What to Do When Extend Volume Option Grayed Out

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One user’s 128GB SSD drive ran out of the space. After cloned the whole disk to a 240GB SSD and successfully booted up, the Extend Volume is grayed out, preventing me from extending the partition to get more space.

image 14 - What to Do When Extend Volume Option Grayed Out

The reason why it’s grayed out is that there are two preserved partitions that get in the way between two partitions that want to join together. In order to extend a volume, they need to be removed so the free unallocated space needs to be right next to it. But I can’t easily delete these two system-reserved partitions using the built-in Disk Management tool. There is no option to delete it when right-clicking to it.

image 15 - What to Do When Extend Volume Option Grayed Out

That’s when the command line DiskPart comes in handy. But when I selected the volume and tried to use Delete Volume to delete it, I was prompted with the following error.

Virtual Disk Service error:
Cannot delete a protected partition without teh force protected parameter set.
image 16 - What to Do When Extend Volume Option Grayed Out

Let’s try Delete Partition command instead. Unfortunately, failed with the same message.

Now, let’s try it again with the “override” flag.

DISKPART> Delete Partition Override

Succeed. The “override” flag did the trick. It basically enables DiskPart to delete any partition regardless of their type, other than the ones that are system partition, boot partition or hold active paging file.

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Once these two partitions were out of the way, I went back to the Disk Management console and saw the Extend Volume option became available again.

image 18 - What to Do When Extend Volume Option Grayed Out

After following a few simple steps through the wizard, I got a bigger volume that uses all the space on the new bigger SSD disk.

image 20 - What to Do When Extend Volume Option Grayed Out

Problem solved.

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