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Is there any free (reliable....yes I know..) disk partition software for Windows Server? I am checking before I do make a purchase. I just need to resize a disk.

Edit ~ I have a windows server 2003 Raid 5 with 2 partitions "C" and "D". I need to resize "C" by taking some space from "D". The "D" has 100GB extra and "C" is running out of space.

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Can you elaborate a bit more about what you need to do? –  Zoredache Jun 16 '09 at 19:43

4 Answers 4

The gParted liveCD is probably the best I've seen. It's free, opensource, and a fairly small download, with a nice simple interface.

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+1 gParted works so well, I keep a copy in the glove compartment of my car. and I've used that copy at least twice. :) –  skamradt Jun 16 '09 at 23:18

Windows Server 2008's installation media allows you to use DISKPART to manipulate NTFS volumes very effectively. (It will manipulate Windows Server 2003-based volumes as well-- both OS's are using the same NTFS version, 5.1.)

I've used the "EXPAND" functionality in DISKPART fairly regularly in previous versions of Windows, but I've had to build Windows PE discs to take advantage of that functionality when resizing boot volumes. Booting the W2K8 installation CD and using DISKPART directly from there is nicer than having to make more WinPE discs.

I haven't used the new SHRINK functionality in the W2K8 DISKPART, but it looks handy.

I don't know if it's strictly "legal" to download the evaluation version and use it for this functionality, but you could definitely do it if you don't have a copy of the W2K8 installation media sitting around.

(I'd trust DISKPART and the canonical Microsoft implementation of NTFS more than I'd trust any other tools. That's no slight on the other tools, but being that NTFS is Microsoft-proprietary, I'd expect their tools to handle their filesystem better than any others.)

Edit: You're also going to get support for Microsoft software RAID volumes by using the Windows Server 2008 setup CD, versus open source tools. (I like the open source tools fine, but the Microsoft solution is compelling to me in this case.)

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You can use a Linux live cd and gparted to resize partitions. But resizing partitions aren't always possible. So you need to know when you can do this safely or use tools that prevent you from doing anything destructive.

If you're trying to shrink the partition you need to run a disk defragger that will move all the data to the beginning of the disk before resizing the partition. Gparted in this case will not let you resize your partition smaller than the last block of real data. After you resize the partition windows will force a diskcheck when you boot up.

To grow a partition then with most of the free tools that I know of you have to have some space available at the end of your existing partition to expand to. Once you grow a partition you'll need to run diskpart.exe to have it recognize the new size.

See this KB article: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/325590

It looks like you can also use the diskpart.exe utility to resize the partitions based on that KB. But Gparted is a gui app...where diskpart is command line. I would make sure that your data is backed up before proceeding. No matter what tool you end up using.

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I like Parted Magic it is a live linux distro that uses the gparted partition editor. Very nice if you like GUI's

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