Merge two partitions on Windows Server 2016

Updated on: November 16, 2019

This article introduces how to combine partitions in Windows Server 2016 without losing data. Merge Server 2016 partitions with Disk Management and NIUBI Partition Editor.

Sometimes you need to merge two partitions for Windows 2016 server, for example: when a partition is running out of disk space, by merging another drive, free space will be transferred to this partition. In some servers, the administrator created too many partitions in a disk, it causes difficulty to identify partition to locate files. This article introduces how to merge partitions in Windows Server 2016 with native and 3rd-party tools.

Merge partitions with Server 2016 Disk Management

Windows Server 2016 native Disk Management utility has no "Merge Volume" function, but you can combine two partitions with "Extend Volume" indirectly.

Steps to merge partitions in Windows Server 2016 Disk Management:

  1. Back up or transfer files in the partition that you want to remove to other place.
  2. Press Windows and X to together on the keyboard and then select Disk Management.
  3. Right click the drive that you want to remove (here is E:) and select Delete Volume.
    Delete Volume
  4. Right click the left contiguous partition (here is D:) and select Extend Volume.
    Extend Volume
  5. Extend Volume Wizard will be launched, simply click Next till Finish.
    Extend Volume Wizard

In a while, the Unallocated space that was deleted from drive E is merged into D.

Partitions merged

  • If you installed programs or any Windows services in drive D, do not delete it and merge into C drive.
  • Disk Management can only merge a partition into the left contiguous one, for example: merge E to D, or combine D to C.
  • With Disk Management, the left contiguous partition must be NTFS or RAW, Extend Volume is disabled for any other types of partitions.
  • With Disk Management, the 2 partitions must be the same Primary or Logical.

Combine 2 contiguous partitions with partition editor

With NIUBI Partition Editor, you can merge 2 contiguous partitions without limitation. Except system C drive, you can select any one as target partition, the 2 partitions could be NTFS or FAT32, Primary or Logical.

How to combine partitions in Windows Server 2016 with NIUBI:

  1. Download NIUBI Partition Editor, right click drive D or E and select Merge Volume.
    Merge Volume
  2. Click the check-box in front of both D: and E:, and then click the drop-down box on bottom to select destination drive. If you select D:, partition E will be merged into D.
    Select partitions
  3. Click OK and back to the main window, where you'll see that partition D and E are combined together. There is a pending operation "Merge volume E: to D:" added on bottom left. Click Apply on top left to execute, done.
    Partitions merged

Open partition D after merging complete, there is a new folder named as "E to D (date and time)" created. All files in partition E are moved to this folder automatically.

New folder

Watch the video how to merge partitions in Windows 2016 server:

Video guide

NIUBI Partition Editor is designed to work in its virtual mode, the operations you do won't be executed immediately, instead, they'll be listed as pending for preview. You may click Undo to cancel the unwanted operations or click Apply to take effect.

How to merge non-adjacent partitions

If you want to merge non contiguous partitions in Windows Server 2016, the native Disk Management is useless. Follow the steps below to combine with NIUBI:

  1. Back up or transfer all files in drive E to other place.
  2. Right click drive E and select Delete Volume.
  3. Right click drive D and select "Resize/Move Volume", drag the middle towards right in the pop-up window.
  4. Right click drive C and select "Resize/Move Volume" again, drag right border towards right to combine Unallocated space.
  5. Remember to click Apply to execute.

Watch the video how to combine non-adjacent partitions:

Video guide

Shortage of merging volumes

No matter which tool you use to merge partitions in Server 2016, one of the volumes will be removed. So, if you want to combine C and D drive, it is NOT a good idea. In most of the servers, programs and part of Windows services are running from partition D, they'll stop working after merging.

If you want to increase size of a partition, the best way is by shrinking other drive to get Unallocated space, then Operating System, programs, Windows services and anything else keeps the same with before.

Watch the video how to shrink and extend partitions:

Video guide

Besides shrinking, extending and merge partitions in Windows Server 2016, NIUBI Partition Editor helps move, copy, defrag, wipe, hide partition, scan bad sectors and much more.