SBS 2011 resizing volumes

Posted on 2014-08-12
Last Modified: 2014-08-12
We have a server that is running low on the company data partition. However, we have another partition that is used for user data that has plenty of disk space. We would like to shrink the user partition (F:drive) and extend the company data partition (D;\drive). See attached screenshot.

Having never changed a partition size using the Disk Management MMC before, I am a little bit hesitant given that this is a production server supporting more than 40 users.

Can anyone advise if resizing partitions (not system partition) is a good/bad idea.
Question by:swan_solutions
    LVL 23

    Accepted Solution

    Adding diskspace to a partition is never a bad idea but are these virtual machines?
    You can safely add data to any partition. When using VMWare (example) just extend the VMDK file when the machine is shut down, start up the machine again and use Diskpart to extend the drive within windows (you need diskpart to add free space on a disk to a partition.

    shrinking a partition however is totally different cake. I would never ever ever suggest to shrink a system partition (not that are doing this but still :)) and to be honest i wouldn't suggest it for a data drive either. The problem is that you can't see where data is stored. So if you E.G. remove the last 20GB of a 100GB drive it could be that data is stored there and you might lose it.

    I'd suggest adding extra drivespace (if VMWare, this is quite easy) but don't just shrink a volume (my 2 cents).

    Author Comment

    Agree, I wasn't keen on shrinking an existing partition so have started moving data to the F:\drive to provide the required space on the D.

    Unfortunately, the server is not VM so it's not as simple as adding an extra partition.
    LVL 95

    Expert Comment

    by:Lee W, MVP
    First, you posted an empty word document.  
    Second, if you're trying to post a screenshot, just post the graphic, don't put it in a word document.  Further, "Embed" it so we can see it without explicitly downloading.

    Third, If the partitions are "next to" each other (with the one to shrink on the LEFT), then right click on the one you want to shrink in Disk Management and click Shrink Volume.  This will calculate what it can shrink and give you the option.  Then you can right click on the one you want to expand and click on Extend Volume.  Windows won't let you shrink if data is all over.  Windows won't let you expand either UNLESS the "empty" volume space is on the right.  *IF* the space configuration isn't able to expand, then you'd have to use third party tools to do this - THIS I DO NOT RECOMMEND.  I trust MS to know how they designed things and allow this to work properly... Others I do NOT trust and would avoid using them if at all possible.  Not to mention such a process would almost certainly require HOURS of being OFFLINE whereas the Windows Adjustments can be done in minutes.

    If the disk config doesn't lend itself to expansion through Disk Management, I would ask you - why not just reconfigure where you're saving things or buy a couple of more disks and setup a new, larger mirror.  Unless someone designed the storage REALLY poorly, you can probably move one "section" of data to the other drive, not expanding or contracting any volumes, and make more space available.

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