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How to split a drive in Windows 8 without using additional programs


It is not as difficult to split a hard disk into several partitions as it seems at first glance. The article will discuss the separation in the operating system Windows 8. In this case, you will find a description of both popular partition tables - GPT and MBR. By and large, the differences in actions are minimal, but still they are.

If the built-in program in the OS doesn’t work for you to split the disk, Windows 8 can use external programs for these purposes, which are enough for free access on the global network. One of them will be considered in the article. Typically, third-party tools have much greater flexibility and greater capabilities.


If your computer was purchased recently, it is likely that a disk with a GPT partition table is installed in it. MBR has many problems that cannot be considered critical, but in GPT all past shortcomings are resolved. Therefore, it is better to use GPT if you decide to split the disk. Windows 8 allows you to specify which table to use if no partitions have already been created on the HDD.

Disadvantages of the old type file table

It is not possible to create partitions on an HDD with MBR whose total volume exceeds two terabytes. If the volume of your hard drive is equal to three terabytes, on it all the same one third will remain marked as unused, no matter how much you struggle to change partitions.

The number of primary partitions on an MBR disk cannot exceed four. If more is required, you will have to create several logical partitions that will be placed in the primary.

MBR can be modified by viruses. This state of affairs reduces the overall security of the PC.

How to start disk management

The easiest and quickest way to do this is to start typing the word partition on the initial screen of Windows 8, in the "Parameters" section you will see a link to "Create and format hard disk partitions", and launch it.

The method consisting of more steps is to go to the Control Panel, then Administrative Tools, Computer Management and, finally, Disk Management.

And another way to start disk management is to press the Win + R buttons and enter the command in the "Run" line diskmgmt.msc

The result of any of these actions will be the launch of the disk management utility, with which we can, if necessary, split a disk in Windows 8 without using any other paid or free programs. In the program you will see two panels, above and below. The first one displays all the logical partitions of the disks, the lower one graphically shows the partitions on each of the physical devices for storing data on your computer.

Built-in utility

If your system has an HDD with a GPT table, you can split the hard disk into two using the built-in tools, and this is very easy to do. Go to the "Control Panel" and click on the "Administrative Tools" item. Then open the “Computer Management” utility, and then in the left column find the inscription “Disk Management”.

If you use a laptop, never touch the recovery partition, it is used by the device for its needs.

Right-click on the drive you want to split. In the context menu, tap on the words "Compress Volume". The system will ask you to specify how much space should be separated from the existing disk. After clicking on "OK" it may seem that the computer is frozen, do not rush to forcefully end the program, otherwise you may lose all the data on the section that you are compressing. Be patient to crash your hard drive; Windows 8 requires a number of complex operations.

After the operation is completed, an unallocated memory area will appear next to the section that has been reduced. Click on its image and select “Create Partition” in the context menu. In the create window, you need to find the file system and the size of the new volume.

If you do the same operation with an MBR disk, an additional volume will be created, not the main one. The system will display both the same.

How to split a disk into two or more in Windows 8 - example

Note: do not perform any actions with partitions that you don’t know the purpose of - on many laptops and computers there are various kinds of service partitions that do not appear in My Computer or elsewhere. Do not make changes to them.

In order to split the disk (your data is not deleted at the same time), right-click on the partition from which you want to allocate space for the new partition and select "Compress volume ...". After analyzing the disk, the utility will show you what place can be freed up in the "Size of compressible space" field.

Specify the size of the new partition

If you are manipulating the system drive C, then I recommend reducing the number proposed by the system so that there is enough space on the system hard drive after creating a new partition (I recommend leaving 30-50 Gigabytes. In general, frankly, I do not recommend breaking hard drives into logical sections).

After you click the “Compress” button, you will have to wait a while and you will see in Disk Management that the hard disk has been partitioned and a new partition has appeared on it in the “Not allocated” status

So, we managed to split the disk, the last step remained - to make Windows 8 see it and use the new logical disk.

