Huh. I guess I'm just one of those people who clears stuff as soon as I'm done with it...
  • Does this clear the highres photos too? I'll have to test when I have some time.
  • I think it does, because I know regular deleting in the phone removes the high res images, so I'd think this be the same. Don't quote me on that, however.
  • An article for this thing...:(
  • I assume it only deletes the images on the device and not on Onedrive....
  • Correct.  This deletes local copies only.  You have to delete from Onedrive directly to delete those copies.
  • I cant believe the negative response from some people over a helpful article. Sure I knew about this since Ive been around since wp7 but obviously from the comments, not everyone is familiar with the ins and outs of wp so why not have articles like this on occasion.
  • I think, and sorry if this is insulting to anyone, that its really more like disappointment that people buy devices and don't bother to try things out. When I get a new car, I want to know what every single button inside and out does. Amd honestly, press and hold isn't a new thing or exclusive WP. Everyone should try to press and hold on anything and see what happens...you never know what basics you might discover.
  • That's you. Not everyone is you.
  • I didn't know that ...
    I wish the Camera Roll would disappear if it was empty just like the saved pictures & screenshots folders instead of the ugly grey square. Thanks Mark.
  • What are photos? And Videos? What is WP? And where is the camera? What is a roll? Is deleting something new? Are windows (phone) the same windows I have in my house? How do I use them? I'm sorry for this noob reply. But what is?..... No I will stop now.
  • Fun is needed sometimes. But its still a good simple post for those who didn't know this ;)
  • Thanks for the tip, I have successfully cleared 10mb of photos.
  • hey guys, do you know how take a picture while recoding a vido on windowsphone 8.1 ???
  • Play back your video...when the photo you want comes into frame, pause the video...what for the on screen buttons to disappear - then take a screenshot (volume down/power)
  • Yeah, unfortunately, this is the best you can do at the moment. It's far from ideal, but it will have to do. Hopefully, new capabilities in 8.1 will allow third party apps to enable this functionality. Of course, there's a fair chance that only newer hardware (like the 1520, Icon, 930) will be able to do this. Full resolution photos, anyways.
  • Thanks for the tip!! Didn't realize you could do it this way.
    Can you please do an article on how one changes his profile pic on Facebook using the ME tile in 8.1? At the moment it just changes the Outlook image and not FB. A bit frustrating since this used to be so simple. Thanks! Would greatly appreciate some help.
  • Thanks for the tip. It seems so simple but surprisingly I didn't know that.
  • How about just MOVE the pix to your PC?
  • This is new to me. Thanks for the concise and helpful article.
  • Cool tip. I didn't thought of long-pressing the Cameral Roll before. :)
  • Thanks!!! I always used the computer to delete all files... This is better... They are already backed up and I always way receive ,ahem, photos that need to be purged.... Keep the articles coming... Even long time WP user and tech folks can learn a thing or two..
  • Deleting files is easy. Keeping the full resolution images safe in OneDrive, and not taking up space on your phone is the trick. Being able to just have the thumbnail version of the images on your phone is better. Ready for downloading one to view full screen or to attach a full resolution version to a email. There must be a way.
  • Out of topic... I just want to know how I can regulate the number of decimal points in windows phone office(excel) incase I have set formulas
  • In windows phone 7.x there is an option with zune desktop to delete all photos and videos from your phone, after all content is uploaded and saved to your desktop computer. Is this option also available in windows phone 8.x?
  • thanks very good i like  
  • How did I not know about this?
  • This article is good for WP8 users sińce you can only select multiple photos in the Camera Roll folder and not videos.
  • I would love to delete my camera roll but I can't unless I know what has been synced?
  • How about a way to CREATE new albums, and be able to MOVE photos out of camera roll to another album. Wow...now there's a idea, Microsoft!  Also blows me away that no one has created a simple app for this. (and WITHOUT having to USB to my computer or use OneDrive)
  • Slightly off topic, just found that if you are in the WP8.1 Photo Hub and click on the ALL tab, you can then tap on any of "Month Year" headings in red to bring up a quick pick list of all the "Month Year" headings. Kind of handy if you are searching for a photo and know a month and a year that it was taken in.
  • When you delete from your phone and it is backing up and syncing to OneDrive does it delete what is on OneDrive too? Or is onedrive safe when you delete from your camera roll on phone?
  • Please any frnds tell me how to delete photos from one drive