Manage USB access rights with USB Disk Manager

Martin Brinkmann
Jun 20, 2012
Updated • Jun 20, 2012
Software, Windows, Windows software

When you connect a removable USB drive to a Windows PC, you will notice that it works in many regards like any other hard drive or storage device on the PC from that moment on. You can copy files on the device or execute programs on it that you want to run on the system. The behavior makes sense in many environments, especially for home users.

Sometimes though you may want to change the access rights in regards to USB devices that are connected to the PC. Maybe because you do not want other users to transfer data from the PC to an USB device, or prevent the execution of programs stored on USB disks on the PC.

While you can do that in the Group Policy or Registry, you may prefer a graphical user interface that is letting you make those changes with a few clicks of the mouse button.

usb disk manager

USB Disk Manager is a portable program for the Windows operating system that you can use to make the following changes to the system:

  • Turn Write Protection on or off - This blocks any write attempts on removable USB drives on the system. Useful to block other users from copying data from the PC to the USB device, and to avoid the spreading of viruses via USB
  • Allow or deny the execution of software - Here you can block programs stored on the USB device from being run from the device. It is still possible to run the applications if they are first copied to the PC. The basic idea here is to block USB viruses from spreading to systems this way, but it can also block users from running their own applications, which may be useful for public Internet terminals.
  • Enable or disable removable USB disks -  This blocks write and read attempts when disabled, so that files can't be accessed or written anymore.

Keep in mind that plugged-in USB devices need to be reconnected before the settings take effect for them.

The application minimizes to the system tray, from where you can also switch between settings easily with a right-click on the icon.


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. Martin said on March 12, 2023 at 3:05 pm

    An even quicker way to open Task Manager is by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Esc.

  2. archie bald said on March 12, 2023 at 4:32 pm

    Win+Pause used to be the goto shortcut for me since… W95… Ms recently hijacked it and you now get Sysinfo. Device manager is still accessible this way: the second to last link at the bottom.

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