This post from MiniTool Software introduces how to hide apps on Windows 10 and Windows 11. If your computer is easy to be accessed by others, this post might be helpful for you. You can choose one of the listed methods according to your preferences.
With the development of technology, more and more people start to use computers in their daily life. The latest operating systems from Microsoft are Windows 10 and Windows 11. On a computer with such an operating system, you can store a huge number of files and enjoy lots of programs as well as games.
Usually, you can find your installed programs and apps in the Windows Start menu, Windows Settings, Control Panel, and File Explorer. If there are multiple users on the computer, they can view the programs and apps, too.
Are you sharing a computer with others such as your family members or friends? If the answer is yes, you may have the experience of worrying that others would view or use the programs that you don’t want them to know.
For example, if you want to install a parental control or child monitoring program on your computer, you might be worried that your child can change or uninstall the program. In this case, you can hide the program on your computer to solve the problem. Hiding programs can also help prevent others from playing your games or using certain apps.
Do you know how to hide apps on Windows 10 and 11? Don’t worry. Here are several methods in the following contents and you can choose the one you prefer to have a try.
Method 1: Hide Apps in Start Menu via Windows Settings
As mentioned, you can view installed apps on Windows 10 via a lot of tools. The Start menu is one of the easiest ways, and you just need to click the Windows button on the bottom left corner or press the Windows key.
Here I would like to introduce how to hide programs on Windows 10 Start menu by using Windows Settings. And you can follow the steps below.
Step 1: Press Win + I to open Windows Settings quickly.
Step 2: Go to the Personalization category. Then select Start in the left pane.
Step 3: In the right pane, toggle off the option Show app list in Start menu.
Now, open the Start menu and you will be unable to see the app list including the app you want to hide from others.
Method 2: How to Hide All Apps on Windows 10/11 via Group Policy Editor
In addition to the Start menu, users can also view installed programs and features via Control Panel. They just need to go to Control Panel > Programs > Programs and Features.
If you want to hide all apps in Control Panel on Windows 10/11, you can try modifying Group Policy Editor, a tool in Windows to help the administrator manage various settings with Group Policy Objects.
Here are the detailed steps about how to hide all apps on Windows 10/11 Control Panel via Group Policy Editor.
Step 1: Press Win + R to invoke the Run window. Then input gpedit.msc and press Enter to launch Local Group Policy Editor.
Step 2: In Local Group Policy Editor, select User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Control Panel > Programs folder in the left pane.
Step 3: In the right pane, right-click Hide “Programs and Features” page and select Edit.
Step 4: In the pop-up window, select the Enabled option. Then click Apply and OK to keep the changes you have made.
After you enable the Hide “Programs and Features” page feature, others would see the following message when they try to view your installed programs and features in Control Panel: your system administrator has disabled Programs and Features. Therefore, it is obvious for people who use your computer to know that you have hidden your programs and features.
You should know that when you hide applications in Control Panel via Group Policy, no one can view, uninstall, change, or repair installed programs on your computer via Control Panel, but others can still find the hidden app from the Start menu. And you might have found that Group Policy Editor doesn’t allow you to hide an individual app. If you just need to hide one or several apps, go to the next method.
Method 3: Hide an Individual Application via Registry Editor
As you can see, the first two methods are better when you want to hide all apps on Windows 10/11.If you want to hide an individual app in Control Panel and wish others to be unaware of it, you can use Registry Editor.
Registry Editor is a built-in program in Windows operating systems. Please note that most registry keys are vitally important for an operating system. Therefore please back up your registry keys or create a restore point before you make any changes. In addition, please be careful and do not change or delete any keys by mistake.
Now, let’s see how to hide apps on Windows 10 and 11 via Registry Editor.
Step 1: Press Win + S to open the Windows Search utility. Then search for Registry Editor and open it.
Step 2: Navigate to the following path in Registry Editor:
Step 3: Click File > Export. Then select a location and click Save to back up the involved Registry keys.
Step 4: Scroll down and find the app you want to hide under the Uninstall folder. Then right-click the app and select New > DWORD (32-bit) Value. Here I set Firefox as an example.
Step 5: Name the new value as SystemComponent and right-click it and select Modify to change the value.
Step 6: In the pop-up window, change its Value data from 0 to 1.
After changing the Registry key, you can close Registry Editor and open Control Panel. Go to the list of your installed programs and features, and the hidden app won’t show in the list.
You will still be able to search the hidden app in the Windows Search utility and launch the app. If you don’t want others to see the app, you’d better delete or hide its shortcut on the desktop.
Method 4: Use a Professional Program to Hide Apps on Windows 10/11
Registry Editor is useful when you need to hide an individual app. However, the steps might be relatively complicated for users who are not familiar with this tool. And it is dangerous if you make any mistakes during the process. Don’t worry. Here is an alternative way – you can try a reliable and professional third-party program to hide your app.
Here I take the program named Hide From Uninstall List as an example. With such a program, you can hide an individual or multiple programs in a few clicks and without being worried about making mistakes.
Step 1: Download the zip file for this tool from the official website. Then unzip the zip file launch the tool.
Step 2: In the Hide From Uninstall List program, you can view all the installed programs and features on your computer. And you just need to right-click the program that you want to hide and select Hide from Programs and Features List.
Step 3: When its status turns to Hide, you can click File > Programs and Features to open Control Panel and the target app will disappear.
Method 5: Hide Apps on Windows 10/11 by Hiding a Partition
Another way to hide apps on Windows 10/11 is to hide the whole partition that contains the apps you want to hide. Usually, you can hide a partition by removing its drive letter in Disk Management. It is easy to operate but others can access the partition once they add the missing drive letter back.
To make sure others cannot access the files and programs stored on the partition, you can use a professional partition manager to hide the partition. Here I recommend MiniTool Partition Wizard, a reliable tool that can be used to create, move, resize, delete, wipe, and hide partitions, recover lost files, repair the corrupted file system, etc. It hides a partition by changing the partition type ID (on a MBR disk).
Now, let’s see how to hide apps on Windows 10/11 by hiding the partition with MiniTool Partition Wizard.
Step 1: Click the following button to download MiniTool Partition Wizard. Then install and launch it.
Step 2: When you see the main interface of MiniTool Partition Wizard, select the partition you need to hide and click Hide Partition from the left action panel.
Step 3: Click Apply to start hiding the partition. In the pop-up window, click Yes to confirm the operation.
Step 4: Delete the shortcuts of the apps you want to hide on your computer. If there are shortcuts on the desktop or other drives, others can still find the apps you hide by searching in the Windows Search utility. But they can’t launch the hidden apps as they will receive an error message “problem with shortcut” when they double-click the shortcut.
Step 5: After hiding the partition, your apps are still available in Control Panel. To hide it perfectly, you need to:
- Go to Control Panel > Programs > Programs and Features.
- Right-click an app in the hidden partition and select Uninstall. Then you will receive a message that an error occurred.
- You just need to click Yes to remove the app from the Programs and Features list. Don’t worry. You won’t lose your app in this step.
After the above steps, your apps have been hidden successfully. When you need to use the hidden apps, you just need to unhide the involved partition via MiniTool Partition Wizard and find the executable file of your apps in the installation folder to launch them.
This post introduces how to hide apps on Windows 10 desktop and Windows 11. If you have more ideas, you can share them with us in the following comment zone. For any problems with MiniTool software, you can contact us via [email protected] for solutions.