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How to Partition a Hard Disk

Speaking of drives named C :, D: etc, we're actually talking about partitions, sections of the physical drive. Each hard disk used has at least one partition. You can shrink this partition and create new ones from the extra space. This is useful if you are installing more than one operating system or you really want to separate programs and data.

First, however, you need to take some precautions.

Step 1: Create a full image backup of the entire drive if you do not already have one. Disasters happen. (See our tips for the best Windows backup software to get started.)

Step 2: Make sure you have enough space on the existing partition to create the new one. The following items may be useful to free up space:

You may also want to empty the Recycle Bin.

If you still do not have enough space, you can move files to an external drive. Once partitioning is complete, you can move it back to a new partition.

Step 3: Open the Windows Partitioner. Windows comes with a reasonably useful partitioning program. It will probably meet your needs, and if not, you will find out soon enough. To open, enter partition in the search bar, and then click Create and Format Disk Partitions . (In Windows 8, enter Partitions ̵

1; yes, you need the s .)

Step 4: Reduce the existing partition. Right-click on the partition and select Shrink Volume

. Then wait. It may take a while. Finally, you will be asked in a dialog box how much the partition should be resized. The default number is the maximum available.

This is the problem of disk management. If your current partition has 228 GB free, you should be able to downsize it by less than 228 GB. However, with Disk Management, you can not shrink it nearly as much. If you can not resize the partition with the program, go to the last paragraph.

Your drive may have 23 GB of free disk space, but Disk Management may only have 12 GB available. [19659012] Let's assume that you can use Disk Management to make the partition smaller enough. In this case, set the correct size, click the Shrink button, and follow the instructions.

Step 5: Create your new partition. When resizing is complete, right-click the unallocated physical disk space and select Simple New Volume.

Then follow the wizard instructions.

Click here to see the full picture.

Option: Use a third-party tool.

If Disk Management can not shrink the partition as much as you want, it's time to go with a third-party program. I recommend EASEUS Partition Master Free. It's simple and, as the name implies, it's free. And it can shrink your partition until there is almost no empty space left. However, when installing, select Custom installation to avoid installing additional unwanted programs.

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