By Cherry / Last Updated September 9, 2019


Unable to add unallocated space to small partition

When partitions are not divided properly, you may encounter a problem that some partitions are running out of space, as time goes by. This will take bad effect on the use of the machine. For example, if C drive is full with applications and data, the running speed of your machine will reduce. In such condition, you need to change the size of partitions like extending volume on the hard drive or even to upgrade to larger disk if the capacity of your existing is too small.

It is lucky to own unallocated space on the hard drive when you need to extend the partition that is going to run out of space. You can extend volume for your small partition to the unallocated space, and Windows partition manage tool Disk Management can help you with its Extend Volume feature in Windows 7/8/10. Just open the tool, right click the partition which you want to extend, and then select the Extend Volume in the drop-menu. Unfortunately, you may find that the Extend Volume grayed out.

why cannot extend volume to unallocated space?

Many users may meet the problem that Extend Volume grayed out. 5 situations are concluded as follows:

1. "I have an unallocated space at the end of the hard drive, and I want to extend my system partition with it. However, when I try to use Extend Volume function of Disk Management tool to add the unallocated space to system partition, I found it is grayed out."

Grayed Option

You should know that the Disk Management tool Extend Volume requires there is unallocated space adjacent to the partition you want to extend, and it must at its right side. Otherwise, the Extend Volume would be grayed out.

2. "I have unallocated space, but I cannot extend volume to the blank space. The basic environment of my hard drive is liking the screenshot. I want to extend my E: drive with the unallocated space behind it, but the Extend Volume is grayed out".

Extend Volume Grayed Out

Although there is unallocated space at the right side and near to the E: drive, the Extend Volume option is still gray. Why? Because the logical partitions C: and E: drive are contained in an extended partition, which cannot be extended. If you insist to use the Disk Management to extend it, you have to delete the logical partition first, then delete the extended partition, so that you can create logical partitions again.

3. If the unallocated space is at the left of the target partition, you cannot use Disk Management to extend volume with it too.

4. Disk Management cannot extend volume to unallocated space if the target primary volume is formatted with FAT32. The Extend Volume only supports NTFS and RAW partition.

5. The Extend Volume function built-in Disk Management tool since Windows 7. Before Windows Vista, there is no function to extend volume in Disk Management.

When you extend volume to unallocated space failed with Disk Management, you can try to use other software to help you. Here we highly recommend you a good partition manager AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard, which can resize partition more flexibly.

Extend volume to unallocated space with partition manager software

When Disk Management cannot extend volume to unallocated space, the partition manager software - AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard (free) can make up. You can use it to extend volume in Windows 10/8/7, and Windows Vista/XP. It also has Server Edition (paid) specifically for Windows Server OS, including Windows Server 2016/2008/2006/2003/2000.

To extend volume for Windows operating system with this AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard, you need to download it at first. And then refer to the detailed steps for how to extend volume to unallocated space.

1. Install and launch it. You will see its main interface and the environment of your hard drive (an unallocated space at the end of the hard drive).

AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard

2. You can directly extend the contiguous E: drive with the unallocated space. Right click it, select Resize Partition. AOMEI Partition Assistant Resize Partitioncan extend volume to the adjacent unallocated space no matter it is at the right side or left side.

Resize E Partition

3. Then, drag the edge towards the blank space to extend the volume. After that, click Apply to submit the operations.

Drag to Right Side

If you want to extend an uncontiguous partition like C: drive to the unallocated space:

1. Right click it, select Merge Partition at the drop down menu. AOMEI Partition Assistant can merge partition with the unallocated space wherever it is located.

Merge Partitions

2. Then, tick the box before the unallocated space.

Merge C and Unallocated Space

3. After that, click Apply to execute it.

Apply Merge C and Unalloated Space

You can also use the Extend Partition Wizard to extend the target partition. No matter what, the partition manager AOMEI Partition Assistant provides more flexible ways to overcome the Extend Volume grayed out of Disk Management. What’s more, it is featured with many other useful functions like making conversion between NTFS and FAT32, wiping hard drive and so on.