How To Fix Cannot Extend C Drive Because Of Recovery Partition In Windows 11,10,8



How To Fix Cannot Extend C Drive Because Of Recovery Partition In Windows 11,10,8
Extend Volume Blocked by a Recovery Partition on Windows 10

Once I saw that one of the test virtual machines was running out of free space on system drive C:. I increased the disk size in the virtual machine settings and switched to the guest OS (Windows 10) to extend the size of the system partition using the unallocated space. When I opened the Disk Management console (diskmgmt.msc), I noticed that there were two recovery partitions on the drive. And the unallocated space was appeared after the second recovery partition (labeled as Windows RE). On some reason the recovery partition is located after the main partition (C:) and does not allow to expand the primary volume by using the unallocated space.
As you can see on the screenshot below, the “Extend Volume” button is inactive (gray). You can extend the partition using the Windows built-in tools if it has an unallocated space to the right of it (Windows 10 cannot extend primary partition to the right into unallocated space). In my case, I cannot extend the C: drive because it is blocked by the recovery partition (Windows RE). So, prior to extending the size of the system partition, I will have to delete the recovery partition.
Extend System Drive but recovery partition is in the way.
I just replaced my system drive with a bigger drive. Worked fine, but now I can’t extend the partition because the free space is not contiguous. I have a System Reserved (350MB), C-Drive/healthy/boot/etc (297GB), Recovery Partition (450MB), Unallocated (167GB). So when I right click on C-Drive, expand partition is greyed out. I assume it’s because the unallocated space is not contiguous.
I’m running windows 10. Anyone have any ideas how I can resolve this and make one single system drive?

Windows 10: Cannot extend C Drive because Recovery Partition in front of Windows (C:)
Cannot extend the System Drive because of Recovery Partition
Due to popular cost cuts strategies, you might have the need to assign smaller system drive partitions for your virtual machines. Once your system drive free space runs low, you can easily add additional free disk space for that system. Once done, the system drive can be extended in a couple of clicks using the Disk Management tool.
Unfortunately, on some occasions, you cannot extend the System Drive because of Recovery Partition as shown in the image below.
As you can see, the newly added free disk space was added after the Recovery partition. In a situation like this, you won’t be able to extend your system partition using the Disk Management tool. So, in order to solve this problem, we can use the Macrorit Partition Expert.
For this purpose, we can download and use the portable edition of the Macrorit Partition Expert tool.
Extend System Drive but Recovery Partition is in the Way Windows 11/10/8/7
Cannot extend c drive because of recovery partition
“I just replaced my system drive with a bigger drive. It worked fine, but now I can’t extend the partition because the free space is contiguous. I have a System Reserved (350MB), C-Drive/healthy/boot/etc (297GB), Recovery Partition (450MB), Unallocated (167GB). So when I right-click on C drive, expand partition is greyed out. I assume that it’s because the unallocated space is not contiguous. I’m running Windows 11/10. Anyone have any idea how I can resolve this and make one single system drive?”
This is a slightly modified thread from Microsoft Community (thread source), and it’s not hard for us to find similar posts on other popular forums, with questions like “Cannot extend C drive because of recovery partition”, “recovery partition is getting in the way of extending C partition”, “Can I delete recovery partition to extend C drive?”, and so forth.
From what the Microsoft Community user has outlined, he has a default UEFI/GPT-based hard drive partition layout, including a system partition, System Reserved partition (MSR), Windows C partition, Recovery Partition, in addition, a large chunk of unallocated space. Now he wants to merge the unallocated space to the C drive in Windows 11/10. He failed because there is a recovery partition in between. Once the C drive and unallocated space are blocked by the recovery partition, the “Extend Volume” option is greyed out, becoming no available to use at the moment. The situation can happen to Windows 11,10, 8, 7 and any other Windows versions, Virtual machines, and VMware.

Regards
Quazi Mahmudul Huq
Senior Faculty
IT System Admin
MCT, MCP, MCSA, MCSE, RHCSA, RHCE
RHCSV, CCNA, CCNP, MTCNA, MTCRE

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