How to Partition HDD or SSD on Windows and MacOS:

Do you need to split the drive into sectors in order to store the OS and software on one, and personal data on the other? This article is a detailed guide to partitioning media in two operating systems, from Microsoft and Apple, in different ways. There are also three simple utilities that can solve this problem. Whether it is worth repartitioning the drive at all, he will also tell you.

Why do I need to partition (partition) a hard drive?

The operating system is able to see hard and solid state drives as partitions, which are also called local disks or virtual volumes.

As a rule, newly acquired storage media are not divided into such volumes. They consist of one section where all the files uploaded by the user are stored.

However, a disc without partitioning is not very convenient to use. And it’s not even a matter of finding the files you need, because they can be stored in folders. Let’s say the user stores all the data together: operating systems, software installers, as well as multimedia, text documents. In this case, when reinstalling the OS, all files will be deleted.

A more practical solution is to divide the drive into several disks, to each of which the user can allocate memory. For example, a 2 TB media can be repartitioned into 2 disks:

  1. C – for operating systems and programs. For this case, you can allocate 50 GB.
  2. Remaining space – “D drive” – ​​leave for multimedia, games, text files.

If you need to reinstall the system, personal data will remain intact.

Important ! If you need to split a hard or solid-state drive that already contains data, you should copy the necessary files to another drive: the data will be erased during the splitting process.

The following sections will tell you how to partition the drive.

Curious: Who and how invented the first hard drive: 4 eras of HDD history

How to partition a disk in Windows 10, 8.1 and 7 using standard tools

To divide the SSD or hard drive into volumes, you can use the system program that is embedded in Windows. This classic utility is available in 7, 8.1 and 10th versions.

Interesting : hard drive SATA 3.0 16TB 7200 512MB  is capable of transferring 12 gigabits of information in an instant.

How to partition storage into virtual disks in Windows
Step 1 1. Click on “My Computer” with the right mouse button (RMB).
2. Select “Control”.
3. Click on “Disk Management”.
Step 2 ·                                 The program window will display the number of local partitions if the disk has already been divided before.
·                                 At the bottom of the utility window, find the volume you want to split.
·                                 Right-click on it and select “Shrink Volume”.
Note : the utility can display sections that are not visible in the explorer. It’s not scary. The OS sometimes creates hidden system drives.
Step 3 1. Allocate Memory: Specify the amount to allocate for the new partition.
2. Confirm compression.
Tip : if you need HDD for games, it is better to choose the option with more memory. SATA 3.0 12TB 5400 256MB is  fine, especially if you want a model with a margin. Winchester is capable of storing ten terabytes of information.
Step 4 The monitor will then display the amount of free space available for the new disk. On it you need to right-click and select “Create a simple volume”.
After that, the “New Volume Wizard” window will appear on the screen. All you have to do is follow his prompts.

Recommendation : if the user needs to store resource-intensive software, it would be good to choose an SSD with at least 2 TB. For example, the MZ-76Q2T0BW will not only accommodate the necessary files, but also speed up the response of the operating system and heavy programs.

If you later want to split the disk into several more partitions, you can use the same guide.

Read also: TOP 10 best SSD-drives with a volume of 240-256 GB

How to partition a disk on the command line

You can quickly partition the drive in this way. However, it should be noted that the instructions given here are only suitable for those disks that have not been previously shared. So, how to divide the C drive into 2 parts:

First, you need to call the line on behalf of the administrator: hold down the Win + X keys and select the appropriate option.

Tip : if the user needs laptop media , the form factor should be considered when choosing. For laptops, the M2 and 2.5-inch models are suitable. The first option applies only to solid-state devices, and the second – to both rigid and SSD. 3.5 ”formats are also suitable for PCs.

