Re: Expanding a Partition


R. C. White

Hi, Vasu.

Like Kevin's, your situation sounds ideal for Extending the volume. But -
Microsoft and I got me confused. ;^{ My prior comments need some

Sometimes I forget that I'm in the Win2K newsgroup. I've not used Win2K
since WinXP arrived, but I still read this group often. The two Windows
versions are so similar that most comments on one also apply to the other.
But the method I actually used to Extend my volumes in WinXP was not
available in Win2K.

In Win2K, you should be able to right-click on your Drive E: and choose
Extend from the context menu - after deleting Drives F: and G:, of course,
to create contiguous unallocated space following Drive E:. However, I don't
find Extend on the context menu in Disk Management in my WinXP, either,
although the Help file says it should be there. (I've retired Win2K; it's
still in the archive, but it's no longer installed so I can't boot it and
see what its menu - or its Help file - says.)

I actually used the DiskPart.exe command interpreter, which is much more
capable than the DiskPart command that is a part of the Recovery Console in
both Win2K and WinXP, but this was not added until WinXP. From the RC,
DiskPart can only Add or Delete partitions. DiskPart.exe, though, has about
20 functions, including Add, Break (mirror), Clean, Convert - and Extend.
This (DiskPart /extend) is the tool that I used to Extend my Drive D:.
(Since D: was - and is - my boot volume, I rebooted to a second copy of
WinXP on X: to extend D:.)

Instead of "expand", MS says to "extend" the volume. You can extend a
primary partition. You can extend a logical drive within an extended
partition if the extended partition is large enough; otherwise you must
extend the extended partition first. To reduce at least a little of the
confusion, I try to remember to say "volume" instead of "partition" or
"drive" when I'm talking about either a primary partition or a logical

DiskPart /Extend worked beautifully - and FAST! I didn't time it, but it
sure didn't take long - and didn't lose or damage any files. (But, of
course, a backup is never a bad idea.)

I'm not sure where this leaves you, Vasu. We haven't heard from Kevin as to
whether he succeeded in extending his partition. Please post back, either
with a report of success or failure, or with questions for further





You can only do this with a third party tool eg Partition Magic
You are running low on space on C because you have installed your apps to C.
When installing an app. you should use the Custom Install method and install
to the drive of your choice.
You can move the My Documents folder to a different drive



R. C. White

Hi, Chris.

Disk Management is built into Win2K (and WinXP). Using that, you can delete
partitions and create new ones in their place. And Diskpart.exe has an
"extend" function that will expand a partition into contiguous unpartitioned
space. But nothing Microsoft sells will shrink an existing partition. And
neither Disk Management nor Diskpart /extend works for the System Partition
or Boot Volume. :>(

So that leaves you with two options. You can either:

1. Invest your time: Backup; repartition and reformat; restore, or

2. Invest your money: Partition Magic or something similar.

There are other possibilities, but they are not projects that "a total Noob"
(your word, not mine) would want to tackle. For example, you could
temporarily swap your HDs and put a parallel install on the 160 GB. Then
boot into that so that your 80 GB drive's partition is no longer your System
or Boot volume. Copy the contents of E: to the 160 GB HD temporarily (or
permanently?). Then use Disk Management to delete E: and Diskpart /extend
to make C: use some or all of that freed space. Finally, reverse the HD

In addition to moving My Documents, as DL suggested, you should also put
your paging file onto the second physical HD. This might free up 1.5 GB of
disk space on C: if you have 1 GB of RAM and are using Win2K's default
settings. You should empty your Recycle Bin, of course, and set IE to clear
your TIF cache each time you exit the browser. These are little things, but
they might solve your immediate problem long enough to let you find a more
permanent solution.

The real key, as DL said, is to not let apps install themselves into your
Drive C:. Your 14.5 GB should be more than enough. My first Win2K
partition was only 2 GB; this was cramped but served me for a year or two.
Then I extended that partition to 8 GB and it comfortably handled Win2K and
then WinXP for about 4 years. Just last month, I got a new HD and allocated
20 GB, since I once again "have more disk space than I'll ever need". ;^}


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