Moving space between partitions

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A task-based, step-by-step guide that empowers you to use your disk space effectively with this book and ebook.

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by Curtis Gedak | January 2013 | Open Source

This article by Curtis Gedak, author of Manage Partitions with GParted How-to reveals how to migrate free disk space to where it is most needed. It can be frustrating to run out of free space in one partition (for example, C:) when another partition (for example, D:) has plenty. In this recipe we cover the steps to migrate free space from one partition to another.

(For more resources related to this topic, see here.)

Getting ready

Before performing this task, we highly recommend that you backup your data. This task involves moving the start of a partition boundary, which is a high risk activity.

How to do it...

  1. Select the partition with plenty of free space.

  2. Choose the Partition | Resize/Move menu option and a Resize/Move window is displayed.

  3. Click on the left-hand side of the partition and drag it to the right so that the free space is reduced by half.

  4. Click on Resize/Move to queue the operation.

  5. Click on OK to acknowledge the move partition warning

  6. Select the extended partition.

  7. Choose the Partition | Resize/Move menu option and a Resize/Move window is displayed.

  8. Click on the left-hand side of the partition and drag it to the right so that there is no space between the outer extended partition boundary and the inner logical partition boundary.

  9. Click on Resize/Move to queue the operation

  10. Select the partition that needs more free space:

  11. Choose the Partition | Resize/Move menu option and a Resize/Move window is displayed.

  12. Click on the right-hand side of the partition and drag it as far to the right as possible:

  13. Click Resize/Move to queue the operation:

    Notice the unallocated space between sda1 and sda2. This gap, which can be up to about 8 MiB, occurs due to having cylinder aligned and MiB aligned partitions on the same disk device. In this example, the sda1 partition was created with cylinder alignment to demonstrate this potential gap.

  14. Choose the Edit | Apply All Operations menu option to apply the queued operations, to disk.

  15. Click on Apply to apply operations to disk.

  16. Click on Close to close the apply operations to disk window.

How it works...

In order to add space to a partition, unallocated space must be available immediately adjacent to the partition. To free up this space, we use many of the recipes covered earlier.

First, we made unallocated space available by shrinking the logical partition where free space was available. Because the free space came from a logical partition inside an extended partition, and we needed to add the space to a primary partition, we had to edit three partitions to achieve the desired goal.

There's more...

If you resize or move a partition containing an NTFS file system, then you should reboot into Windows twice to permit Windows to perform file system consistency checks.

Growing or moving a partition

To grow or move a partition, unallocated space must be available adjacent to the partition:

  • When growing a logical partition, the unallocated space must be within the extended partition.

  • When growing a primary partition, the unallocated space must not be within the extended partition.

You can move unallocated space inside or outside of an extended partition by resizing the extended partition boundaries.

Summary

We saw how to migrate free disk space to where it is most needed. Modern disk drives can store vast amounts of information. To effectively use all of this space, you can partition disk drives into separate storage areas. These separate storage areas enable you to organize your data, improve system performance, and install and use many operating systems.

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Manage Partitions with GParted How-to [Instant] A task-based, step-by-step guide that empowers you to use your disk space effectively with this book and ebook.
Published: November 2012
eBook Price: £6.99
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About the Author :


Curtis Gedak

Curtis Gedak has managed the GParted project for the past 4 years, coordinating volunteer efforts and resources, managing releases, maintaining the website, developing new features, fixing bugs, and much more. For over 2 decades, Curtis developed a solid set of technical and management skills while working for a variety of companies in industries such as utilities, agriculture, and oil and gas. During this time he specialized in applying relational database technology, managing heterogeneous environments, and developing applications in a multitude of programming languages. With his strong interpersonal skills and sound technical ability he has been instrumental in the success of many projects. Curtis holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Alberta.

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