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Why Can't Extend a Primary Volume Size and How to Solve It

  • Once a primary volume is running out of space, to extend the very volume is the best solution, and Windows Disk Management tool sometimes can help do this. Nevertheless, many users have encountered the situation where they can't extend a primary volume size. Here we mainly introduce the following 5 reasons:

    1.There is no such function in Windows Disk Management. Windows operating systems released before Windows Vista do not include the feature "Extend Volume".
    2.The primary volume we want to extend is formatted with FAT. Microsoft says "Extend Volume" only works to NTFS partition and RAW partition.
    3.There is no contiguous unallocated space.
    4.Contiguous unallocated space is located before the target primary volume.
    5.Primary volume is just with free space rather than unallocated space on the right side. In Disk Management, free space can only used to extend logical volume while unallocated space just for primary partition.

    Under the above 5 situations we can't extend a primary volume size in Disk Management, but there is a good solution, namely using free third party partition manager. If users fear of downloading the program which is unsafe, try using MiniTool Partition Wizard.

    The recommended free partition manager is capable of extending both FAT partition and NTFS partition even if there is no contiguous unallocated space or free space. Next, we will briefly introduce how to increase primary volume size with this partitioning tool.

    How to Extend a Primary Volume Size in MiniTool Partition Wizard

    Firstly, launch the free partition manager to get its main interface:

    minitool partition wizard main interface

    Then, select the target primary volume and choose "Extend Partition".

    extend primary volume size borrow free space

    Next, take free space from other partitions to extend the target one and drag sliding button to decide how much to take. Then, click "OK" to get the window below:

    extend primary volume size apply change

    At last, apply changes by clicking "Apply" button.

    Now, we successfully increase primary partition size by borrowing free space from other partitions. However, if users want to extend the target volume to a non-contiguous unallocated or free space, there is another solution. See Extend Primary Partition Windows 7. If you also can't extend a primary volume size in Windows, try this free partition manager.