How To Remove The Office 2010 Virtual Drive In Windows


One of the “side-effects” of installing Microsoft Office Starter on the system is the creation of a virtual drive on the system. This drive is visible in Windows Explorer, usually mapped to letter q or r, but not accessible by the user. When you click on the drive you get the notification that the Location is not available and that access is denied.

Microsoft states that “Microsoft Office Starter 2010 uses the Application Virtualization (App-V) technology”, and that it “therefore requires the creation of a Virtual Drive”.

Microsoft also notes that “this virtual drive is intentionally not accessible by end users in order to prevent accidental damage to Microsoft Office Starter’s file structure”.

While that is all fine and good, users who uninstall Office Starter will notice that the virtual drive created during installation remains on the system. And that’s a issue. It took some fiddling around to find the reason for this. Microsoft Office Click-to-Run 2010 gets installed alongside Microsoft Office Starter 2010. This is the program responsible for the creation of the virtual drive on the operating system.

It is not really clear why it is not uninstalled when Office Starter is uninstalled. Could be that Microsoft is utilizing the technology for other products as well, so that an uninstallation could prevent those programs from starting up properly.

If you are certain that no other programs depend on the Click and Run application, you can uninstall it separately. Open the Windows Control Panel and search for the Programs and Features applet.

Locate Microsoft Office Click-to-Run 2010 (or another version depending on the Office Starter version installed) and select to uninstall it.

A restart of the computer is required to complete the removal of Office Click-to-Run and the virtual drive that it has created on the system.

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