How to Prevent Google Drive App from Showing a Popup to Backup Devices Whenever You Insert a Memory Card

If you’re running Google Drive on your computer and finding that every time you insert a memory card you’re getting a popup asking if you want to backup the memory card, here’s the simple fix.

Text & Photos By David Coleman
Filed Under: Memory Cards

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I’ve been finding it annoying that nearly every time I insert a memory card into the card reader on my Mac or attached an external drive, the Google Drive app was prompting me to back it up.

You can tell it to ignore each time. And it will log that choice and remember it. But it only remembers for each specific memory card or external drive. And if you use a bunch of different memory cards and drives, like I do, you can end up with a very long list of ignored devices and still not solve the annoyance of popups completely.

So I wanted to turn it off completely. There really are no circumstances I want Google Drive to be my primary backup for memory cards or external drives; I have better options for that (including Backblaze).

It’s not hard to turn it off. But it’s also not immediately apparent where to do it.

In the Google Drive app, click on the gear icon at the top right.

Screenshot of Google Drive app turning off the memory card prompt notification

You’ll then get a different screen, where you again have to click on the gear icon at the top right.

Screenshot of Google Drive app turning off the memory card prompt notification

Until you’re finally into the settings screen.

Scroll down until you get the Notification Preferences section.

You’ll see the Prompt me to back up devices setting, which is checked by default.

Screenshot of Google Drive app turning off the memory card prompt notification


If you’ve been using the prompt to ignore individual devices, you’ll also have a long list under Ignored USB Devices; I’ve cleared my list before taking this screenshot.

Simply uncheck it and click the Save button.

Screenshot of Google Drive app turning off the memory card prompt notification


It will then prompt you to restart the Google Drive app.

And you’re done! No more Google Drive prompts every time you insert a memory card.

Profile photo of David Coleman | Have Camera Will Travel | Washington DC-based Professional Photographer

David Coleman

I'm a professional photographer based in Washington, DC. Seven continents, up mountains, underwater, and many places in between. I've been shooting for 30+ years, and my photos and time-lapse videos have appeared in a bunch of different publications, from major newspapers to magazines and books, billboards, TV shows, professional sports stadiums, museums, and even massive architectural scrims covering world-famous buildings while they're being renovated. You can see some of my travel photography here and here.

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