Windows – New partition has been made automatically

partitioningwindows 7

I've just noticed a new partition which I never made:

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What's this? Isn't it probably caused by a virus or something?

Best Answer

This drive is created by the Office "Click to Run" program. It creates the Q: drive when you run an Office app.

From the Microsoft Knowledgebase

Office Click-to-Run products also use Microsoft virtualization technology that stores Office 2010 in virtualized application space. This virtual space separates Office 2010 from the regular file system and from the other applications on your computer. This separation lets Office 2010 coexist together with any existing version of Office that is already installed on your computer. There are also other benefits to Office Click-to-Run. For more information, visit the following Microsoft blog website

And:

What is the "Q:" drive?

Office 2010 Click-to-Run suite such as Office Starter 2010, Office Starter To-Go, Office Home and Student 2010, and Office Home and Business 2010 are based on some application virtualization technology. The Q: drive is the virtual file system drive where virtualized applications are located in the file system namespace. This Q: drive is not a typical drive. The Q: drive has no space that the user can access directly and is inaccessible from Windows Explorer or My Computer.

The article claims you shouldn't see the Q: drive, but I have seen it on a few machines. It is not harmful and can be ignored.

Basically when you run your copy of office it runs from a virtual storage device (Q:) that downloads the data you need when you first ask for it, after that it is cached and your Office installation will be faster from then on.

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