How can I know on which drive is Windows installed?

Super User Asked by Pietro on August 24, 2020

I have two exact copies of Windows 10, one on drive C: and one on drive D:. These are two internal drives in the same laptop.

How can I know which Windows is running?

How can I select the one to launch during boot?

6 Answers

The drive letters like C: are only assigned during Runtime of a Windows installation, so they will usually be both C: for both your installations.

Open an elevated cmd.exe or Powershell.exe (as Administrator), then type:


after a moment, type:

list volume

You get something like this:

 Volume ###  Ltr  Label        Fs     Type        Size     Status     Info
 ----------  ---  -----------  -----  ----------  -------  ---------  --------
 Volume 1         WinBOOT      FAT32  Partition    350 MB  Healthy    System
 Volume 2     D   Win1         NTFS   Partition     31 GB  Healthy
 Volume 3     C   Win2         NTFS   Partition     33 GB  Healthy    Boot
 Volume 4     S   Data         NTFS   Partition    380 GB  Healthy

In this case you can see that the Windows on Volume 3 is currently running, there is another one on Volume 2, Boot in the Info column on the far right indicates that this is the current Windows Drive.

you can see the same by open Disk Management:


and look for Boot in the Status column of volumes.

When setting up a dual boot Windows you should use descriptive names for each boot entry.

Correct answer by Peter Hahndorf on August 24, 2020

There are many options to do as others users told

A simplest option I use to identify OS in drive in multi boot is to right click the Windows start menu and click explore and the profile directory opens for the user and I got to know the drive letter from which I booted the OS

I have 2 Windows 10, 2 Windows 7 and 3 Windows XP installed and modified boot menu and categorised it and named it like Windows 10 for C drive (study), Windows 10 for D drive (games), Windows 10 for e drive (banking), Windows 10 for f drive (downloading)

You can modify boot menu with the following way

Secondly I run CMD which to opens in the default directory system directory where windows installed

Thirdly as told by other users following ways and commands and variables to know it

  1. diskmgmt.msc
  2. %windir% 3. echo %systemroot%
  3. wmic OS GET SystemDrive /VALUE

Answered by Androidquery on August 24, 2020

Press Windows+R to bring up the Run command box.

Type in the command msconfig and press Enter,

This will bring up system configuration settings. Click on the 'Boot' tab.

Answered by Naeem on August 24, 2020

Some other ways

  • Open the run dialog with Win+R, type then Enter. That'll show your Windows drive. (Tip: running . will show your home folder and .. will show your users folder)
  • Open start menu, type "system info" and open System Information. You'll see the Windows Directory under System Summary
  • Open start menu, type "disk management" or press Win+R > diskmgmt.msc > Enter. That'll list all the drives in your PC. The system drive will be listed with the Boot flag, most likely along with "Crash Dump" and "Page File"
  • Simply press Win+R and run cmd. The path to cmd.exe is often shown on the title bar by default. On some systems it simply shows "Command Prompt" but in that case you can look at the prompt string which often points to your user folder in the system drive

    cmd with path in title

    This is quick but not reliable either, so while you're at the commmand prompt just run the commands in other answers or you can run echo %systemroot% or set sys

    C:>set sys
  • Press Win+Pause or right click My Computer > Properties > System Protection. Your system drive will be listed with the word "System"

    system protection

That said, nowadays Windows often shows its system drive always as C: regardless of its system volume position in a drive, so a drive label or device name is more useful than a drive letter

Answered by phuclv on August 24, 2020

Open CMD an Type in wmic OS GET SystemDrive /VALUE

This Will Return System Drive Letter.

Answered by vaku on August 24, 2020

There are a few ways, and I'll mention the quickest ways that come into my mind.

  1. Open Run dialog (Winkey+R) and type the below command and Enter, it'll open your current Windows installation directory

  2. Open Task manager and select a system process (something like svchost.exe or winlogon.exe) in Details/Processes tab. Right click on that and you can see Open File Location, which will also open your windows directory.

Answered by Vishwa on August 24, 2020

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