By Dervish / Last Updated April 13, 2021

What is simple volume and spanned volume?

A basic disk is our commonly used disk management method, but Windows Server provides a new disk management method, which upgrades the basic disk to a dynamic disk, which can manage multiple disk spaces and can also improve the performance and fault tolerance of the disk. Configure various disk arrays to increase disk capacity.

Dynamic disks are not used directly. They need to be divided into different types of volumes: simple volumes, spanned volumes, striped volumes, mirrored volumes, and RAID5 volumes. The following content will explain to you what is a simple volume and a spanned volume.

●Simple VolumeIt consists of unallocated space from a single disk. You can extend a simple volume to unallocated space on the same disk or additional disks. If a simple volume is extended across multiple disks, it will become a spanned volume.
●Spanned VolumeIt is made up of unallocated space from multiple disks. The volume size of each disk can be different. Spanned volume requires at least two disks but doesn’t provide fault tolerance, and you can use 32 disks at most.

Through the above description, you should have some understanding of simple volumes and spanned volumes. So if you want to expand the simple volume, you can extend a simple volume by adding unallocated space on the same disk or by adding unallocated space on another disk. Expand the simple volume in a second way, and your simple volume will become a spanned volume.

Next, I will teach you the easiest way to expand the simple volume.

How to extend simple volume with spanned volume easily?

I suggest you use the AOMEI Partition Assistant server to extend simple volumes. AOMEI Partition Assistant Server is a small tool with no bundled software. It contains a professional dynamic disk manager tool that can help you manage dynamic disks and volumes easily. You can follow the tutorial below. In order to better understand the operation, you need to open the AOMEI Partition Assistant Server and click "Dynamic Disk" to start this tool before that.

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Note: Our purpose is to extend the simple volume on disk 3, but if the unallocated space on another disk (disk 1) is added, the original volume and the newly added volume will be automatically converted to spanned volumes.

Then perform the following operations

Step 1. In the main window of the AOMEI Dynamic Disk Manager Server, we could get the local dynamic disk information like below.

Step 2. In our case, we want to extend I: (simple volume on Disk 3), if there is no unallocated space on every disk. What we can do next? We can shrink one volume which is large enough or deletes one unused volume on other disks. Right-click the empty L: volume on disk 1 and choose the “Delete Volume” option:


After 2nd step, we get the unallocated space on disk 1:


Step 3. In this step, we right-click I: simple volume and choose the “Resize/Move Volume” option to get the new operating Window, Drag the size you want to extend.


Step 4. For example, when dragging the expansion space to the maximum, we can preview the changes in advance. Change the simple volume to a spanned volume with unallocated space.


Step 5. The last step is to confirm the operation in the "View pending operations" box and select "Submit" on the toolbar. After waiting a few minutes and rebooting, extend the simple volume to the spanned volume is completed successfully.

PS:In addition to extending simple volumes to cross-volumes, the AOMEI Partition Assistant server can also help you migrate the operating system to SSD/HDD, convert MBR to GPT or convert GPT to MBR without losing data, erasing hard drives, Wipe partitions, etc.


Through the above steps, I believe you should know how to expand a simple volume to a spanned volume. Using AOMEI Partition Assistant Server will greatly reduce the difficulty of your operation. In addition to the AOMEI Partition Assistant sever, we also have the AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional, which is specially designed for enterprise users to manage dynamic disk storage environments to operate in Windows 7/8/Vista/XP/2000 (32-bit and 64-bit) to achieve the best performance. Please choose the version that suits you best according to your needs.