This article introduces free Disk Management and best disk partition tool for Windows Server 2019, shrink, extend, convert and copy disk partitions easily.
Hard disk drive is an indispensable component to a server, no matter you use traditional mechanical disk, solid state drive (SSD) or any types of hardware RAID arrays. Before saving files to a disk, you should initialize disk, create and format partitions. After running this server for a period of time, you need to shrink a large volume to create new, expand a volume that is running out of space, copy and replace with larger disk, etc. Therefore, you need a reliable disk partition tool for Windows Server 2019 to help accomplish these tasks.
Server 2019 free Disk Management tool
The same with previous Server 2016, Windows Server 2019 has 2 native tools to help manage disk partition - Disk Management and diskpart. Disk Management (diskmgmt.msc) has graphical interface, it is able to create, delete, format partition, set partition Active, change drive letter and path. Diskpart is a command prompt tool, it can do the same thing although in a different way.
- How to shrink partition/volume with diskpart in Windows Server 2019
- How to extend partition/volume with diskpart in Windows Server 2019
Here I only introduce Disk Management, because it has graphical interface and easier to understand.
What does Server 2019 Disk Management do
To an allocated partition, the options include:
- New Spanned Volume
- New Striped Volume
- New Mirrored Volume
- New RAID-5 Volume
- Convert to Dynamic Disk
- Convert to GPT disk
To a disk, the options include:
- Open root directory in File Explorer
- Mark partition as Active
- Change drive letter and path
- Extend Volume
- Shrink Volume
- Add Mirror
- Delete partition
Disk Management advanced feature
Change partition size:
But because of some restrictions of both functions, Disk Management cannot extend a partition by shrinking another one. In addition, only NTFS partition can be resized.
Disk Management has the option to convert disk between MBR and GPT, convert disk between Basic and Dynamic.
However, it can only convert Basic disk to Dynamic without losing data. To convert Dynamic disk to Basic or convert between MBR and GPT, you must delete all partitions in the disk.
Manage dynamic volumes:
Server 2019 Disk Management is able to create and manage Simple, Mirrored, Striped, Spanned and RAID 5 dynamic volume.
Dynamic disk volumes consume much server resources, if one disk is damaged, all data in this volume will be lost. Hardware price is much cheaper now, so most of servers use hardware RAID arrays instead of dynamic volume.
The safest disk partition tool for Windows Server 2019
There are many disk partition software for Windows Server 2019 in the market, the GUI and functions are all similar. Different with data read-only program, disk partitioning software will modify the parameters of associated disk, partition and files. So there's potential system damage and data loss risk especially when you shrinking and extending partitions. You'd better make a backup first and run the safest tool.
Better than other partitioning software, NIUBI Partition Editor has advanced technologies to protect system and data:
- Virtual Mode - all operations will be listed as pending for preview, real disk partitions won't be modified until click Apply to confirm.
- Cancel-at-well - if you applied wrong operations, it doesn't matter, you can cancel the ongoing operations without losing data.
- 1 Second Rollback - if encounter any error while resizing partition, it automatically reverts server to original status in a flash. If it happens, your server could back online in a short time without modification or damage.
Download it and you'll see the main window with disk partition structure and other information on the right. Available operations to selected disk or partition are listed on the left and by right clicking. Unavailable operations are hidden automatically to keep interface clean.
Available operations to whole disk:
- Initialize brand new disk
- Change status to offline or online
- Set read-only attribute
- Wipe disk (cannot be recovered)
- Surface test
- View properties
- Clone disk to migrate data and OS
- Convert MBR disk to GPT
- Delete all partitions
- Cleanup disk
Available operations to a partition:
- Resize volume (shrink and extend)
- Move partition location
- Merge two adjacent volumes by 1 step
- Copy volume to Unallocated space
- Convert partition between Logical and Primary
- Convert NTFS to FAT32
- Change drive letter (such as D:)
- Change label (add or modify name of partition)
- Set as Active
- Check file system integrity
- Defrag to improve performance
- Hide from File Explorer
- Delete (files can be recovered)
- Format volume to use as new
- Wipe (erase data permanently)
- Surface test (scan bad sectors)
- Explore (view files/folders with directory)
- View properties
The fastest disk partition software for Server 2019
When selecting a disk partition tool for Windows Server 2019, there's another point you may ignore - speed. For example, when you shrinking a partition towards right, the start position of this partition will be changed, so all files in the partition will be moved to new locations. The more files in the partition, the longer time it costs. Similarly, when you copying disk partition, all files will be copied to another disk, too.
Thanks to the special file-moving algorithm, NIUBI Partition Editor is 30% to 300% faster than other tools. This is very important and helpful especially when some operations requires server rebooting to accomplish.