I recently came up against a problem that surfaces from time to time for me in my business.  I had a client who just bought a new server and was not happy with the partitioning of the hard drive.  It was a 1 TB drive, but the C drive was only about 40GB.  The client wanted at least twice this size for the C drive.  Since it was a new server and we had time before the installation, we were going to reload the server from scratch, partitioning it to the client’s request during the reload.

Usually when I encounter this problem of a small C drive on a server, it happens after it has been in production for a while.  20GB seemed large enough, but now with updates and program installations, your running short on space.  I’ev used Partition Magic many times before for desktop PCs, but it doesn’t work on servers.  They used to have a product called Server Magic, but this product is no longer sold.  I’ve seen some other products that you can use on servers, but they’ve always been more than I’ve wanted to spend.

So, in the case at hand, it wasn’t a big deal to reload since it was a new server.  However, I was fortunate enough to run across an article by a reader in Windows IT Pro magazine talking about a free program called GParted.  It is a Linux program available through and works on both desktop and server environments.  The author mentioned using the product successfully many times on servers, and since I had a situation where if we screwed something up we could reload (the original plan anyway), I figured this would be a good time to try it out.

The easiest way to download and use GParted (the Gnome Partition Editor)is to get the iso and burn it to a CD.  It boots into a Linux environment and allows you to create, delete, resize, and move partitions.  We used it successfully to delete the large extended partition and logical D drive, resize the C drive, then recreate the extended partition and logical D drive.  It saved us a lot of time and the hassle of reloading that server.

If you need to fiddle with partitions on desktop or server computers, give GParted a try.

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