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What Is System Z On My Computer?

Written by, Nikola Dimovski

Updated March, 29, 2023

After upgrading your OS to Windows 10, you probably noticed a mysterious Z drive suddenly appeared in your File Explorer. 

But, what is system Z on my computer and how to remove it (and should you)? 

Read on.

What Does System Z Mean?

The system Z drive appears after upgrading to Windows 10. If you try to double-click on it, Windows will show a prompt that reads: “You don’t currently have permission to access this folder.”

According to Microsoft, the system Z drive on my computer is actually a restore partition that simply lets you revert back to the previous version of Windows in case you’re not a fan of the updated version. So you don’t need to worry about a virus potentially infecting your system.

Microsoft says that there is no need to delete the Z drive, but it doesn’t prevent users from removing it.

How To Remove System Z Drive?

If you still want to remove the Z drive from your computer, there are two ways to go about it. 

Option 1

  1. Go to Control Panel
  1. Select Network and Internet 
  1. Click on Internet Options under See Also and then Delete browsing history and cookies.

  1. Under Browsing history, open Settings, select Automatically and set the disk space to 1024 MB.

  1. Click OK, restart your computer, and the system Z will be removed from your Windows 10.

Option 2

  1. Open the Run application on your computer by pressing Win + R and then type inregedit’ on the box, click enter. This will open up the Registry Editor.
  1. Type in or copy + paste this path on the registry editor window. HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies
  1. Right-click on the blank area, select New and choose between 32-bit or 64-bit, either QWORD (64-bit) Value for 64-bit or DWORD (32-bit) Value.
  1. Type in “NoDrives” as Value name, then click Open.
  1. Select the “Decimal” on the radio button. 
  1. Enter “33554432” in the value data bar and click OK.
  1. Go back to the Registry Editor window and copy + paste this: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer
  1. Right-click on “Explorer.”
  1. Double-Click on the NoDrives DWORD or QWORD.
  1.  Select “Decimal” in the Edit Window.
  1. Enter “33554432” in the text box and click on “OK”.
  1. Finally, close the Registry Editor window and restart your computer. This should successfully remove the Z drive on Windows.

Bottom line

If you see a system Z partition in your File Explorer, don’t be alarmed. Microsoft says it’s only a partition drive that contains the necessary data to restore your OS to the previous version. What’s more, there are a couple of ways to remove the drive from your computer, including updating your Windows 10 (if applicable).

Frequently Asked Questions And Their Answers

How do I uninstall System Z?

You can either remove it from the Control Panel or by editing the Registry on your computer.

What is Z-drive on Windows?

For those still wondering  “What is system Z on my computer?”: It’s a partition that stores the old version of Windows. There is no reason to remove it from your computer unless you’re certain that you won’t go back to the previous version. No need to worry about interruption on your gaming or online learning.

My name is Nikola, and I’m an SEO Specialist and a tech enthusiast. I graduated from the Faculty of Economics, the department of E-Business Management. My experiences go from implementing ERP Solutions, CRM practices, and finally, on-page and off-page SEO. I take pride in staying ahead of the curve when it comes to SEO and keeping up with the latest changes to search algorithms. I love experimenting with new strategies and testing the results to see what works best. Outside of work, I enjoy tinkering with new tech gadgets and exploring the latest apps and software programs.