By Emily / Last Updated November 4, 2022

What is Disk Management in Windows Server 2008 (R2)?

Disk Management is a built-in program of Windows Server 2008. In fact, almost all Windows operating system has a Disk Management program, except that some functions are different. And next version is always more powerful than last version. In short, Windows Server 2008 Disk Management is used for disk or partition related tasks. It supports the following basic functions:

▸Format partition
▸Create and delete partition
▸Extend and shrink partition
▸Set partition as active
Convert between dynamic and basic disk
▸Create a number of specialty volumes including simple, spanned, striped, mirrored, and RAID-5 volumes
▸Create/Delete partitions on dynamic disks
▸Assign or change drive letters for partitions
▸View the property of all the disks of the system.

How to open Disk Management in Windows Server 2008 (R2)?

To use Disk Management to control your disk partition in Windows Server 2008 or 2008 R2, you should learn how to open or access the Disk Management. Here we list 4 methods for your references.

Method 1. Open Server 2008 (R2) Disk Management via the Control Panel

1. Click “Start” button on the right bottom and select “Control Panel”.

Open Dm Control Panel

2. In the window of Control Panel, please open the “Administrative Tools” program.

3. In the Administrative Tools window, select “Computer Management”, then Storage ->” Disk Management”.

Method 2. Access Disk Management using the start search box

1. Click “Start” button, type “diskmgmt.msc” in the Start Search box, press “Enter”.

2. Directly open the Disk Management.

Open Dm Search Box

Method 3. Open Server 2008 Disk Management with key [Win-Logo]+[R]

Start “Run” in Windows Server 2008 with keys [Win-Logo]+[R] and type in “diskmgmt.msc” and press “Enter” button to open the Disk Management in Windows Server 2008. A bit like Method 2.

Open Dm Hot Keys

Method 4. Launch Disk Management via cmd command

Please start the cmd.exe in administrative mode! And enter the command “diskmgmt.msc” to open the Disk Management in Windows Server 2008.

Oepn Dm Cmd

How to use Server 2008 (R2)Disk Management?

After opening the Windows Server 2008 Disk Management, you can make use of its basic functions to manage the disk partitions. To manage a specific disk, just right click it and choose the option such as “Format...”, “Shrink Volume”, “Extend Volume”, “Delete Volume”, “Change Drive Letter and Paths”, and more. You should note the Server 2008 Disk Management has added the “Shrink Volume” and “Extend Volume” options, which Server 2003 Disk Management does not offer.

However, those two new functions only work in some situations. First of all, they only support NTFS or RAW partition. Besides, “Shrink Volume” only allows you to shrink a partition from the right size, which means the unallocated space will be behind the shrunken partition while the “Extend Volume” only works when the aim partition is followed by a contiguous unallocated space. Briefly, you cannot simply shrink a partition and use the unallocated space to extend another partition.

Extend Volume Greyed Out 2008

For example, if you shrink drive D:, you will get unallocated space behind drive D:.You can use this unallocated space to extend drive D:, but you cannot use it to extend drive C: because drive D: is between drive C: and the unallocated space. That’s why most users find the Extend Volume greyed out in Windows Server 2008 Disk Management. Besides, it has a fatal weakness - it can’t move partition! Therefore, the only way to extend drive C: would is to delete drive D:, and of course, all data on drive D: will be lost.

How troublesome! I think most people are reluctant to delete the partition and data. If you insist to use Disk Management of Windows Server 2008, you have to back up your data before deleting. Besides, you may also find some of the options grayed out in Disk Management under some circumstances. If you want to a more flexible way to manage your disks and partitions, you can find an alternative.

Try Server 2008 Disk Management alternative (more powerful)

To make up the limitations of Disk Management Windows Server 2008, you can try AOMEI Partition Assistant Server Edition. It is an all-in-one server partition software and can be a great alternative. It can support Windows Server 2022/2019/2016/2012(R2)/2008(R2)/2003 as well. You can try the Demo version for a trial.

Try Demo Version Server 2003/2008/2012/2016/2019/2022
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Firstly, it allows you to shrink a partition from both sides so that the unallocated space can be in the either right or left side of the donor partition. Besides, it can add non-contiguous unallocated space to any partition on the same hard drive via the “Merge Partitions”. Moreover, it enables you to move partition and unallocated space. Therefore, whenever extend volume grayed out in Server Disk Management, you may use AOMEI Partition Assistant to extend partition.

Move Partition D

Most importantly, if there is no unallocated space available on the disk, you can use the “Allocate Free Space” feature, which can directly assign some free space from one partition to another in 3 steps. Quite easy and effective.

Allocate Free Space From D To C Drive


Here, we not only introduce some basic knowledge about Disk Management Windows Server 2008, but also share a great alternative in case that you cannot finish some disk partition managements through the Server Disk Management. Besides, the AOMEI Partition Assistant Server provides many other advanced functions, like Make Bootable CD, convert system disk from dynamic disk to basic disk, convert MBR to GPT without data loss or GPT to MBR without losing data, Windows to Go Creator, Migrate OS to SSD, etc.