How I Used Hazel to Store Files From iMessage

Leonard Wall
2 min readOct 11, 2018


I wanted a way to store my photos and videos from iMessage. Currently, iMessage does not offer a native (or automated) way to save files to Photos. Hazel facilitates an automated way to save your files.

I started by installing Hazel, enabling messages on my MacBook, and syncing messages to iCloud (instructions are here).

Next, I created a Hazel Rule to run on my MacBook. The rule runs on the Attachments folder located here ~/Library/Messages/Attachments. The rule copies the files to a folder that I created under iCloud named From_iMessage.

Here is what my Hazel setup looks like:

Hazel Rules
This rule allows Hazel rules to continue because the Attachments folder contains multiple subfolders.
The script looks for various file types. You can add or remove extensions as needed.

The last step is opening Messages on my MacBook. Once it opens, select an message, and click on Details.

Once you click Details, scroll to the bottom of the Photos, and click Download. This process downloads all photos from iCloud to the Attachments folder. As photos download, Hazel Rules will run and copy the files to the folder you created.

Once you have completed this process, you can leave the rules in place, and Hazel will continue to copy photos.

Please feel free to leave comments and questions!