How can I allocate free hard drive space after shrinking my C drive in Windows?

Anjani Kumar Gupta June 26, 2011

I shrank my C drive, which volume has been 278 GB, into a new drive of 100 GB. Now it is showing 100GB unallocated, but now I have a problem that I can’t allocate the volume. It is not going to be formatted. It shows an error. Help me, what should I do?

  1. Madhu
    May 29, 2012 at 5:41 am

    Dear Sir/ mam,

    I am using Windows7. I have 200GB of Free Space and 370 MB of unallocated Space out of 500 GB in my Hard Disk. Now i was trying to Extend Volume of 'C' from 40GB to 60GB but it is extending upto 370Mb only, eventough i have 200GB free space.

    I would like to know how to convert Hard Disk Free Spcae to Unallocated Space.

    • Bruce Epper
      May 30, 2012 at 11:57 pm

      Right-click on the partition marked as Free Space and select Delete Partition from the context menu. If it is adjacent to the other Unallocated Space, it should all become Unallocated Space. At this point, if the Unallocated Space is adjacent to your C partition, you should be able to extend it to consume as much of the Unallocated Space as you wish.

      May 31, 2012 at 4:56 pm

      Hello, as an alternative you can use the software provided in the link below. The advantage this software has as compared to the tools provided with windows is that you can shrink any partition at the beginning of it or at the end. It is easy to use and it would suit your purpose very well.

      You could use the software to shrink the 200 GB drive to the amount you need and then extend the C from 40 to 60. Best thing of all is that you can do it all in one step. After that, all you do is restart system. By the way, what version of windows 7 are you running? How many partitions are in your drive? Here is the link:

  2. Michael
    May 7, 2012 at 3:05 am

    In fact, the Windows 7 snap-in disk management has so many limitation on managing your hard disk, therefore, try use other professional partition software for windows 7 is much better. From you could find more detials information about best windows 7 partition software

  3. ramya santhanam
    May 2, 2012 at 5:30 am

    my new laptop is not yet drive allocated. how to do it??

  4. Raj_ma
    March 24, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    how will I alocate my drive D after Re partitioning what I deed is to increase my drve C I repartition Using Acronics , but when Im done repartioning my drive d is already alocate but there's an error " this drive is not formatted and asking me to format drive " but i can't because all of my documents and my archive is their.
    pls help me.... 

      March 26, 2012 at 6:27 am

       Hello, what you could do is move your documents and other stuff to another partition and then format the drive.  You could use an external drive or if you have a flashdrive with enough space, store it there.

  5. jimit26911
    March 24, 2012 at 10:22 am

    i formateed hdd in sony vaio laptop but i did some mistake so now its showing unllocate partion i try to create partition from disk mangement or one software also but its not done so how i create partition any one help me

      March 26, 2012 at 6:29 am

       Hello, can you give me more information about how you formatted the drive, your operating system and mistake did you make?

      • jimit26911
        March 26, 2012 at 8:39 am

        i have windows 7 32 bit so i want to 64 bit so i formatted in format process i format all drives so recovery drive & all drive formatted so now partition showing unalloacted so i want to make partition but i can't so what i do for this pls help me 

        • FIDELIS
          March 29, 2012 at 10:03 pm

           Hello, you should be able to do this from disk management interface.  What version 7 do you have?  If this does not work, try the following software:

          How many partitions does your system have? 

  6. It Dept Ang
    March 24, 2012 at 10:19 am

    hi formatted hdd in sony vaio laptop now its showing unlloacted partion i try create partition from one software & disk management from windows 7 but its not solve how i create that unllocate partion any one help me pls

  7. Don Fierro26
    March 23, 2012 at 7:08 am

    I have a question, I shrank my external HDD into three equal parts, one is NSTF format, another is FAT32, the third became unallocated and when I right click on it, won't give me the "new simple volume" option. How can I fix this?? Running Windows Vista Home Premium. And help would be great! Please email me at

      March 26, 2012 at 6:30 am

       Hello, did you use disk management to partition the harddrive into three partitions or a different software?

  8. Shagoralom
    March 12, 2012 at 1:23 pm

    this is virus problem . i setup my os again and setup antivirus then scan full operating system . there are lots of virus. thank you.

