Can't expand any existing partitions in Win 7

Microstar / 790gx-g65
January 28, 2010 at 16:46:22
Specs: Windows 7 Ultimate, Phenom IIx2 550 4GB
I am running Windows 7 Ultimate 32 bit on a 500GB drive.
System partition is 31.25GB-NTFS
E- Primary partition = 58.63GB-NTFS
F- Primary partition, 143GB-NTFS
Unallocated = 232.88GB.

I can’t expand any of these partitions. The option is grayed out on all. Any ideas why? BTW, I do have Window Virtual PC installed with WinXP mode.


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#1
January 28, 2010 at 17:40:07
Boot in safe mode and try it.

Playing to the angels
Les Paul (1915-2009)


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#2
January 28, 2010 at 18:20:24
Tried safe mode, same results as in standard mode.

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#3
January 28, 2010 at 19:32:48
Where is the ~233GB unallocated "X" space situated in your partition alignment?

C; → E; → F; → X

C; → E; → X; → F

C; → X; → E; → F

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#4
January 28, 2010 at 21:22:19
Sabertooth

I thought it was created after the system partition but I can't say for sure. I don't know if I could check that at this point.

That said, that is why I mention I can't expand ANY of the existing partitions. The unallocated space must be next to one of them.

Forgot to mention that I have full administrative privileges but have also logged in as Administrator with no change.


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#5
January 28, 2010 at 21:45:36
You must have run into a non-contiguous unallocated space limitation & you would need to use a third party tool to accomplish what you're trying to do.

I would recommend the free Partition Master program from EASEUS. I've used it many times & never had a problem.

http://www.partition-tool.com/perso...

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#6
January 29, 2010 at 05:11:35
Sabertooth

I hear you but that makes no sense. The unallocated space has to be contiguous to one of the other partitions. There has to be another reason.

I am thinking it may have something to do with Virtual PC which is installed on the system partition and WinXP virtual mode, which is installed on the 58.63GB basic partition.


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#7
January 29, 2010 at 06:08:48
I can not say how reliable this idea is because it doesn't make sence to me but I am told that you may need to allocate that space first. Also I am seeing C, E, F, where or what is D? Is this the unallocated space?

Likely


I want to go like my grandfather did. Peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming at the top of my lungs like the passengers in his car.

(\__/)
(='.'=)
(")_(")


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#8
January 29, 2010 at 07:09:12
if you delete the other partitions except your C; drive (if possible) you should then have 1 unallocated space and then be able to resize at will,

i hate computers!
but cant help myself....


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#9
January 29, 2010 at 08:26:07
I can't do that because I have my programs installed to one of those partitions.

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#10
January 29, 2010 at 08:58:56
"I hear you but that makes no sense. The unallocated space has to be contiguous to one of the other partitions. There has to be another reason."

The non-contiguous unallocated space limitation is pretty cut & dried. I can only assume that you may be conflating what you think is going on here, when in fact, there's just one issue & all it is, is: Limitation.

I'm sure you are aware, the Management Console (MMC) snap-in from Disk Management is not a full-fledged partitioning tool. At any rate, there's the more flexible Diskpart Command-Line Utility, if you prefer to use that. But it shares the same non-contiguous unallocated space limitation & it is inherently riskier if it not used properly or if used by someone that's not comfortable with command-line tasks.

Back to the problem you are having, the problem is: you cannot extend a volume unless there's an unallocated block of space adjacent -- explicitly on the right -- to the volume you are trying to extend. In other words, you cannot extend a volume if there isn't any unallocated space immediately to the right of the said volume. You also, cannot do so, even if you do have unallocated space; if the unallocated space is immediately to the left of the volume you intend to extend.

The above explanation was the reason for my question in Response #3. And using this illustration as an example, while the C: volume can be extended, the D: volume cannot.

I guess the $64 grand question is: Where is the ~233GB unallocated space sitting?

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#11
January 29, 2010 at 09:08:10
Sabertooth

When first partitioning the hard drive I created the system partition ONLY and installed Windows 7 on it. Only after 7 was up and running did I create the other partitions. When doing that I created TWO additional basic primary partitions and left the 232GB unallocated.

