How to shrink partitions?

This document will explain the steps to shrink partitions. Shrinking can be done in two ways,

  • Using Windows interface
  • Using command line interface

Important Note:

Following points are to be noted before shrinking partitions,

  • You must be a member of Backup Operators or Administrators group, at minimum, to complete these steps.
  • You can only shrink basic volumes that have no file system or that use the NTFS file system.
  • You cannot shrink system hidden or internal partitions.
  • Shrinking is done based on Windows policy, hence the partitions cannot be shrunk beyond the limit.  

Using Windows Interface

To shrink a basic volume partition using windows interface, follow the steps given below,

  1. Run diskmgmt.msc and open disk manager.
  2. You will be able to view the available partition volumes now. Right-click the basic volume that you want to shrink.
  3. Click Shrink Volume and follow the on screen instructions to complete the shrinking process.

Using a Command line interface:

To shrink a basic volume using a command line interface follow the steps given below,

  1. Open a command prompt and run command diskpart.
  2. At the DISKPART prompt, type list volume. Decide on the number of the simple volumes you want to shrink.
  3. Now type select volume <volumenumber>. This will select the simple volume's volume number you want to shrink.
  4. Type shrink [desired=<desiredsize>] [minimum=<minimumsize>]. This will shrink the selected volume to desired size in megabytes (MB) or to minimum size if desired size is too large.