Extend A Drive In Windows 7 So You Can Make The Drive Grows Dynamically And Combine Drives Into One

Before following the instruction within this blog post on extending a drive for your computer, you have been warned that there are associated risks to extending a drive.  Such risks might be about losing data and more.  Therefore, you have been warned about the risks and should not blame me for something goes wrong with your computer.  If you aren’t sure about the whole thing, please don’t follow my instruction within this blog post for the sake of keeping your data and the computer safe.

I never had to create an extend volume on Windows 7 ever before, but I just did this yesterday.  OK, first thing first, what on earth is an extend volume?  Extend volume is how you merge additional hard drives onto the main one so the combination of drives would create a huge dynamic volume.  To put this in another way, let say you have a primary drive D is about to be filled up with lot of data, and you want to somehow increase the size of drive D — the only way to do this without having your computer seeing another drive F or G or whatever is to extend drive D — you combine additional hard drives that you had just installed for the purpose of extending the primary drive D and make drive D grows in size.  Get it?  OK, but how are we going to extend a volume?

No sweat, because it’s not that hard!  First of, before you even decide to start extending a primary drive, you should back up all the data of this particular primary drive for just in case something bad might happen (i.e., losing data).  Done?  Great!  Now we can begin our process of extending a primary drive.

I assume that you have already install an additional hard drive into your computer, therefore you should be OK by following whatever instructions that will come next.  Oh by the way, you should not extend the primary drive that holds the installation of Windows operating system, because if you screw this drive up you might have to reinstall Windows all over again (a painstaking process I’m sure).  Nonetheless, if you insist that you are a fearless individual, then you go ahead and try to extend the primary drive that holds the installation of Windows operating system — just don’t format the drive and so you should skip the part where I profess that you should format the drives that you want to combine (i.e., extend).  By the way, don’t blame me if things go wrong though, because you have been warned about the danger of extending a primary drive that holds the installation of the Windows operating system.

Since you have already done the backup of a primary drive that you want to extend, therefore it should be OK for you to format it.  I’m not sure if the format of the drive you want to extend is necessary or not, but you can always try to extend the drive without formatting it first to see how things fair.  For me though, I formatted the primary drive that I wanted to extend.  Format?  Yes?  (To format, do this — click on Start button > hover mouse pointer over Computer > right click on Manage > left click on Storage > Disk Management > right click on the correct primary drive > left click on Format > choose NTFS as file system and check the box that labels as Perform a quick format.)  Great, let move on then.

Now, you go ahead and format the second hard drive, the one that you just installed not too long ago for the purpose of extending the primary drive (i.e., the primary drive that doesn’t hold the Windows OS).  Done?  Did you format it with NTFS?  Great!  Go ahead and get back into Disk Management window (i.e., Computer > Manage > Storage > Disk Management), right click on the second hard drive (i.e., the one you just formatted) and click on Delete Volume.  The next part I might not have the details down to the letter, but it should go like this — right click on the primary drive that you want to extend, choose Extend Volume, and add the available unallocated drive (i.e., the one you just do a Delete Volume for) as to extend the primary drive.  I think the rest of the process is pretty much self-explanatory, therefore you just follow through with whatever Windows asks you to do.

Done with extending your primary drive?  Inside Disk Management window, you should now see the graphs of two separate disks with different disk number labels are colored with the same color.  This means you have successfully extend the primary hard drive with the second hard drive or so.  You should also see both disks are having the same drive letter or so.  If you go to Computer from Start button, you now should see the drive (i.e., primary drive) you have done an extend for is now showing larger drive size (i.e., larger disk space).

To conclude and bring everything back to normal, you need to restore the data of the primary drive from the backup you had made earlier.  After the restoring of the primary drive’s data, you should be able to use the primary drive (i.e., now is being extended) as if it’s just a regular drive — you won’t be able to tell that it has been extended unless you take a look at the Disk Management window.  Good luck!

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