  1. Right click on an unallocated partition
  2. From the menu, select Create Simple Volume, the Create Simple Volume Wizard will launch.
  3. Specify the desired volume partition (maximum if you do not plan to create several logical drives)
  4. Assign the desired drive letter
  5. Specify the volume label and in which file system should it be formatted, for example, NTFS.
  6. Click Finish

Done! We were able to split the drive in Windows 8.

That's all, after formatting, the new volume is automatically mounted in the system: thus, we managed to split the disk in Windows 8 using only standard means of the operating system. Nothing complicated, agree.

And suddenly it will be interesting:

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07/09/2013 at 03:04

usually an extended partition is not created on basic disks, there are already 4 partitions, then we compress it first (to compress it better we defragment it)
after / service windows / command line (right-click / start as administrator)
list disk
sel disk 0 or the one that you have
list part
create extended - further diskmgmt.msc we create volume

07/09/2013 at 03:16

create part extended
the easiest way is probably to distribute the disks with something like Acronis Disk Director or Paragon HDM - in fact, with the introduction of UEFI, disks began to be marked in GPT - and you will not see the basic MBRs, especially on laptops

03/14/2014 at 13:35

Thank you very much. Everything worked out

03/17/2014 at 21:22

Thank you guys, it helped a lot, thanks to you, I did not spend my time on unnecessary search for support sites, more like you, or more development, well done for you))

03/18/2014 at 09:35

Thanks for the feedback.

04/05/2014 at 00:10

Specify the desired volume partition (maximum if you do not plan to create several logical drives)

And if there is a need to create several logical drives, for example 2, after dividing drive C into C and a new volume, then what should I do? Thank.

04/05/2014 at 10:49

If I understand you correctly, there is a system partition and some free space, which is either a volume or non-distributed space.
If this is a volume: it can be compressed to the required size, a piece will be released that can also be turned into that (everything is simple and intuitive there).
If not distributed: create one volume of the right size. Of the remaining space - the second.
I hope I understood the question correctly.

04/30/2014 at 19:42

Hello. Help advice! Windows 8.1 system, the basic GPT hard drive has - Local C drive: 450 GB NTFS. Question: How to pinch 300 GB from it and create a new disk. Thank.

05/01/2014 at 09:08

Andrey, and the method described above does not work? In theory, everything should be done simply, provided that there is enough free space.

11/23/2014 at 21:45

Hello! On the new laptop I have three disks - C 900 GB, E 950 GB and D only 18 GB. I need a D drive that is significantly larger. I squeezed drive E, i.e. freed up space of 800 GB. But how to add these 800 GB to drive D? On disk D is the section of the equipment manufacturer (OEM) and when you try to allocate free space to disk D, this name is not in the list of proposed disks. What to do, that is, how to make drive D my work drive with a large size?

11.24.2014 at 13:42

Natalia, do not touch the manufacturer’s disk if you want to be able to always bring the computer to the factory state with automatic installation of Windows and more. If it is important for you to make disk D working and with a large volume, assign the letter Z or any other letter to the manufacturer’s disk through disk management, and the freed letter D to the disk you need.

12.24.2014 at 09:01

Hello Dmitry! And how can you increase drive D with drive C? The fact is that the OneKey Recovery program (Lenovo G580) offers to back up the system, but the D drive is only 22 GB, and you need at least 36 GB. Or is it better to use an external drive? Thank.

12/25/2014 at 07:55

It is better, of course, to use an external drive for such purposes, if any. And so go to Windows Disk Management, right-click on that C - compress to the desired size. Then right click on volume D - expand.

04/02/2016 at 15:09

the menu item "expand" is active only for a disk from which free space has been squeezed out. How to change this?

04/03/2016 at 08:46

Here are the ways:
The bottom line is that Windows itself can only expand “to the right,” but third-party software does not have such restrictions.

