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Solved "Shrink Volume" Grayed Out - External Hard Drive


Posts
33
#1
Hi All,

I want to format my external hard drive into two partitions so that I can use one of them as a recovery drive for my Windows PC and the other one for my personal data. I am using Windows 8.1.

It is a 1TB WD Elements hard drive currently formatted into one exFAT partition. It is about half full. I don't want to delete the partition and then create two new ones because I have nowhere to backup the files currently on the drive. So I want to shrink the existing partition and then create a new smaller partition but for some reason I can't do that in Windows Disk Management. When I right-click on the drive (E:) The option "shrink drive..." is grayed (as shown in the screenshot).
Screenshot (2).png

Does anybody know why this could be? When I right-click on my Windows (C:) drive this option is not grayed out. (I tried doing the same thing using Partition Wizard but I had the same problem - the "split" option, along with a whole lot of others, is grayed out).

Also, another strange thing which might help you to understand. In Partition Wizard, when I right-click on my external hard drive (E:) and click properties it shows that the hard drive is full (first screenshot) even though Windows File Explorer shows that it still has about 500GB of free space (second screenshot)
Capture.PNG Capture1.PNG

Why does Partition Wizard (and obviously Windows Disk Management as well) think that the disk is full?

Any help on this would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks,
William.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 Single Language 64-bit
    Computer type
    Laptop
    System Manufacturer/Model Number
    Dell Inspirion 3521-3829
    CPU
    Intel Pentium CPU 2117U @ 1.80GHz
    Memory
    RAM: 4.00GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Intel HD
    Sound Card
    Realtek HD
    Screen Resolution
    Resolution: 1366x768 Refresh Rate: 60p Hz
    Hard Drives
    Internal hard-drive: 500GB
    Internet Speed
    D: 3.15Mbps U: 0.46Mbps
    Browser
    Google Chrome
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    avast! antivirus

topgundcp

Well-Known Member
VIP Member
Guru
San Jose - California

Posts
2,847
#2
You cannot shrink a FAT disk. Shrinking is only supported with NTFS. You have no choice but to backup your data and re-initialize it as NTFS.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    8.1x64PWMC Ubuntu14.04x64 MintMate17x64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model Number
    Home Brewed
    CPU
    I7 4970K OC'ed @4.7 GHz
    Motherboard
    MSI-Z97
    Memory
    16 GB G-Skill Trident X @2400MHZ
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    Sound Card
    X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Professional Series
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    Dual HP-W2408
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    Hard Drives
    256 GB M2 sm951, (2) 500GB 850EVO, 5TB, 2 TB Seagate
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Posts
33
#3
Ok. Thank you topgundcp. Sorry that is probably basic info that is available everywhere on Google. I just didn't think of it. Any ideas why Partition Wizard shows it as full though?
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 Single Language 64-bit
    Computer type
    Laptop
    System Manufacturer/Model Number
    Dell Inspirion 3521-3829
    CPU
    Intel Pentium CPU 2117U @ 1.80GHz
    Memory
    RAM: 4.00GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Intel HD
    Sound Card
    Realtek HD
    Screen Resolution
    Resolution: 1366x768 Refresh Rate: 60p Hz
    Hard Drives
    Internal hard-drive: 500GB
    Internet Speed
    D: 3.15Mbps U: 0.46Mbps
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    avast! antivirus