How to Allow or Prevent Others From Installing Removable Storage Devices on Windows

Do you want to prevent others from stealing your PC data through removable storage devices? Or do you want to protect your device from harmful files contained on removable storage devices?

In this article, we will explore how you can prevent others from installing removable storage devices in Windows. That way, your device will not read any removable storage devices without your permission. Finally, we will also show you how to allow others to install specific removable storage devices.

How to prevent others from installing removable storage devices

Let’s start by looking at how you can prevent others from installing any removable storage devices on your PC. You can do this using the Local Group Policy Editor or the Registry Editor.

Using the Local Group Policy Editor

Using a Windows laptop on a brown desk
Using the Local Group Policy Editor

Local Group Policy Editor (LGPE) is a reliable tool for troubleshooting system errors. Interestingly, you can also use it for other tasks, such as preventing others from changing your Windows desktop background.

Now, here’s how to use the LGPE to prevent others from installing removable storage devices in Windows:

  1. Press Win + R to open the Run command dialog box.
  2. Writes gpedit.msc and press Get into to open the LGPE.
  3. navigate to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > System > Device Installation > Device Installation Restrictions.
  4. Double click on the Prevent installation of removable devices option on the right side.
Clicking on the Prevent installation of removable devices option
Using the Local Group Policy Editor

Select Activated on the next screen to prevent others from installing removable storage devices on your PC. Alternatively, select Disabled either not configured to restore default settings.

Finally, press Apply for and then press OK to save these changes.

Having trouble accessing the LGPE in Windows Home? There are some tricks that you can apply to access the LGPE in Windows Home. But if that sounds complicated for you, skip to the Registry Editor method.

Using the Registry Editor

A person typing commands on a laptop
Using the Registry Editor

Registry Editor is another reliable tool that you can use to adjust system settings and fix PC problems.

However, this tool is quite sensitive. Therefore, it is often worth backing up the Registry before editing your keys.

Now, here is how to use Registry Editor to prevent others from installing removable storage devices in Windows:

  1. Press Win + R to open the Run command dialog box.
  2. Writes regedit and press Get into to open Registry Editor.
  3. Copy and paste the following command in the address bar and press Get into:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows

From there, follow these steps:

  1. Right click on the windows folder and select New > Key. From there, name this key as DeviceInstall and press Get into.
  2. Right click on the DeviceInstall key and select New > Key. Then name the key as restrictions and press Get into.
  3. Click on the restrictions folder, right-click a blank space on the right, and then select New > DWORD (32-bit) Value. From there, name the value as DenyRemovable Devices and press Get into.
When clicking the DenyRemovableDevices value
Using the Registry Editor

Now follow these steps:

  1. Double click on the DenyRemovable Devices worth.
  2. Select the value data What 1 and then press OK to prevent others from installing storage devices on your PC. Alternatively, set the value data What 0 and press OK to allow others to install removable storage devices on your PC.
  3. Close Registry Editor and reboot your device to save these changes.

How to prevent others from installing specific removable storage devices

In some cases, you may want to prevent others from installing specific removable storage devices. So, we will show you how you can do it using the LGPE or the Registry Editor.

Using the Local Group Policy Editor

A lady using a Windows PC while holding a cup
Using the Local Group Policy Editor

Here’s how to use the LGPE to prevent others from installing certain removable storage devices on your PC:

  1. Press Win + R to open the Run command dialog box.
  2. Writes gpedit.msc and press Get into to open the LGPE.
  3. navigate to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > System > Device Installation > Device Installation Restrictions.
  4. Double click on the Prevent installation of devices matching any of these device IDs option on the right side.
By clicking the Prevent installation of devices matching any of these device IDs option
Using the Local Group Policy Editor

From there, follow these steps:

  1. Select Activated on the next screen.
  2. Click on the Show button in the lower right corner. This should appear in the Show Contents window.
  3. Enter the device ID of the removable storage device in the Worth section. You can find Device ID for different storage devices on the Microsoft website.
  4. Press OK after selecting your device ID.
  5. Press Apply for and then press OK to save these changes. Alternatively, select any Disabled either not configured to restore default settings.