Unless I misunderstand what you are saying the unallocated space must be to the right of one of the partition as it was the last space left on the drive.

Likely

I have tried to partition the unallocated space as a whole and then shrink partially only after failure to get things to work as described in the help files for 7.


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#12
January 29, 2010 at 12:20:08
Since I'm unaware of where this unallocated space is, I can't speculate on the specific volume that you can extend ... all that depends on your partition alignment.

What I'm alluding to is: The only volume that Windows will allow you to extend is the one that's immediately to the left of your unallocated block of space.

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#13
January 29, 2010 at 12:42:10
And I will repeat once more. The partitions and space I listed is all there is. So considering that, one of the formatted partitions MUST be in that position. I think there is either a bug in 7 or the fact that I have WinXP virtual mode installed has something to do with it.

I can live with things as they are but it bugs me that this version isn't working as it should. I may end up removing the virtual stuff just to see if that is the issue.

Thanks for trying to help. I was hoping the native utility would have a merge function. Leave it to MSoft to include a feature that isn't nearly as good as the third party competition.


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#14
January 29, 2010 at 15:38:38
OTH,

Can you post a screenshot of your Disk Management Console?

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#15
January 29, 2010 at 15:47:04
Sabertooth

I removed WinXP virtual mode and Windows virtual PC. I am now able to expand the 143GB partition only. This makes sense as it is evidently adjacent to the unallocated space. However. shrinking both of the formatted partitions other than the system disk still won't allow me to extend the system partition.

After removing the programs mentioned above and also a couple I tried to get working in Windows 7 I currently have about 25% free space on the system partition.


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#16
January 29, 2010 at 17:40:27
I would have thought xp mode would have been disabled in safe mode. Guess it still keeps a lock on the drive.

Playing to the angels
Les Paul (1915-2009)


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#17
January 29, 2010 at 18:04:16
Good deal OTH.

I'm not sure why you are unable to extend your system volume if you have contiguous unallocated disk space after the volume. Delete the formatted partition & try to extend it again.

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#18
January 29, 2010 at 18:08:54
I still can't expand the system partition though. If i eventually need to I guess i can use one of the third party programs.

I am disapointed in Virtual PC and WinXP virtual Mode. I have a scanner that came bundled with paperport, textbridge and a couple of other programs. The scanner and software worked perfectly under WinXP. I couldn't get it to work using WinXP virtual mode. Unfortunately the documentation is not very good. It isn't explained where exactly you are supposed to install the scanner drivers and software. Has to be while in the virtual mode because when in 7 you can't even get it to install. Message says the programs and not compatible with Windows 7 and won't allow you to proceed further. Well, I am off track here.


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#19
January 29, 2010 at 18:53:10
Scanner issues in XP Mode doesn't seem to be rampant or conclusive, while some have been unable to get their scanners going, other Windows 7 users seem to be able to install & use their equipment just fine.

Are you running the 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows 7? I know XP Mode
is 32-bit only, I was just wondering if you were trying to install 64-bit
drivers for the scanner as opposed to using 32-bit drivers.

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#20
January 29, 2010 at 21:48:29
Just for reference, I downloaded BootIt NG a while ago and while I did not end up using it for what I originally intended (trying to merge 2 partitions onto a larger disk...never mind) I did notice that it's graphic showed where allocated space was and allowed you to 'slide' partitions forward and back. There was an extensive manual to download, and I read much of it. Just info, the more the better.

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#21
March 6, 2010 at 14:12:07
An update for those that replied here.

I ended up using Easeus partition tool to re-size the partitions.

I did get the scanner working in WinXP Virtual mode, for a few days. Then it quit working. I discovered that the scanner won't work even under Windows 7 with the correct drivers from Xerox. The scanner locks up part way through the scan. This is when using fax and scan in Windows 7 with no other software.

The end result is that I installed WinXP home on a separate HD while the main HD was disconnected. I now use the BIOS boot selector to choose the drive to boot to (F11 at start up).

Thanks for the help anyway.


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