By Bryce / Last Updated November 5, 2019

Shrink C drive in Windows Server 2008 (R2) with built-in tools

Unlike Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2008 (R2) offers you shrink partition function. When you to create more partitions on the system hard drive that has one partition: Partition C to make full use of disk, you can shrink C drive in Disk Management or Diskaprt utility without any efforts.

Way 1. Reduce C drive space via Server 2008(R2) Disk Management

To open Disk Management, press Windows + R simultaneously, type diskmgmt.msc and click OK. Then, follows steps given below:

1. Right-click the C drive, choose Shrink Volume among given options.

Shrink C Drive Windows Server 2008

2. It will calculate available shrink space. In the pop-up window, input the amount of space that you want to shirk by. Then, click Shrink button.

Size Shrink Server 2008

3. After a while, you can see there is unallocated space behind C drive. You can right-click it to create a new partition.

Unallcoated 2008

Way 2. Decrease C drive space via Server 2008 (R2) Diskpart utility

To access Diskpart, press Windows + R at the same time, input diskpart and press Enter. Then, run the following commands in order:

  • list disk

  • select disk n

  • “n” is the number of the disk that contains C drive that will be shrunk;

  • list partition

  • select partition m

  • “m” is the number of the volume that you want to shrink

  • shrink desired=size

Shrink Diskpart Server 2008

After you see Diskpart successfully shrunk the volume by:, type exit and press Enter to close this window.

No available shrink space on Windows Server 2008 (R2)

However, you can find that the size of available shrink space is much smaller than the actual unused space. For example, C drive has 922GB unused space and the available shrink space is only 233GB. And there are chances that the size of available shrink space is 0, even when C drive has plenty of free space, like the following screenshot:

No Available Shrink Space

The reason for "cannot shrink C drive" is as the message shows: You cannot shrink a volume beyond the point where any unmovable files are located.

A powerful partition tool for Windows Server 2008 (R2)

To settle out the problem, you can choose to disable unmovable files, such as system files, paging files, hibernation files, etc. And then boot your machine, try to shrink C drive again. However, it might be energy-wasting and time-consuming to disable these unmovable files.

Therefore, it’s time to employ a safe and reliable partition tool for Windows Server 2008 (R2). Here AOMEI Partition Assistant Server is my first option. It enables you to shrink C drive or other drives beyond the point where the unmovable files are located. That is to say, you don’t need to disable the unmovable files for shrinking a partition.

Now, install and run AOMEI Partition Assistant Server on your Windows Server 2008 (R2) based machine and check out the following guide.

Or you can download its demo version to have a try at first.

Step 1. In the main interface, locate C drive, right-click it and choose Resize Partition.

Resize C Drive

Step 2. Dragging the slider leftwards or change the value behind Partition Size to shrink partition C on Windows Server 2008 (R2). After that, click on the OK button.


Step 3. You can preview the result of shrink operation. If you are satisfied, click Apply and Proceed to commit it.


Further reading -- the unallocated space after partition C is shrunk

After you shrink C drive on Windows Server 2008 (R2), you’ll see an unallocated space next to it. With the unallocated space, you can create a new partition. If there are two or more partitions on the system hard drive and you want to extend one partition with the unallocated space, you can refer to the following steps:

Step 1. Run AOMEI Partition Assistant Server. Right-click the partition that you want to extend (here is partition D) and choose Merge Partitions.

Merge D With Unallocated

Step 2. You can merge partition D with the unallocated space to extend it, as the following screenshot.


Step 3. Click Apply and Proceed to execute the operation.



  • AOMEI Partition Assistant Server can work well not only with Windows Server 2008(R2) but with Windows 2019/2016/2012(R2), etc.

  • It features many functions, such as cloning Windows Server hard drive, recovering lost partition and so on.