12.24.2014 at 10:58

Hello again! In addition to your question: If, for example, you separate 100 Gb from drive C, will it be a new drive, and will it not be overwritten with drive C during recovery? Those. can I use it for backup?

12/25/2014 at 07:53

Eugene, the situation is this: yes, this will be a new partition and upon recovery (if you mean a reset in changing computer settings), in theory, you can choose an option in which it should not touch partitions except the system one. But I have never been able to use this option and I definitely don’t know how it works (it’s just in theory that it may be understood that the partitions were on the computer at the time of purchase). So be careful and better safe than sorry.

02/19/2015 at 00:47

Hello! Do not tell me this situation. when you connect a new 3 TB hard disk, two volumes are displayed in disk management: one 2048 GB, a logical disk, and the other 746 GB, which is not allocated. How to distribute the second part in 746GB, and combine them so that in the conductor you can see the full volume of the disk without breaking?

02/19/2015 at 08:32

Hello. But just the option with a right-click on the main section and the option to expand (in disk management too) does not work? You can also try the utilities from this article: (they work slightly differently than standard Windows tools).

02/19/2015 at 21:21

No, it doesn’t work with a right click. thank

03/05/2015 at 13:45

Please help.
In the Disk Management section there is a work-space disk
but it is not accessible through explorer.
How to mount it?
Thanks in advance for your reply.

03/06/2015 at 09:38

Hello. Judging by your screenshot, in this case, just right-click and assign a letter to this drive.

06/23/2015 at 13:19

such a problem: divided the disk and set it to 1024, then I thought that it was small and deleted it, 197 GB was available for me before, and now I go in 64, where did the memory go? and more: there were 4 hygiene RAMs, but it became 3. what to do, tell me

06/24/2015 at 09:43

As for the RAM, I won’t tell you (depending on what they did, maybe they put a 32-bit system). And as for the disk, go to disk management and learn what’s happening there: there should be all the available space displayed.

08/05/2015 at 01:45

Good day. Great site, good article! And I was faced with installing Win 8.1, a 500GB disk partition.
asked a question, I have the same. How to make a system less than additional? After all, disk management offers to divide them at least in half, i.e. 250/250. And I need 100/400, or 150/350.

08/05/2015 at 10:49

Hm. During installation, you can definitely share as you like (when setting up the disk). Yes, in my opinion, and in disk management too (now I can not see). Well, in extreme cases, there are programs for working with partitions for free. Minitool Partition Wizard, for example.

01/20/2016 at 22:43

Do I need to enable protection for a newly minted logical drive in the system properties?

01/21/2016 at 09:19

It is at your discretion, depending on what you will store there. If movies are music and the like, then it is not worth it. And if important documents, then it may make sense to include protection + file history.
But just protection in general is not needed (since its purpose is to write changes to system files that are not on the newly-made drive).

03/01/2016 at 17:51

Hello, I have the following situation, I did everything as I said, squeezed drive C. There was a place that is not allocated, I click on drive D, but the expand volume item is not active. I decided to delete volume D (there were only pictures, no system information), thinking that everything that was freed would go to the already vacant place, but no, deleting this volume I got this way: from a C 127 gb drive it is not allocated and, accordingly, from the disk D 399 GB
combine them in any way it does not work, 127 GB can only expand drive C,
399 is not distributed, I can only create a new volume (that is, return drive D). The question is how to transfer these crazy 127 GB to partition D?

03/02/2016 at 09:25

Hello. Here such cases are considered and solutions:

05/04/2017 at 07:33

Thank! All that was needed was to break the disk. Spent the whole day searching for programs and fruitless attempts to use them, but it was so simple!

07/04/2018 at 16:10

Hello, tell me, please: on a 1Tb memory laptop. I want to split drive C so that it itself has 250 GB, and drive D had the rest of the place, but more

450 GB the program does not.

07/04/2018 at 17:42

This happens due to the fact that some system files are “physically” located not at the beginning of the disk, but further, and the system cannot move them.
One solution not always working:
1. disable the page file and hibernation.
2. restart the computer.
3. Defragment the disk.
4. try the reduction procedure again.