  9. Shagoralom
    March 5, 2012 at 3:39 pm

    i am using xp . when i shut down my laptop,it take restart. how can i solve my problem?

    • Tina
      March 6, 2012 at 7:01 pm

      Are you saying that your laptop boots back up when you try to shut down? How do you try to shut down?

      March 9, 2012 at 10:44 pm

       Hello, can you try the steps provided in the next link?  Let me know if that solves your problem:

  10. satya
    March 3, 2012 at 2:18 pm

     Expand satyamy question is how to recover 146 gb unallocated space on 320 gb hddplz tell me very  impand the error show on my desktop there is not enouugh space available on the disk(s) to complete this operation m using window7 ultimate

      March 5, 2012 at 2:21 pm

       Hello if the system is telling you there is not enough space, make sure to move big files like video, music or even pictures to an external drive.  Most times for windows to be able to create system restore, the drive will need at least 15 % of free space.  Move these files to make the 15% of free space and then just try the following:

      -- right click on C: drive
      -- select extend
      -- answer and follow instructions
      -- you should be able to use whole drive for system

  11. satya
    March 3, 2012 at 2:11 pm


    my question is how to recover 146 gb unallocated space on 320 gb hdd

    plz tell me very  imp

    thank u

  12. Shagoralom
    February 17, 2012 at 5:41 am

    in the windows server 2008 r2, what is the relationship between Active Directory domain name and DNS zone name ?

  13. Shagoralom
    February 15, 2012 at 4:30 am

    i am using windows7 . there is only one drive.that is c drive. how can i take space from c to make another partition? i do not want to restore my operating system. is it possible???

      February 15, 2012 at 7:49 am

      Hello, yes it is possible.  What version of windows 7 are you running?  There are differences for windows 7 starter.  Try the following:

      -- click on start
      -- right click on Computer
      -- click on manage and enter admin password
      -- in left hand side menu, click on disk management
      -- click on C: partition
      -- right click on it and select shrink volume
      -- enter and amount of space to shrink or use the default amount shown and then select shrink
      -- give process time to finish.  It should not take long
      -- once process is finished, it should leave a partition with unallocated space
      -- to create a new partition, click on unallocated space and right click on it
      -- select create a new simple volume and click on next
      -- type the amount in MB of the new partition you want to create.  If you want to use the whole amount you shrank, just leave the amount shown
      -- click on next
      -- select a letter for drive, or leave the letter chosen by system by default and click on next
      -- type a name for partition if you want and make sure that perform a quick format is check marked and click on next
      -- click on finish button

      Let me know how it goes.

      • Shagoralom
        March 12, 2012 at 1:26 pm

        thank you . it worked. i am sorry .because i am late..

        • Tina
          March 12, 2012 at 9:05 pm

          Better late than never. Thanks for the feedback! :)

        • FIDELIS
          March 13, 2012 at 7:27 pm

           Hello, I am glad your issue is fixed

      • jay joshi
        May 14, 2012 at 6:17 am

        i have 20 GB free space and i want to add it in C (System) drive ...
        i m unable to do it and tried a lot.
        So pls suggest me some way to perform it.

        • Bruce Epper
          May 14, 2012 at 8:18 am

          You can't do it with native tools unless the free space is immediately after the C drive. You can use tools such as Paragon Partition Manager or EaseUS Partition Manager to do the job by shifting all intervening partitions back so the free space immediately follows the C drive and it will then append that space to the desired drive.

  14. Mohdkashif3
    January 19, 2012 at 6:14 pm

    mam i am showing my disk management file through paint kindly help me in getting my disk space back 

      January 19, 2012 at 10:30 pm

      Hello, What is it that you want done?  Do you want to create a partition on free space?  Do you want to get rid of free space?

      First of all, you try expanding the C: partition to use the unallocated space next to it?  To do so try the following:

      -- in disk management page you show, click on C: partition
      -- right click on it and select extend volume
      -- it automatically should tell you the amount
      -- follow instructions until process is finished.

