BitLocker in Windows 10

Bitlocker is not such an essential tool for most users, but a very powerful one to secure your data with a confidential password. It helps add an extra layer of security to your device, which can be an internal hard drive partition, a volume or an external HDD, or any removable storage drives. It's of great importance to turn on BitLocker protection in companies, or the workplace that connected to public networks! However, some of you may think it not necessary when you work at home and store data on your personal computer. Will you be able to disable BitLocker in Windows 10 once it's already on?

bitlocker windows 10

***Note that BitLocker is not available on Windows 10 Home edition. It's a device encryption feature built in Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise and Education.

***Note that BitLocker is designed to protect data by providing encryption for entire volumes. To encrypt only files or folders on your computer, you shall find a file encryption program.

How to Disable BitLocker Encryption on A Single Partition (6 Ways)

Windows 10 allows you to turn off the BitLocker and on a drive in many places, and the following paths are all effective to reach:

  1. 1. Control Panel
  2. 2. Settings
  3. 3. Command Prompt
  4. 4. PowerShell
  5. 5. Group Policy Editor
  6. 6. Windows Services

Way 1. Turn off BitLocker via Windows 10 Control Panel

Step 1. Here use the most direct way to open Control Panel in Windows 10: Press Windows + R keys and type control/control panel in the Run box and hit OK. 

open control panel in run

Step 2. Click BitLocker Drive Encryption to open a new window.

disable bitlocker in control panel step 1

Step 3. There you will see all the drive partitions. Find the target partition where displays (X: BitLocker on) and click "Turn off BitLocker" by expanding the down-arrow area. 

disable bitlocker in control panel step 2

Way 2. Turn off BitLocker via Windows 10 Settings

Step 1. Press Windows + I keys to open the Windows 10 Settings window.

Step 2. Click the System option.

open system in windows 10 settings

Step 3. Go on with the About option at the bottom on the left and then BitLocker settings on the right.

open bitlocker in settings

Step 4. This will open the same [BitLocker Drive Encryption] window, so follow the same procedure in #Way 1# to choose an encrypted drive to unlock it.

Way 3. Turn off BitLocker via Windows 10 Command Prompt

Anyway, the manual solution provided in the Windows 10 Control Panel and Settings does the same to help you suspend the BitLocker protection on a hard drive. For those who are used to tackling issues in Windows Command Prompt, we also provide you with a guide.

Step 1. Press Windows +X keys and click Command Prompt (Admin) from the menu.

open command prompt admin

Step 2. Enter the below command line and hit Enter. The X: refers to your own drive that is currently locked by BitLocker. So, replace X with the correct drive letter of yours.

manage-bde -off X:

Way 4. Turn off BitLocker via Windows 10 PowerShell

It's another command method to remove the BitLocker protection from your drive. Still, for people who are not familiar with the command thing, the former two ways are good to go.

Step 1. Type powershell in Windows Search (Windows + S). Right-click on the result and select Run as administrator.

start powershell in windows 10

Step 2. Enter the below command line and hit Enter. X: represents a drive letter under BitLocker encryption. So, replace it with your own. Do not omit the quotation mark.

Disable-BitLocker -MountPoint "X:"

Step 3. (Optional) If it's to turn off BitLocker for multiple drives on your computer, you need to perform different command lines each by each:

$BLV = Get-BitLockerVolume
Disable-BitLocker -MountPoint $BLV

Way 5. Turn off BitLocker via Windows 10 Local Group Policy Editor

Though Windows Local Group Policy Editor is an option to manage BitLocker drives, it's the most complicated method compared with the other four we gave to you. In spite of the fact, we still feel responsible to offer all the possible solutions including the last one here.

