This simple tutorial will show you the exact steps to follow in order to combine or ‘undo’ existing hard drive partitions in Windows. As usual, I’ll be using Windows 10 in this case, but the process is nearly identical in previous versions as well. Prefer a video guide? I’ve embedded yet another cringe-inducing, embarrassingly old YouTube video of the process in Windows 7. If you’re interested in how to create a hard drive partition, I’ve made a guide for that too (and yes there’s another awe-inspiring YouTube video to go along with that one too).
Open your Computer Management panel by searching for ‘computer management’ in your Start Menu or by right-clicking on ‘This PC’ or ‘My Computer’ from the File Explorer.
Within the Computer Management pane, select Storage > Disk Management.
Select and right-click on the existing hard drive partition you’d like to ‘delete’ in order to combine it with another partition then choose ‘Delete Volume…’
Precaution: This is where you’ll need to decide which of your current hard drive partitions you’d like to delete in order to combine its allocated space with another partition. The bottom center section of this screen shows all of the disks starting with ‘Disk 0’ and ascending from there if you have others. Notice that I have two physical hard drives in my PC. My Disk 0 is my C: drive on which lives my operating system and other applications I’ve deemed important enough to benefit from SSD speeds (Samsung 860 EVO). Be sure not to delete your operating system drive or any accompanying System Reserved/recovery partitions that may exist (although the delete volume option will likely not be selectable on these partitions). You should also be sure that the partitions you are trying to combine are on the same Disk drive (i.e. share the same row). In my case, I’ll be demonstrating by deleting my E: drive to eventually combine with my B: drive (Western Digital Black). You’ll then be warned that deleting the volume will delete all data currently on it, so be sure to back up anything you don’t want to delete prior to clicking ‘Yes.’
Step 4Deleting the volume in the previous step will leave you with an Unallocated partition. So, now select and right-click on the partition you’d like to combine with the Unallocated partition then choose ‘Extend Volume…’
Make your way through the Extend Volume Wizard to combine the Unallocated partition with the partition you selected then you’re free to store even more junk on your now-larger hard drive partition.
Explanation: The Extend Volume Wizard is pretty self-explanatory, but just because I like the sound of typing on my mechanical keyboard, I’ll give a brief explanation. First, you’ll specify the amount of space you’d like to use to extend your partition (by default this is the full size of the unallocated partition you just created by deleting your other volume, so chances are you want the full size). Then… oh wait, that’s all actually – just choose ‘Finish’ and you’re done.