      If you want to create a new partition in free space, follow the next steps:

      -- click on partition showing free space
      -- right click on it
      -- click on format
      -- give partition an available letter, choose NTFS as your format and give partition a name if you like.  You just have to add the settings by answering to questions.
      -- let process finish

      If you want to get rid of free space, try the following:

      -- click on partition showing free space
      -- right click on it
      -- select delete volume
      -- volume space should turn to unallocated space
      -- click on D: partition
      -- right click on it and select extend partition
      -- follow steps as above

      Let me know if need more precise instructions

      • Mohdkashif3
        January 20, 2012 at 8:52 am

        no sir on right clicking on c extend volume option is not working i can not use this free space 
        actually on any of the disk it is not showing

        • FIDELIS
          January 20, 2012 at 9:02 am

          Hello, are you using windows 7 starter edition?  If you are, you will have to use a third party software like the following:

          Download the program in link, it is free.  With it you can fix your problem easily.  If you need instructions on how to use it, you can follow instruction on next link:


        • Mohdkashif3
          January 20, 2012 at 12:11 pm

          thanks sir ur suggestion really worked
          thanks again

        • FIDELIS
          January 20, 2012 at 12:26 pm

          I am glad your problem is solved

        • mayank
          April 26, 2012 at 3:38 pm

          how you solved your problem please tell me i m having same problem

        • mohd kashif
          April 28, 2012 at 6:52 am

          if u have downloaded the software given by Fidelis then u just have to use that software to get ur unallocated space back

  15. Zingani Mwale
    December 22, 2011 at 3:00 pm

    I've now got three partitions on my drive but i cant view the third partition pliz help me on this one. A.S.A.P

      December 22, 2011 at 10:56 pm

      Hello, can you explain more about your situation?  What operating system are you using?  Did you make the third partition yourself?  Do you think you can take a screen shot of your partitions?  To take a screen shot of your partitions do the following:

      -- click on start
      -- right click on computer/my computer
      -- select manage
      -- select disk management
      -- it should show you all the partitions available
      -- click on PrtScn key on keyboard
      -- now, open paint program in your computer
      -- press ctrl+v key together
      -- you should see a capture of your screen
      -- save the capture to your computer
      -- post a reply to my reply and add the capture screen by pressing the +Image at bottom of commenting box.  Check attached picture
      -- I'll take a look at it and let you know.

      • Idrees Akram
        January 1, 2012 at 1:58 pm

        Hi, Idrees here.

        I am encountering the same problem as Tina.
        I purchased new LAPTOP HP-CORE i5- window 7 basic, with three partitions C,D,E.
        C was of 280GB.
        D is of 16GB having window recovery file.
        E is of 4GB having HP Tools.

        Now my target is to shrink C and make new volume. I followed the same steps discussed by Tina. but finally when i was going to convert unallocated drive the message appears in the following way. Here i am sending print shots of the error msgs. kindly email me on this email, idrees.akramm@gmail:disqus 

        • Rahul
          January 5, 2012 at 11:52 am

          Only four partitions are allowed in windows home basic.If you want to create a new partition delete HP_tools and recovery partition.Make sure you create a back up of both.

        • FIDELIS
          January 5, 2012 at 9:07 pm

          Hello, it is not recommended deleting the recovery partition.  Getting rid of HP tools would fix the problem easily. 

        • Idrees Akramm
          January 6, 2012 at 5:46 pm

          I think this is not the solution of deleting partition. Kindly pay me the right and reasonable solution :)

        • Idrees Akram
          January 6, 2012 at 5:43 pm

          Rahul there is already 3 partitions. i want to shrink C and then there will be total 4 partition after making new volume. then why persisting the problem.....

        • FIDELIS
          January 20, 2012 at 12:29 pm

          Hello,like I said before that is the only solution for accomplishing what you want with starter edition.  Try using the free software in link below.  It has more options than disk management:

          For tutorials on how to use the software, try the next link:

          If you need any more specific help let me know. Check the posting for user Mohdkashif3 below and see that he solved it with this software.

  16. Jraa23
    August 21, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    have you got the solution for your problem
    I am also having the same problem
    what should i do now ??

    • Tina
      August 21, 2011 at 6:38 pm


      did you try the suggestions above? If none of them worked for you, I suggest to ask a new question and explain what you tried and why or how it failed (error messages etc.).

