As I am not entirely sure why you could not find a solution using DISKPART, I will attempt to inform you on the process. Windows 7 hides inactive partitions of a disk, especially when not formatted to any particular FileSystem such as FAT32 and NTFS; in order to find our unallocated space, we RUN CMD(Command Prompt) - DISKPART - LIST DISK
. LIST DISK
will give us a list of all the disks and their respective properties, such as the size on the disk, amount of available free space, and weather the disk uses the Master Boot Record or GUID Partition Table. When marked with an asterisk, it has focus.
When we find which disk we want to focus upon, in our case that is the one with our extra inactive unallocated space, we will SELECT that disk. SELECT DISK
will select the disk and shift focus to it. (Duh!)
If the space I want to partition and format is located on Disk 0, then I must SELECT Disk 0
. "Disk 0 is now the selected disk."
In my case, I have 465gb on DISK 0 with 400gb of free unallocated space (no FileSystem applied), so we'll have to partition some of that space into another drive with a FileSystem attached (FAT/FAT32, NTFS) before we can access it. To do that we will use CREATE PARTITION
You can create an EFI, Extended, logical, MSR, or a Primary partition; These all have different uses. Primary partitions are used for Operating System installations, so if you want to install something like UBUNTU/Linux then theoretically we would want to use that one; However we're trying to make a drive that we can store our music, pictures, game downloads, and other miscellaneous crap on; so we'll be using a LOGICAL PARTITION
However, we must first CREATE AN Extended partition with which our Logical partitions will be located upon. The number of Logical partitions upon an Extended partition is limited only upon how much memory the Extended partition holds, ergo multiple logical partitions. A HDD may have only one Extended Partition. CREATE PARTITION EXTENDED PARTITION SIZE=#
In my case # = 400000 (390.625 gigabytes roughly). To check that said partition has been created
, we use LIST PARTITION
(our focus still being on Disk 0, otherwise it will display partitions associated with whichever Disk # we're focused upon, or none at all). I see my 2 Primary Partitions (Windows 7 automatically creates a 100mb Partition on installation, so there's two
), and a third one listed as * Partition 0 - Extended - 390GB - Offset 65GB
Notice the asterisk?, that's good it means we have focus upon that partition and we can now create a logical partition. Now, I don't want to use up the whole extended partition on just one logical partition because I might want to add or extend a drive in the future, so I'll add one with a size of 200GB. CREATE PARTITION LOGICAL SIZE=#
Where # is the amount of space in megabytes, in my case it's 204800 (should come out to 200gb exactly, by conversion). There are more options that can be displayed using HELP PARTITION LOGICAL if you need something more definitive. "DiskPart succeeded in creating the specified partition."
Awesome, just to take a look at it now, we'll do the following. LIST PARTITION
DISKPART> LIST PARTITION
Partition ### Type Size Offset
------------- ---------------- ------- -------
Partition 1 Primary 100 MB 1024 KB
Partition 2 Primary 65 GB 101 MB
Partition 0 Extended 390 GB 65 GB
* Partition 3 Logical 200 GB 65 GB
Ok, so we see here that it worked, but just out of curosity, what would LIST VOLUME show?. LIST VOLUME
DISKPART> LIST VOLUME
Volume ### Ltr Label Fs Type Size Status Info
---------- --- ----------- ----- ---------- ------- --------- --------
Volume 0 D Kaspersky P CDFS DVD-ROM 251 MB Healthy
Volume 1 System Rese NTFS Partition 100 MB Healthy System
Volume 2 C NTFS Partition 65 GB Healthy Boot
* Volume 3 RAW Partition 200 GB Healthy
Windows 7 doesn't display the Extended Partition, this is supposedly due to said partitions purpose of simply being a tool to create Logical Partitions, and as such if LIST DISK is used you will see only the amount of free space available upon the logical partition; The space left over upon the Extended Partition being unidentified or hidden.
The fact that it was shown before as 400gb Free under LIST DISK was due to it not being under an Extended Partition, so even though you can't see the space left over upon the Extended Partition outside of using LIST PARTITION in DISKPART it doesn't necessarily mean you don't have extra space left to distribute: For this purpose LIST PARTITION seems to do just fine with informing us of that.
Now that we have our new Logical Partition created, theoretically speaking we must assign it a drive letter, and format it into NTFS, FAT32, or any other FileSystem.
We still have focus upon the Logical Partition which we just created, so now we'll use FORMAT
If this is used in the absence of other defining parameters then it will proceed to format the volume or partition that has focus (shown with an asterisk *) as the default Filesystem displayed by the FILESYSTEMS
command. (Mine being NTFS) This may take awhile so go have a smoke and coffee, or coerse your girl/man into having a quicky....
100 percent completed DiskPart successfully formatted the volume. Where before youre Partition would have been Identified as RAW under the Fs section in LIST VOLUME, now it is NTFS (or your respective default Filesystem type).
Unfortunately though, it still doesn't have a Drive Letter(Ltr) assigned to it, Therefore we must assign it one. To do this we'll be using ASSIGN
, which will assign a drive letter or mounted folder pathname to the volume of focus.
By using the ASSIGN command, you can change the drive letter associated with a removable drive. However, you may not assign drive letters to BOOT volumes or volumes that contain the paging file. In addition, you cannot assign a drive letter to an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) partition unless booted to Windows PE, or any GUID Partition Table (GPT) partition other than a basic data partition, an ESP partition or a recovery partition. ASSIGN
DiskPart successfully assigned the drive letter or mount point.
In this case, it has automatically assigned my Partition/Volume of focus a Drive Letter as (E: ). I can see that it has succeeded because Windows has prompted to open files in this drive through a pop-up menu, we can also see the drive if we open up Computer, under the Windows Logo (Start Menu).
So there we have it, using DiskPart we have successfully created a new Partition, formatted, and assigned a Drive letter to our previously unallocated free space.
Logical Drives are for Data
Primary Drives are for OS
A Logical Partition cannot be created without creating an Extended Partition first.
I am NotaMidget; I like Cougars, tea, and biscuits.