Window 10 EFI System Partition and Recovery Partition Show Up In File Explorer

New ASUS ROG with Windows 10.  I have only had this machine for a week. OS is installed on a SSD.  Today, out of the blue, 2 new drives showed up when I went to copy some files from the Data drive (D:) to an external USB drive.  Even if I remove the external drive they still show up in Explorer

The 2 drives are EFI System Partition which shows as Drive E: and the Recovery Partition which shows as Drive F:.  When I look at these drives in Disk Management they show up but do not have drive letters assigned.  

Not sure why all of a sudden these to partition show up. Any insight as to why this might have happened and if it is safe to remove the drive letters would be greatly appreciated. Not sure if  . . .  mountvol E: /d would remove the drive letter or not since Disk Management reports that it does not have one assigned. At this point I did not want to screw up the OS (which is working fine) by trying a bunch of stuff. Thought maybe someone else had also had this happen and could share their experience. 

Thanks in advance for you help.

Hi,

We appreciate the elaborate explanation of the issue.

We would like you to send us a screenshot of the drivers under Disk Management and This PC, this will help us know if you can safely remove/delete the partition that has been created. To learn how to add an image to your post refer to the link

How to include a screenshot in your post 

To get a clearer image of the issue in hand, I would like you to provide the information stated below:

1. Did you upgrade to Windows 10 Anniversary Update, prior to this issue?

2. If no, did you make any changes with respect to updates or software prior to the above issue?

3. Is there any content inside the created drives?

4. Are you bale to access them? If no, do you get any error message? If yes, kindly provide the same?

Your reply is very important for us to ensure a proper resolution. Please get back to us with the above information in order to assist you accordingly.

 

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Seems to be exactly the same what we've faced within our company today and what is beeing discussed here:

https://www.reddit.com/r/techsupport/comments/4x2bui/esp_f_drive_suddenly_appeared/

Screenshot posted on that site: http://imgur.com/a/HX0if

I believe one of these KB may have caused this and one of them fixed it, since after a restart it disappeared after further updates have been applied. Afterwards I've tested updates on my PC and didn't get it but last Updates have been applied on 27th of july 2016 and the Updates below have been installed on my workstation today, which matches the Updates the affected systems had after they did restart again for applying latest updates which made it dissappear on the affected systems.

KB3172729

KB890830

KB3176493

Hope this helps.

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One thing that I need to point out is that the machine was shut down last night and when it was restarted this morning only one extra drive is showing up and it is listed as SYSTEM drive F:  It does appear that it is the EFI drive.

1. Did you upgrade to Windows 10 Anniversary Update, prior to this issue?  

Answer: No

2. If no, did you make any changes with respect to updates or software prior to the above issue?

Answer: Since this is a new machine the OS and some drivers were updated several day before this happened. It did not show up until several days after this was done. No changes were made to the machine for at least 2 days and probably 3 days prior to the drives showing up.

3.  Is there any content inside the created drives? 

Answer: There does appear to be some data in the EFI drive. Although This PC shows it having 256MB free of 256MB.

4. Are you able to access them? If no, do you get any error message? If yes, kindly provide the same?

Answer:  No, I get the message "You don't currently have permission to access this folder".

Here are the 2 screen shots you asked for:

Hope this helps.

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Several users from our organizations saw this exact behavior this morning.  In fact our antivirus also identified the newly populated drive and scanned it.  I took a look at the contents of it, this can be done via an Admin CMD prompt.  There exists a BCD folder containing Boot and Recovery directories.  Boot contains language definitions and bootmgr.efi, memtest.efi, boot.stl, and bg-BG.  Recovery has the BCD recovery file.  This really looks to be a change done by Microsoft in one of the most recent updates which adjusted this volume.  This is supposed to happen behind the scenes from what I can tell.  A reboot will resolve the issue and re-hide the volume.  However it would be interesting to get an official response from Microsoft with an explanation or comment on the particular update that impacted this.  

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I had the same issue just now the EFI System Partition or ESP which controls the UEFI or boot (formatted physical partition from where the UEFI firmware launches...) showed up as a drive with a letter and a the name ESP is was locked down and I had not noticed it until Edge crashed and I was looking for fix. Edge often causes my OS not to boot properly so that the start bar and task bar do not work when it does not freely load. I have to jump start my computer after a reboot reset or shutdown often by clicking on a shortcut for Edge. I also had to make the shortcut on the desktop as the Edge shortcut on the task bar leaves only blank space when this is happening.

so since everything was mostly inaccessible including the proper restart button on the start bar I did a hard shutdown and reboot. Just like everyone is reporting my ESP or EFI System Partition that had a drive letter disappeared also windows did a minor update not the full anniversary update which seems to crash my computer even harder with above mentioned Edge issue. That is to say I have tried the anniversary update twice and been forced to roll it back twice due to the Edge error being worse and never resolving this problem so that I could have an active Start or task bar.

I did not on this first restart after the hard shutdown that the Edge error did not happen this time. I hope for more stable boots in the future although in the past I have gotten random stabile boots even thought problem will re-persist later.

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http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/08/10/microsoft_secure_boot_ms16_100/
It possible that this is a effect of the above mentioned security hole update.

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I had exactly the same problem after re-installing Win 10 Home. EFI partition kept up showing up as G: Drive and none of the tricks I found through Google worked. I was able to remove the drive letter with diskpart, but after reboot it came back. Microsoft Support solved the case for me and I want to document the solution here to help others.

1. Open Windows Powershell or Command line as Administrator

Start -> Powershell -> Runs as Administrator

2. Open Diskpart

diskpart

3. Identify the EFI partition showing up in Explorer

list volume

4. Select the EFI partition (Replace 'X' with the correct drive letter):

select volume X

5. Remove the EFI partition's drive letter (Replace 'X' with the correct drive letter):

remove letter=X       

6. Exit Diskpart

exit

7. Open RegEdit

Start -> Type "regedit"

8. Find the right key/folder

Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\MountedDevices

9. If the EFI partitions drive letter is still in registry, delete the value.

For example: \DosDevices\X:

10. Close RegEdit and reboot.

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Worked like a charm.

I knew the diskpart section, however the extra step using RegEdit did solved my issue that the drive reappear after a reboot.

Thx again!!!

Mauricio

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Last updated August 8, 2020 Views 19,763 Applies to: