How to Fix Disk Management All Options Greyed Out on Windows

Stuck in Disk Management all options greyed out problem on Windows 7/8/10/11? How to fix it? This guide will help you to fix extend/shrink/format/delete greyed out in Disk Management with full solutions.

Dervish

By Dervish / Updated on March 26, 2024

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Disk Management is a system program on Windows developed by Microsoft, which allows you to perform advanced storage tasks, like creating a new partition, extending a volume, shrinking a partition, etc. However, Disk Management has some limitations to manage your hard drive: such as "Unable to format drive larger than 32GB", "Mark partition as active gray", etc. You may even meet the disk management all options greyed out problems.

Why is format greyed out in Disk Management? How do I unlock Disk Management? After analyzing a large number of user posts, we have summarized some common error messages and provided corresponding solutions. Let's see how we can solve the problem when facing different disk management options grayed out.

Why Disk Management All Options Greyed Out on Windows

There are some error messages you might encounter in Disk Management on Windows 7, 8, 10, 11 PC:

🥇"Extend Volume" greyed out No contiguous unallocated space behind the target partition.
🥈"Shrink Volume"  greyed out The target partition has no shrinkable space; the target partition is not an NTFS file system.
🥉"Format Volume" greyed out The target partition is the system partition; the target partition is corrupted or has bad sectors
🏅"Delete Volume" greyed out The target partition has logic on it; the target partition is the system partition

If you urgently need to deal with partition-related issues, we strongly recommend starting with the disk management alternative - AOMEI Partition Assistant. This tool completely inherits all the features of Disk Management and breaks through some of its limitations. It is especially suitable for newcomers.

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Disk Management options greyed out solutions

Next, I will describe the detail reason why the "Windows Disk Management greyed out" error happens and show you how to fix it easily and securely step by step.

▶ Error 1. Extend/Shrink volume is greyed out in Disk Management

Why extend volume option is greyed out? Sometimes, you need to extend a partition with an unallocated space/free space to fix low disk space problem on Windows 7/8/10/11. If the continuous unallocated space/free space is not behind the volume you want to operate, and you will be prompted by the Disk Management extend volume greyed out error on Windows 11/10/8/7; that is to say, you can only extend volume to the adjacent space in Disk Management ; or the partition you are going to operate is not NTFS partition when you find out the extend option greyed out in Disk Management. Because the Extend volume feature only works for a RAW or NTFS partition in Disk Management.

Why shrink volume option is greyed out? The shrink option will be greyed out if the selected partition does not have enough free space. Or the partition you operated is not NTFS file system. Because shrink volume is allowed to an NTFS partition in Disk Management. Thus, you could make sure you have enough contiguous free space to operate, or convert the partition to NTFS file system. You could delete some useless files uninstall the unnecessary program to free up space, or shrink other partitions to get a free space.

Extend Or Shrink Greyed Out

✦ Solution 1. Extend/Shrink volume with AOMEI Partition Assistant

This extend/shrink option greyed out issue in Disk Management will be fixed by the powerful third-party disk partitioning software, like AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard. It will overcome the limitations of Disk Management.

This freeware is a comprehensive tool for managing disk partitions. You could download the free disk partitioning software. AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard combines the Extend and shrink volume functions into the Resize Partition. You could enjoy it now to fix "Disk Management all options greyed out" problem.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
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The steps of extend/shrink volume are listed as follows:

1. Execute the program, choose the partition you want to spare free space from, choose Resize/Move Partition.

Shrink

2. Move the double-sided arrow to the left to locate the proper location and hit OK.

Leftdrag

3. Click Apply to repair Disk Management shrink option greyed out issue. Then you will get an unallocated space.

Apply Srhink

4. Now you could use Merge Partitions/Resize Partition (here is Merge Partitions) to extend the partition you wanted with the unallocated space:

Merge Partition

5. Choose the partition you want to extend and the unallocated space to merge, press OK.

Tick

6. Press Apply to fix Disk Management extend option greyed out problem.

Apply

★Tip:

AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional provides many amazing features like allocating free space, migrating OS to SSD, moving installed apps or folders to another drive, converting MBR to GPT without losing data, etc. For Windows Server users, you can enjoy all the features with AOMEI Partition Assistant Server on Windows server computers.

✦ Solution 2. Extend/Shrink volume with DiskPart

1. Type diskpart to open the diskpart command prompt at the search box which next to the start button.

2. Then type the commands to extend/shrink volume on Windows 7/8/10/11.

list disk
select disk 0 (the "0" is the disk where the partition allocated)
● list partition
select partition 3 (the "3" is the drive letter you want to extend/shrink)
extend/shrink

Diskpart Extend Volume

And you will extend/shrink volume successfully with Diskpart.

▶ Error 2. Format volume is greyed out

Why is format greyed out in Disk Management? : The partition you format is system partition; or the selected partition corrupted or there are bad sectors. If you format the system partition (typically the C drive) would not be successful due to the system files, pagefiles, etc. which are not allowed to be deleted on Windows 7/8/10/11.

However, you can use AOMEI Partition Assistant to fix Windows cannot format the system partition on this disk error. This tool is a perfect alternative to Disk Management and simplifies the steps of Diskpart. You can try the tool and perform formatting tasks with ease.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
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✦ Solution: Format hard drive partition by CMD

Click Start and type cmd > Right-click on cmd.exe and select Run as Administrator; then type the following commands and execute one by one:

● diskpart
● list disk
● select disk 1
● list partition 
● select partition 1
● format fs=ntfs quick

Diskpart Format Ntfs

▶ Error 3. Disk Management Delete volume greyed out

The reasons: Delete an extended partition that has logical on it, you may get the delete volume greyed out error message; Delete a system/boot partition will cause the delete volume greyed out error.

✦ Solution: You could delete the extended partition after removing the logical partition on it in Disk Management. For deleting system/boot partition, you could try to make bootable media and boot from it, then delete the system/boot volume under Windows PE with AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard. Remember that backup your hard drive before deleting system/boot partition to fix the Disk management delete option greyed out the issue.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

Boot your computer from the bootable media, then AOMEI Partition Assistant will automatically run on your Windows 7/8/10/11 PC, then Delete system/boot volume on your HDD.

Delete System Partition

Furthermore, the bad sector on your hard drive will deny you to extend/shrink/format/delete volume in Disk Management. Therefore, you should check the partition errors to make sure whether there is a bad sector or not. Now, you can refer to the below words to fix all options greyed out in the Disk Management problem.

1. Open AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard, and choose the hard disk you want to operate.

2. Click Test and choose Disk Surface Test.

Surface Test

3. Choose Start to check errors.

Verdict

After all of these solutions, you could have fixed Disk Management all options greyed out problem. As you can see, this is a powerful and market-leading disk partition manager. It has more highlights waiting to be unlocked by you than what is presented in this article.

Dervish
Dervish · Staff Editor
Dervish is an English editor of AOMEI Technology; He is delicated to offering users easy and effecitve solutions for issuses related to disks and partitoins. In his spare time, he enjoy wathcning films, playing footable, traveling and so on.