Is It Safe to Move Program Files to Another  Drive?

Is it safe to move Program Files to another drive when the C drive is almost full? Here, you are going to learn how to move Program Files to another drive safely and easily.


By Tina / Updated on May 12, 2023

Share this: instagram reddit

Can I move Program Files to another drive?


Can I move Program Files to another drive?

"I have a 1 TB computer. What take up space on the C drive are my games, which I don’t think need to be on the C drive. I also don’t want to just use my C drive and leave my D drive empty. If I want to use my D drive, can you help me move the Program Files folder to another drive?"

program files

Program Files is a standard folder in the Microsoft Windows operating system where all third-party applications are installed by default. 

As mentioned above, many applications downloaded by users on the Internet will be stored in the Program Files of the C drive by default. As more and more programs are downloaded, the storage space of the C drive may become smaller and smaller, which will lead to many problems such as low disk space warning and frequent system crashes. Therefore, it is necessary to move Program Files to another drive.

Is it safe to move Program Files to another drive?

Judging is it safe to move Program Files to another drive requires considering the type of data in the Program Files. If it is a system-related file, it’s not safe to move the file because it could break Windows. But if it is a Program Files that only includes downloaded applications, it’s safe to move them, and you don’t have to worry about harming your computer.

How to move Program Files to another drive

Although a simple copy-paste or drag-and-drop files operation can help you quickly move Program Files to another hard drive, the moved programs may fail to start and some data may be lost. Here, three methods will be shared to effectively move Program Files to a different drive including Registry Editor, mklink and a free third-party.

Method 1. Using Registry Editor to move Program Files

Windows provides us with the Registry Editor, which has a similar interface as the resource manager, it stores basic data such as the configuration information of the hardware in the user’s computer and the initial conditions of the application. By using the registry editor, you can know how to move program files from C to D drive on Windows 11.

Before you do: You need to create a new folder called Program files or Program files(x86) on another drive (eg: D: drive).

Step 1. Copy the Program Files or Program Files(X86) folders in the system disk, and paste them to the D disk, then wait for a few minutes.

Step 2. Press the “Win + R” to open the Run box. Then, input "regedit" and hit "OK" to launch Registry Editor.

Step 3. Find the following path on Registry Editor and change the drive letter from "C:" to "D:":


Step 4. Right-click "Program Files" and click "Modify".

Step 5. Change the letter "C" into “D”and hit "OK".

change letter C

Method 2. Moving Program Files to another drive with mklink

mklink is a tool for creating symbolic links under Windows, it exists in Windows Vista and later versions of the Windows operating system. You can use mklink to move Program Files from C drive to D drive. Detailed steps are as follows:

Step 1. Move the "C:\Program Files" folder to "D:\Program Files".

Step 2. Press "Windows" and input "cmd", then click "Run as administrator".

Step 3. Copy and paste the following command and hit Enter (If you are not familiar with this command, type "mklink" and learn how to operate):

mklink /D "Program Files" "D: Program Files"("Program Files" refers to the name of the new symbolic link name. "D: Program Files” "refers to the path of your new link.)

type mklink

After finishing this operation, you can store all the installed files in D:\Program Files.  

Method 3. App Mover to move program files to another drive

Although you can move Program Files to another drive by using the Registry Editor and mklink, the two methods are difficult for users who are not familiar with computers, and once the operation is wrong, it may even lead to data loss. At this point, you have a better choice.

A powerful folder transfer tool AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional can help you easily move Program Files to another drive without losing data. In this graphics tool, you can use the “App Mover” feature to move the Program Files folder with just a few simple clicks and all Program Files will work normally. If you want to delete large files from the PC, it can also help you.

Download Demo Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

Warning: Is it safe to move Program Files to another drive? Move folders does not allow you to move the entire program files because it contains some system related folders. However, this function can move the sub-folder of program files. So please move system-independent applications or folders according to your needs in the Program Files.

Step 1. Install and open AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional, click "App Mover" under "Free up".

app mover

Step 2. Click "Move Folder" in the popped window.

move folder

Step 3. Select the program files you want to move. Select the location drive under the window, and click "Move".

click move

Step 4. Click "OK" to begin the process and wait until finish moving operation.

click OK


In this article, you can find the answer about is it safe to move Program Files to another drive. With Registry Editor, Resetting PC Operation and AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional, you can move Program Files to another drive. Of course, the most convenient and time-saving method is AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional. Besides, it has more advanced features, such as allocating free space from one partition to another and cloning partitions. Please turn to Server Edition if you are a Windows Server user.

Tina · Staff Editor
Tina is an English editor of AOMEI Technology. She has a positive attitude and full of energy. On her work, she always keeps thinking to figure out the solutions for users' problems, and writes the answers so that can help someone. In her daily life, she likes to sing, watch TV and sleep. She always being grateful and happy to all the things happened and all the people encountered.