How to Hide Drives in “This PC” in Windows

How to Hide Drives in “This PC” in Windows

 

In this article, we will focus on modifying specific Policies to Hide Drives from appearing in “This PC”, which contains; Folders [3D Objects, Desktop, Documents, Downloads, Music, Pictures, Videos], Local Disk (C:), Local Disk (D:), etc.

How to Hide Drives in “This PC” in Windows [This PC - all drives accessible]

Someone somewhere would ask, “Why would I even need to hide disks?” The simple answer is, to prevent people who want to snoop into your data from finding any of your data. Imagine if someone was to open “This PC” on your PC just to find no “Local Disks” (partitions) to access. They would immediately lose interest in your PC! It’s Basic Security for a PC that has many ‘eyes’ on it!

Now before you get bored with the theory, how about some actual hands-on work…

 

Editing Windows Policies

Run the Command: “DevModeRunAsUserConfig.msc” on PowerShell (PS) or Command Prompt (CMD) or on the Run Command window (Windows button + R).

How to Hide Drives in “This PC” in Windows [DevModeRunAsUserConfig.msc]

Basically, this utility (“DevModeRunAsUserConfig.msc“) helps us modify functionalities of Windows. Windows OS uses Policies (rules) to perform its operations/functionalities. These policies need not be modified as they come pre-set in the OS when you install it. Technically speaking, everything you need to do with Windows can be done without messing around with these policies. (In reality, many people don’t even know such policies exist and can be modified!)

NOTE:// You might need to grant permissions to the app by clicking ‘Yes’ on the dialog that pops up, but it’s only if you did not run the command as an administrator.

This will open up a Microsoft Management Console (MMC) window.

The default selected folder is “Start Menu and Taskbar“. Navigate to “Window/1 Console Root/” on the File Menu. Below the Console Root folder, is “Local Computer Policy“, click on the drop-down menu to locate “User Configuration/Administrative Templates/Windows Components/File Explorer“. The full path will be displayed on the window title, so you can check if it is exactly as shown below;

DevModeRunAsUserConfig – [Console Root\Local Computer Policy\User Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\File Explorer]

How to Hide Drives in “This PC” in Windows [Hide these specified drives in My Computer]

Clicking File Explorer generates a list of policies available for modification on the right in a “Setting” pane. Find a policy that reads’ “Hide these specified drives in My Computer“! To open it, double click on it, or right click on it and click on ‘Edit’ to open a floating window.

 

Hiding Drives

The first thing you want to do is identify the drives you want to ‘Hide’. The policy only allows you to hide disks as a ‘combination’. Next, click on the radio button for “Enabled” to activate the policy. A previously greyed out ‘Options:‘ tab is now available for customization. Select the combination you want to Restrict/Hide).

How to Hide Drives in “This PC” in Windows [Hide or Restrict all drives]

Note that you can Hide/Restrict all drives. After hiding all drives in your “This PC”, you will only see the default folders. All drives are hidden; there is no way to access them directly! However, it is still possible to access them!

How to Hide Drives in “This PC” in Windows [This PC - all drives hidden or restricted]

 

How to Access Restricted Drives

You are probably asking, won’t this be so inconvenient even to me? How will I access the drives when I need to? Will I have to go through this whole process again just to disable the feature for hiding drives?

The answer is simple, NO! You don’t have to go through any hassle to access the disks yourself. All you have to do is know what Drive you want to access. For example; If you want to access a drive assigned to the letter “C:” (which is hidden), all you have to do is enter “C:” (without the quotes) on your address bar and hit Enter/Return key on your keyboard, as illustrated below:

How to Hide Drives in “This PC” in Windows [Accessing Restricted Drives]

How to Hide Drives in “This PC” in Windows [Successfully Accessed Restricted Drive]

 

How to Hide Drives in “This PC” in Windows
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