# API Mediation Layer as a standalone component
As a Zowe user, follow the procedure in this article to start the API Mediation Layer independently of other Zowe components. By default, the Gateway, Zowe System Services, and Virtual Desktop start when Zowe runs. To limit consumed resources when the Virtual Desktop or Zowe System Services are not required, it is possible to specify which components start in the context of Zowe. No change is required during the installation process to support this setup.
Once Zowe is installed, use the following procedure to limit which components start.
Follow these steps:
- Open the file
<Zowe instance directory>/instance.env.
- Find the property
- Restart Zowe&trade.
To learn more about the related section of the environment file, see Creating and configuring the Zowe instance directory. We recommend you open this page in a new tab.