Unallocated space is blank disk space and not belong to any partition, it can be used to create new or extend another volume. To get Unallocated space, you may either delete or shrink a volume with Windows native Disk Management tool. It sounds great, but you'll encounter many problem. For example, when system C drive is running out of space, you can easily get Unallocated space by shrinking D drive but cannot add this Unallocated space to C drive. To solve this problem, you have to move Unallocated space with third party software. This article introduces how to move Unallocated space in Windows 10/8/7 laptop/desktop with detailed steps.
Disk Management can't move Unallocated space to the left
Windows 10/8/7 Disk Management has Shrink Volume and Extend Volume functions to help you resize partition without losing data, but it cannot help you extend a volume by shrinking another one. Because to extend a partition with Disk Management, there must be contiguous Unallocated space on the right. You cannot get such required Unallocated space with Disk Management, because it can only make Unallocated space on the right when shrinking a partition.
For example, after shrinking D drive via Disk Management, Unallocated space is made on the right of D, it is nonadjacent to C drive and is on the left of another E drive. Therefore, Extend Volume is greyed out for both partitions.
If you want to merge Unallocated space to C drive, you must move Unallocated space next to C drive in advance. Because Disk Management cannot move Unallocated space or make Unallocated space on the left when shrinking partition, you have to run third party software. Better than other tools, NIUBI Partition Editor has unique 1-Second Rollback, Virtual Mode and Cancel-at-well technologies to protect system and data.
No matter you want to move Unallocated space next to C drive, move Unallocated space to the left/right or to the end of disk, it is very easy with NIUBI. Here I'll show you detailed steps one by one.
1. How to move Unallocated space next to C drive
Download NIUBI Partition Editor, you'll see all storage devices with partition structure and other information on the right. Available operations to selected disk or partition are listed on the left and by right clicking. There is 20GB Unallocated space on Disk 0 which is shrunk from D: drive.
To move Unallocated space next to C drive in Windows 10/8/7 computer, right click D: drive and select "Resize/Move Volume", drag the middle towards right in the pop-up window.
2. How to move Unallocated space to C drive
After moving Unallocated to the left, Extend Volume functions is enabled in Disk Management, you may either use this Windows native tool or NIUBI Partition Editor. To move Unallocated space to C drive in Windows 10/8/7 with NIUBI, right click C: drive and select "Resize/Move Volume" again, drag right border towards right in the pop-up window.
NIUBI works in virtual mode to avoid mistake, real disk partitions won't be modified until click Apply to confirm.
How to move Unallocated space to the left and add to C drive in Windows 10/8/7:
3. How to move Unallocated space to the right
Windows 10/8/7 Disk Management can only combine Unallocated space to the left adjacent partition. So, if you want to shrink D to expand the right partition E, it is impossible with Disk Management. But with NIUBI Partition Editor, you can easily extend E: drive without moving Unallocated space to the right side. To do this, right click E: and select "Resize/Move Volume", drag left border towards left in the pop-up window:
If you want to combine this Unallocated space to another partition F, you need to move Unallocated space to the right of E in advance. Similarly, right click E and select "Resize/Move Volume", drag the middle towards left in the pop-up window.
4. How to move Unallocated space to end of disk
As I show you above, if you want to merge Unallocated space to a contiguous partition, you just need to drag the border towards the other side in the pop-up window. If you wan to move Unallocated space location, simply run "Resize/Move Volume" for the contiguous partition and drag the middle in the pop-up window. If there are many partitions and you want to move Unallocated space to the end of disk, you can move the contiguous partition one by one.
Watch the video how to merge and move Unallocated space in Windows 10/8/7 computers:
5. How to move Unallocated space to another disk
In some computers, C drive is full but there is no other data volume or not enough free space on the same hard disk. Some people want to move Unallocated space from another disk. It is impossible, because the size of physical disk is fixed. With modern technology, it is not difficult to combine several physical hard disks to a larger virtual disk, but after that, Windows OS cannot identify this virtual storage.
To extend C drive in this situation, you have 2 options:
- Move a data partition to another disk, delete it to get Unallocated space and then add into C drive.
- Copy whole disk to a larger one and extend C drive with extra disk space.
Besides merging and moving Unallocated space in Windows 10/8/7/Vista/XP, NIUBI Partition Editor helps you do many other disk partition management operations such as merge, convert, copy, hide, defrag, wipe, scan bad sectors, etc.