Using the Registry Editor

Person using a Windows PC while placing it on a lap
Using the Registry Editor

Alternatively, you can use Registry Editor to prevent others from installing specific storage devices on your PC.

Here are the steps you need to follow:

  1. Press Win + R to open the Run command dialog box.
  2. Writes regedit and press Get into to open Registry Editor.
  3. Copy and paste the following command in the address bar and then press Get into:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows

From there, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the DeviceInstall folder in the Windows folder. If it is missing, right click on the windows folder, select New > Keyand then name this key as DeviceInstall. From there, press Get into to save these changes.
  2. Click on the restrictions inside the DeviceInstall folder. If the key is missing, right-click on the DeviceInstall key and select New > Key. Finally, name the key as restrictions and then press Get into.
  3. Right click on the restrictions folder, select New > Key, and then name this key with the device ID of the storage device you want to lock. For now, let’s call this key the Device identification key.
  4. Click on the Device identification key and then right click on a blank space on the right.
  5. Select New > DWORD (32-bit) Valuename the value as Deny Device IDand then press Get into.
Clicking on the DenyDeviceIDs option

Now, you can prevent others from installing specific storage devices on your PC by following these steps:

  1. Double click on the Deny Device ID worth.
  2. Select the value data What 1 and then press OK. Finally, close Registry Editor and reboot your device to save these changes.

How to allow others to install specific removable storage devices

Instead of preventing others from installing removable storage devices, you might want to allow them to install specific devices. So, we will show you how you can do it using the LGPE and the Registry Editor.

Using the Local Group Policy Editor

A person using a Windows device at a desktop
Using the Local Group Policy Editor

Here’s how to use the LGPE to allow others to install specific storage devices on your PC:

  1. Press Win + R to open the Run command dialog box.
  2. Writes gpedit.msc and press Get into to open the LGPE.
  3. navigate to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > System > Device Installation > Device Installation Restrictions.
  4. Double click on the Allow installation devices matching any of these device IDs option on the right side.
By clicking the Allow installation devices matching any of these device IDs option
Using the Local Group Policy Editor

From there, follow these steps:

  1. Select Activated on the next screen.
  2. Click on the Show button in the lower right corner. This will appear in the Show Content window.
  3. Enter the device ID in the Worth section and then press OK. You can check the Device ID for different storage devices on the Microsoft website.
  4. Press OK continue.
  5. Press Apply for and then press OK to save these changes.

Using the Registry Editor

Person using a Windows PC

You can also use Registry Editor to allow others to install specific storage devices on your PC.

Here are the steps you need to follow:

  1. Press Win + R to open the Run command dialog box.
  2. Writes regedit and press Get into to open Registry Editor.
  3. Copy and paste the following command in the address bar and then press Get into:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\DeviceInstall\Restrictions

From there, follow these steps:

  1. Right click on the restrictions folder and select New > Key.
  2. Give this key a name using the relevant device ID and then press Get into. For now, let’s call this key the Device identification key.
  3. Click on the Device identification key. Next, right click on a blank space on the right and then select New > DWORD (32-bit) Value.
  4. Name the value as Allow Device ID and press Get into.
By clicking the AllowDeviceIDs option

Now, you can allow others to install specific storage devices on your PC by following these steps:

  1. Double click on the Allow Device ID worth.
  2. Select the value data What 1 and then press OK.
  3. Close Registry Editor and reboot your device to save these changes.

Preventing the installation of suspicious storage devices in Windows is easy

Removable storage devices make it easy for you to share files with anyone. However, others can often use removable storage devices to steal your data. In some cases, some people may use faulty storage devices that could wreak havoc on your PC.

And if you just want to disable read or write access for your removable storage devices, there are solutions for that too.

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