How to Install Programs on Second Hard Drive

This article will show you how to install programs on second hard drive and how to move installed programs to another location for releasing storage space.


By Lucas / Updated on October 24, 2023

Share this: instagram reddit

Can I install programs on second hard drive?

Some might wonder if he can install programs on the second hard drive. What if the programs can’t launch successfully? What if the computer meets any problems? Well, the answer is: you definitely can install programs on your second hard drive.

People who wish to install programs on a second hard drive might just confront a normal bothering situation—the C drive is full of the installed programs and data files. The default storage location in Windows usually causes this issue.

In Windows PC, the default saving location is the C drive on the primary hard disk which also carries the files of the operating system and lots of temporary data files. If the C drive holds too many files and programs, the performance of your hard drive and your computer will be affected.

If you have a proper hard drive to use as the second disk of your current machine, it will greatly relieve the storage pressure on your primary disk.

How to install programs on a second hard drive in Windows

To install programs on the second hard drive and ensure they won’t be automatically installed on your primary hard drive, we have two ways to help you.

Way 1. Change default storage location via File Explorer

In this way, we’ll show you how to change the default storage location by using File Explorer. After you change the default storage location, the applications you download in the future, no matter it’s from the web or other platforms, will be stored in the newly assigned location.

Step 1. Go to File Explorer.

Click on the “This PC” icon twice on your desktop to enter Windows Explorer.

Step 2. Enter "Properties" of Download folder.

Right-click the “Downloads” folder, and select “Properties” at the end of the menu.

Downloads in C drive

Step 3. Change storage location.

Click the “Location” tab. You can see the current storage path in the box.

Properties location

Step 4. Apply.

Click “Move” to change the default download location to your destination place, and click “Apply” to proceed.

▶ NoteMake sure the second hard drive connects well on your PC; if there are any problems with connection, the programs you’ll install on the target hard drive won’t boot successfully.

Apply Location

Step 5. Confirm the moving.

Then, you will see a warning “Do you want to move all the files from the old location to the new location”, please click “Yes”.

Move Yes

Way 2. Change installation information in Windows Settings

In this method, you’ll learn how to use Windows settings to change the storage location. The settings allow you to change not only the location of programs that you wish to download but the storage place of other files such as photos, videos, data files you add newly.

Step 1. Enter storage settings.

Press “Windows + I” in the desktop. Click “System” and choose “Storage”.

Step 2. Viste advanced settings.

Select “More storage settings” and go to “Where new content is saved in Settings”.

Step 3. Select the default storage path.

You can select different types of new file storage paths.

New content is saved

Further knowledge: How to move installed Apps to second hard drive

After you set the new storage location, the new applications will save in the new place. But what about the programs already installed? Can users move them to a new location?

Of course, you can move them, but not manually. A program needs many files that you can see on the machine and those you cannot see, which means it’s impossible to pack all necessary data files by users themselves.

However, AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional can execute this task for you. It’s a Windows disk and partition manager to assist Windows 11/10/8/8.1/7/XP/Vista PC users to easily manage the Windows computer, and one of all the helpful functions of this tool is “App Mover”.

This feature can detect all necessary files that the target programs need, including the hidden data files, and move them all with the programs to ensure the programs will run successfully. Uses just need to follow the guide and click the buttons, this software will finish the entire move quickly and safely.

Download Pro DemoWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

Step 1. Install and run AOMEI Partition Assistant.

After the download, open AOMEI Partition Assistant Pro, click "Free up" > App Mover.

App Mover

Step 2. Choose the location of the target apps.

In this window, select the disk where the program you want to transfer is located, and then click “Next”. You can also click "Manage/Restore Apps" to restore the moved programs.

Select target disk

▶ Tip: After the moving, if you wish to move the programs back, you can choose “Restore Apps”.

Step 3. Tick apps and set new storage locations.

Check the applications you want to move; you can select single or multiple selections. Then select the external hard drive to be moved, and click “Move”.

Select file

Step 4. Check the warning.

Read the prompts, click "OK" and "Move".


Step 5. Confirm and finish the moving.

Click “Finish” to over the task.

Move finsish

Then you can launch the programs you moved to check if it’s successful.

Final lines

In the article above, we offer you 2 ways to install programs on second hard drive for storage and a useful tool to help you move installed programs safely without reinstalling. You can also use this tool to search hidden large files and remove them to deeply clean your PC.

AOMEI Partition Assistant also has the Server Edition for Server 2022/2019/2016/2012(R2)/2008(R2), with which you can flexibly manage your Windows devices via other functions like “Disk Clone”, “Convert to GPT/MBR”, “Migrate OS to SSD”…

Lucas · Staff Editor
I prefer peaceful and quiet life during vacation,but sometimes I watch football match if my favorite club performs brilliantly in that season. And I love reading, painting and calligraphy, thus I send my friends festival handwriting cards every year.