  17. Eoyugi
    July 22, 2011 at 2:59 pm

    hi i use Windows 7 Starter and i had followed your instructions step by step but am still getting an error: dynamic disks are not supported by this operating system or server configuration.Dymanic disks are not supported on clusters.What next?

  18. Tina
    June 29, 2011 at 4:36 pm


    was your problem with allocating the free space solved in the meantime? What was wrong? Please update us on how you fixed it or whether you need more help. Thank you!

  19. Anonymous
    June 26, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    Change, add, or remove a drive letter
    Right-click the partition or drive that you want to give a letter, and then click Change Drive Letter and Paths.

    Create and format a hard disk partition

    go to start >> run >> diskmgmt.mscright click the unpartitioned ( unallocated ) space and follow on-screen create a partitionRight-click the "Unallocated" disk from the list of hard drives installed on your computer and then click the "New Simple Volume" option from the menu.
    Click on the "Next" button in the Wizard that appears.
    Leave the default drive size and then click the "Next" button.
    Click the "Next" button in the "Format Partition" window. Wait for the computer to format your hard drive. This could take up to 20 minutes depending on the size of your drive

    hover the mouse pointer over this DISK and right click. It will ask if you want to activate or initialize this drive. Click "OK". Now move your mouse to the small area to right where it now states something like "100GB unallocated" and right click and it will lauch a new window with the PARTITION WIZARD. Follow the instructions using default settings and you drive will be ready to be used! Hope this helps all of us without a whole lot of computer savy

    Partition Find and mount

  20. Tina
    June 26, 2011 at 12:57 pm


    I don't quite understand your question.

    Are you trying to create a new partition / volume from the unallocated space?
    Or are you trying to add the free space to another existing partition / volume?

    Shouldn't it show 178GB unallocated space if you shrank C to 100GB?
    What size is C now?

    What are you trying to format? You cannot format unallocated space I think.
    What is the error it is showing, what does it say?

    Which version of Windows are you using?

    You might also want to look into these two links:
    How To Shrink & Extend Volumes Or Partitions in Windows 7
    How can I activate an unallocated volume on an external hard drive after shrinking one of the partitions?

    • Anjani Kumar Gupta
      June 26, 2011 at 2:11 pm

      No ma'am....actually i shrank c drive. I was trying to create a new drive of 100gb. Firstly i opened manage then disk management and i shrank c drive.
      Initially my c drive was of 278 gb. After creating a new volume of 100 gb it is now become of 178 gb.
      In disk management an unallocated drive is showing of 100gb.
      But it is not showimg in my computer.
      How will i allocate this?
      please help me ma'am......Thank u for your support

      • FIDELIS
        June 26, 2011 at 8:32 pm

        Hello, you will not be able to see it through Computer/My Computer until either it is formatted or it is converted to free space.  You will have to allocate the space using disk management.  Use disk management to create a new partition on your unallocated space.  Once unallocated space is formatted and partitioned, a drive letter will be provided and you would be able to see it on Computer/My Computer.  

        • Anjani Kumar Gupta
          June 27, 2011 at 8:08 am

          but it is not being formate.....when i formate it then it is showing a message that "if you will continue then your disk(s) will be changed into dynamic disk"
          when i click on the continue button then it shows a message that"your operating system is not supportable for dynamic disk"
          i am using window7.......thank u for your response

        • FIDELIS
          June 27, 2011 at 12:09 pm

          Hello, how many partitions are on your system?  Windows has a limit of four primary partitions, or 3 primary and an extended partitions where you can create as many as 128 logical volumes as long as there is enough space.  If you do not want that warning about dynamic disks to pop up, you will have to make sure there are only 4 partitions on your system.

    • Blochsabir
      January 18, 2012 at 10:06 am

      Tina Ma`m 
      i partition my hdd completely in window 7 but now my os failed...
      please regard me....

      • Tina
        January 19, 2012 at 9:54 pm


        what exactly did you do to your HDD? How did you partition it? Do you think that caused your Windows to fail? Any error messages or symptoms?

        For a fast and thorough answer, I recommend to ask a  new question.

      • mayank
        April 26, 2012 at 3:24 pm

        how can i delete the unallocated disc. i have sme problem but i cannot erase the unallocated disc whic has taken 100gb of space

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