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Disable Installation of Removable Devices in Windows 10

By default, Windows 10 automatically mounts a removable drive like USB Flash drive you have connected to the computer. If the OS is able to recognize its file system, it will assign a drive letter to the drive. It is possible to change this behavior and prevent the OS from recognizing newly connected removable drives automatically.

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The change will affect new drives only. Devices you have already connected to the computer earlier will continue to function until you disconnect them. After that, they will no longer be recognized by the OS.

This restriction can be activated with either a Group Policy option or a Registry tweak. The Local Group Policy Editor is available in Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise, and Education editions. All editions can use the Registry tweak method.

You must be signed in with an administrative account to continue.

To disable Installation of Removable Devices in Windows 10, do the following.

  1. Download the following ZIP archive: Download ZIP archive.
  2. Extract its contents to any folder. You can place the files directly to the Desktop.
  3. Unblock the files.
  4. Double click on the Disable_installation_of_removable_devices.reg
    file to merge it.
  5. To apply the changes you made, restart Windows 10.

You are done!

To undo the change, use the provided file Enable_installation_of_removable_devices.reg. Don't forget to restart the OS after merging it.

How it works

The Registry files above modify the Registry branch

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\DeviceInstall\Restrictions

Tip: See how to go to a Registry key with one click.

To disable installation of removable drives, create a new 32-bit DWORD value DenyRemovableDevices under the mentioned path and set its value data to 1. Note: Even if you are running 64-bit Windows you must still create a 32-bit DWORD value.

Supported values:

DenyRemovableDevices = 1 - disable installation of removable drives.

DenyRemovableDevices = 0 - installation of removable drives is enabled.

If you are running Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise, or Education edition, you can use the Local Group Policy Editor app to configure the options mentioned above with a GUI.

Disable Installation of Removable Devices using gpedit.msc

  1. Press Win + R keys together on your keyboard and type:
    gpedit.msc

    Press Enter.Windows 10 run gpedit

  2. Group Policy Editor will open. Go to Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\System\Device Installation\Device Installation Restrictions. Enable the policy option Prevent installation of removable devices as shown below.Windows 10 Prevent Installation Of Removable Devices
  3. Restart the computer.

That's it.

See the following articles:

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Author: Sergey Tkachenko

Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube.

6 thoughts on “Disable Installation of Removable Devices in Windows 10”

    1. It pretty much prohibit users from using their own USB drives as a security reason. For a corporate PC, this would make total sense.

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