Step 1. Type group policy in Windows Search (Windows + S). If this is not a valid solution for you, open it in the Run box should be the easiest and quickest for everyone: Press Windows + R and type gpedit.msc in the Run box and hit Enter.

open group policy in run

Step 2. After the Local Group Policy Editor is open, strictly follow the path to complete the whole process to disable BitLocker:

  • Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components – > BitLocker Drive Encryption -> Fixed Data Drives
  • Stay here and then select the Deny write access to fixed drives not protected by BitLocker option and double click on it

disable bitlocker in group policy step 1

  • Next, click either Not Configured or Disabled. Both are options to remove the BitLocker protection on the drive. Click Apply and OK to save changes.

disable bitlocker in group policy step 2

Way 6. Turn off BitLocker via Windows Services

Windows Services are in charge of turning on or off all the services in Windows, including the BitLocker service. Here's how to disable BitLocker service permanently from the Services window.

Step 1. Press Windows + R keys and type services.msc in the Run box and hit Enter.

open services in run

Step 2. Under the Name tab, locate and double click on the BitLocker Drive Encryption Service option.

disable bitlocker in services step 1

Step 3. Select Disabled from the Startup type lists and click Apply and then OK to save changes.

disable bitlocker in services step 2

Bonus Tip#1: How to Recover Data from BitLocker Encrypted Hard Drive

BitLocker doubles the data protection on a hard drive, however, it cannot resist the outside damage that might remove or corrupt the encrypted data! The hard drive that is locked by a password is also likely to infect a virus or experience common hard drive problems like bad sectors, RAW file system, or unrecognized by a computer. In front of all the foreseen disasters, it's always the data that matters!

Is there any EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard we can adopt once the BitLocker encrypted hard drive had some issues? EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard can help. It fully supports encrypted data recovery from BitLocker protected hard drives, external HDDs and USB flash drives. 

 Download for Win Recovery Rate 99.7%
 Download for Mac Trustpilot Rating 4.7

Step 1. Choose the encrypted drive to scan

Launch EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard and you will see the BitLocker encrypted drive displayed there.

Select the bitlocker drive to scan

When you click on the encrypted partition, a pop-up window will remind you to enter a password to unlock it. Input the key and click the "Search for Lost Data" button to look for lost files.

Note: If you forget the key, you can use "Try Automatically Decrypt", which may help you decrypt the drive. But if it failed, this program can't scan the drive.

Decrypt the drive with password

Step 2. Select and preview scanned files

The software will start a quick scan for deleted files and perform advanced scan for more lost files. When the process completes, you can apply the "Filter" feature or use the search feature to find the lost files in a short time.

scan the drive for lost drive

Step 3. Recover lost files from BitLocker encrypted hard drive

After previewing the file, click the "Recover" button to restore deleted or lost files from BitLocker encrypted partition on Windows. You can choose a cloud storage, such as OneDrive, Google Drive, etc., and click "Save" to save your recovered files.

restore and save lost data

Bonus Tip #2. How to Manage BitLocker Partition by Resize/Move

At times, you may want a bigger BitLocker drive partition to store large multimedia files, and EaseUS Partition Master can facilitate the job by adding free space from other Partitions to the BitLocker one!

Step 1. Click "Partition Manager", select the Bitlocker partition and choose the "Unlock" option. Then, enter your password to unlock Bitlocker.

resize Bitlocker partition - Step 1

Step 2. Right-click the Bitlocker partition and select the "Resize/Move" option.

resize Bitlocker partition - Step 2

Step 3. Shrink or extend your Bitlocker by dragging your mouse towards the unallocated space

resize Bitlocker partition - Step 3

Step 4. Click Execute Operation and the "Apply" button to start partitioning or resizing the Bitlocker drive.

resize Bitlocker partition - Step 4

Learn More: Does BitLocker Slow Down SSD? Yes, up to 45%.

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Updated by Tracy King

Tracy became a member of the EaseUS content team in 2013. Being a technical writer for over 10 years, she is enthusiastic about sharing tips to assist readers in resolving complex issues in disk management, file transfer, PC & Mac performance optimization, etc., like an expert.

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Approved by Evan Galasso

Evan Galasso is a digital forensics and data recovery engineer with over 10 years of experience in the field. He presents opinions on the current state of storage media, reverse engineering of storage systems and firmware, and electro-mechanical systems of SSDs and HDDs.

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