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We divide the hard drive in Windows 8 into several disks:

By means of Windows 8 without additional programs.

1. Right-click on the My Computer - Management shortcut.

2. We are interested in the "Disk Management" tab. Click on her.

3. Select the desired disk that you want to split - right-click on it - Compress volume.

4. Next, enter the size of the new disk. Part of it will be occupied by previously installed files, the empty part can be compressed. Enter the size of the new disk in megabytes and click the "Compress" button.

5. After compressing one part of the disk, you will have an unallocated area, which will become your second disk. Click on the unallocated area with the right mouse button - Create a simple volume.

6. In the next step, do not change the disk size - use all available space so that there are no unallocated areas.

7. Next, select the drive letter you want to name it.

8. The next step is to format the unallocated area. To do this, select the NTFS file system, specify the volume label.

It remains only to wait until the system formats and prepares a second disk on the computer and you're done!

How to crash a hard drive during a Windows installation?

This HDD partitioning method has both advantages and disadvantages. The main advantages are simplicity and clarity. In addition, the procedure does not take a lot of time. The main drawback is that this method is applicable only during the installation of a new operating system. And the user resorts to the process of division not only for this reason. In addition, resizing partitions and any editing of them will be impossible without formatting. And formatting, as you know, removes all information from the section.

Some time after loading the program that installs the OS, the user will be asked to select the volume in which the system files will be placed. It is here that there is an opportunity to break the disk. Windows 8 will show only one volume in this window if the HDD has just been purchased. If used before, most likely, the choice of volumes will be more extensive. To start editing partitions, click the "Disk Settings" button, it is located at the bottom of the window.

Before any manipulation of disk space, one or more volumes will have to be deleted. Remember that by deleting a volume, you lose all the data that was stored on it. If there is free disk space that has not yet been partitioned, it is not necessary to delete partitions.

After that, click on the "Create" button. In the window that opens, you will need to enter the desired volume size. After that, it remains only to click on the "Apply" item.

Using third-party programs

Для того чтобы разбить диск, Windows 8 может использовать не только встроенные инструменты, но и иные продукты. Самые популярные программы для редактирования томов выпускают компании Paragon и Acronis. У них есть как бесплатные версии, так и коммерческие, с расширенным функционалом. В этой инструкции будет описываться Acronis Disk Director. Скачайте, установите и запустите его. Главное окно поприветствует диалогом выбора того, в каком режиме стоит работать. Ручной обладает более сложными настройками, автоматический же требует минимум действий. Выбирайте ручной.

Подробная инструкция

Click on the button of the top menu “Wizard” - “Create Partition”. Select the drive you want to split. Click "Next" to indicate how much space you need to "bite" from the existing volume or volumes. Click on the "Next" button again. Now the program will start checking the HDD for errors. After that, you will be asked to indicate which size of the new partition is desired. It is possible to set the exact number of megabytes, as well as use the graphic slider.

Do not take all the free space if you want to create several volumes at once. Here, indicate whether the main section will be logical. For a simple user there is not much difference, choose a logical one. If the system needs to change this parameter, it will take care of everything.

At the next step, you need to decide which file system the partition will have. If you are using the Windows 8 operating system, select NTFS. It is possible to specify the file systems that are used in the Linux family of OS. Next, in the drop-down menu, select the letter and label for the volume. To apply the changes, click on the complete button.

Final steps

All the manipulations done will be reflected in the graphic display of the HDD partitions. But that's not all. Now the program must be closed. Before exiting, the user will be asked whether to perform all the previously mentioned operations. Without an answer, the program cannot be completed. It will be possible to split a Windows 8 drive only if you answer “Yes”. After that, the computer must be restarted.