What is the Z drive?
After upgrade to Windows 10 or have partitioned your hard drive using Disk Management or other disk partitioning software, there are chances that you will find a mysterious Z drive in Windows 10/8/7 in File Explorer. If you try to open it, you will receive the following massage: “You don’t currently have permission to access to folder“. If you open Disk Management, you can find this local disk (Z:) appearing in File Explorer does not show up. This Z partition maybe contains some system restore files or temporary files, so it is recommended to just let it be since it does not take much space. If you really want to get rid of it badly, you can use one of the two methods in the following.
Tested method to remove mysterious Z drive in Windows 10
If you get this Windows 10 Z: drive after partition your hard drive, you can follow the steps below to get rid of rid.
1. Backup files on the drive behind C: drive, ususally D: drive.
2. Download and run a free partition manager tool AOMEI Partition Assistant.
3. Delete the D: drive Partition using AOMEI Partition Assistant.
4. Create the D: drive with the unallocated space.
5. Restart your computer and you shall find the unwanted Z drive disappears.
If you did not do some disk partitioning before you the Z drive appears, you can use another method that doesn’t need to delete a partition.
Permanent solution to getting rid of Z drive in Windows 10/8/7
This method is to add two new key in Registry. Though this has been tested by many users, it is not yet confirmed by Microsoft. As you know, impropriate changes in Registry may result in serious system issues, so it is highly recommended to backup system before you proceed with the following steps.
1. Open Registry Editor. You can press Win + R key, type “regedit”
2. Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies, right click on the blank spot, and select New>32 bit Dword or 64 bit Dword to create a new key with a name “NoDrive”.
3. Double click on the new created key and set the value as “33554432”.
4. Then create a same key on HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer
5. Exit Registry Editor and restart your computer.
After that the Z drive in Windows 10/8/7 will never appear in your File Explorer again. It is recommended to use the second method because it does not delete a partition and it easier to follow.