How to Fix: Remove Drive Letters from File Explorer

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Infopackets Reader John D. writes:

" Dear Dennis,

I just upgraded to Windows 10 recently. When I click on File Explorer by the Start menu (which brings up This PC or "My Computer" in previous editions of Windows), I now see C and D drive and now a drive E which appears to be empty - it is only about 1 gigabyte large. I don't know where this drive came from but I have no use for it and would prefer not to see it. Is there any way to remove this drive letter in file explorer? "

My response:

Some manufactures will assign partitions on the hard drive for Windows or BIOS recovery or some other reason - hence you may have up to 6 partitions on the hard drive when you are technically only using (and seeing) one or two drive letters via This PC / My Computer. Sometimes when you reinstall or upgrade Windows, these other partitions may appear in Windows Explorer / File Explorer, when in fact they should be hidden from view.

How to Fix: Remove Drive Letters from File Explorer

It is possible to remove drive letters from appearing in File Explorer / Windows Explorer using Disk Management.

To do so:

  1. Click Start, then type in diskmgmt.msc. Wait for "diskmgmt.msc" or "Create and format hard disk partitions" to appear in the list, then click it.
  2. The Disk Management window should now appear. Near the bottom half of the window you should see a list of drive letters that are assigned to the system. Locate the drive letter that you would prefer not to see in the list, then left click to select it. Once it's highlighted, right click it and select "Change Drive Letters and Paths".
  3. A new window will appear with the drive letter already selected; click the Remove button to remove the drive letter from Windows Explorer / File Explorer. This will not delete the drive or the data on the disk - it will only remove the drive letter from being seen in Windows Explorer / File Explorer.
  4. Upon clicking the 'Remove' button, another window will appear, stating: "Some programs that rely on drive letters might not run correctly. Are you sure you want to remove this drive letter?" Click Yes if you are certain the drive isn't being used in conjunction with any of your installed programs. Note: should you decide to reverse these changes, you can always re-assign a drive letter using the same method in this step, except instead of choosing "Remove" you would click "Add".
  5. Close the disk management window, then go to This PC / My Computer. The drive letter should now be removed.

I hope that helps.

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About the author: Dennis Faas is the owner and operator of With over 30 years of computing experience, Dennis' areas of expertise are a broad range and include PC hardware, Microsoft Windows, Linux, network administration, and virtualization. Dennis holds a Bachelors degree in Computer Science (1999) and has authored 6 books on the topics of MS Windows and PC Security. If you like the advice you received on this page, please up-vote / Like this page and share it with friends. For technical support inquiries, Dennis can be reached via Live chat online this site using the Zopim Chat service (currently located at the bottom left of the screen); optionally, you can contact Dennis through the website contact form.

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