Enter commands:

  1. diskpart;
  2. list volume – here you need to remember the volume number that corresponds to section C;
  3. select volume N – specify the partition number instead of a letter;
  4. shrink desired = size – prescribe the number in megabytes by which you need to shrink the system disk in order to divide it into two parts;
  5. list disk – you need to remember the number of the storage device on which the system partition is located;
  6. select disk M – replace the letter with the disk number from the previous item in the list;
  7. create partition primary;
  8. format fs = ntfs quick;
  9. assign letter = – after “equal” write a letter that will correspond to the new volume;

Interesting : TS256GMTE110S due to its format – M2 – is suitable even for super-thin laptops.

Now you can close command. To check if everything worked out, you can open Windows Explorer . In it you need to see if the new section is displayed under the letter specified by the user. If not, you should restart your computer. If it still does not appear, you can try to split it again.

If you cannot divide the storage using system tools, you can use special utilities. How to share the media in this case is described below: there are three popular utilities. It is important to download them from an official source so as not to harm your PC.

Selection: TOP 5 best HDDs for 2 TB – Rating of internal hard drives for 2000 GB

How to Partition a Disk Using Minitool Partition Wizard Free

A handy program that supports all the classic operations for drives. With its help, you can create, divide or delete a partition of a hard or SSD media.

Recommendation : If you have ample storage, you can install a small solid-state device , such as the 120GB KINGSTON A400 , as a system option. Then you don’t need to break it.

What to do:

  1. After installing and launching the software, select the icon with its name in the window that opens.
  2. Click on the disk to be divided, RMB and select “Move / Resize”.
  3. Allocate memory: use the slider to set the value by which the disk to be partitioned will be reduced. It will also become a place for another section.
  4. Click on the free space with the computer mouseand select “Create”.
  5. A window will appear on the screen showing the amount of free space. If everything is in order – just click “OK” and then – “Apply”. If the value needs to be changed, then go back two steps.

Note : when the user splits the C drive, after all the above steps, the computer restarts. This will not happen if other sections are being repartitioned.

Comparison: SSD or HDD – which is better: the differences between 2 types of drives

AOMEI Partition Assistant

Another simple free utility that makes it possible not only to separate Solid State and HDD disks, but also to format, move them, delete them. The software is easy to use. As in the previous case, it prompts all the actions that need to be performed. Another advantage of the application is the support of the Russian language. It can be selected at the first start.

The table below explains step by step how to work with the program.

How to partition a drive into volumes in AOMEI Partition Assistant 
No. 1 When the program window opens, you will need to select the disk that the user needs to repartition.
Then you need to right-click on this disk and select “Resize Partition”.
No. 2 Allocate storage memory. To do this, you can enter a numerical value or use the slider. After setting the desired partition size, you will need to confirm the action.
No. 3 When the free space marked in the previous paragraph is displayed, you need to click on it with the right mouse button.
In the context menu that opens, select the “Create section” option.
Now you need to confirm the size of the disk, its letter and file system. After that, you will need to click “OK”.
To save all the changes made by the user, click “Apply”.
No. 4 The stakeout process starts. It runs in PreOS mode. this means that while the operating system is not yet fully loaded, the program will begin to partition the disk.
Before starting work, the utility will display a message on the monitor : it will ask for permission to partition the disk. You need to click “Yes”.
No. 5 Wait until your computer or laptop restarts.
Open the disk editor and see if a new section has appeared.
If everything is correct, then the explorer will display a new disk with the volume specified by the user, and the space on the system volume C will become smaller.

See also: Is it possible to install games on SSD – 4 advantages of SSD for gaming over HDD

Acronis Disk Director

The program is easy to use, has a friendly shell, thanks to which you can intuitively understand the controls. Perhaps its only drawback is the lack of a full-fledged free version. There is only a demo. However, to divide the storage medium into sections, the demo version is enough.

Tip : if you need a fast hard drive, it is better to choose the option that uses the third generation SATA connection, as well as whose spindle makes 7.2 thousand revolutions in 60 seconds. WD4005FZBX is just that.


How to repartition:

  • After starting the application, you need to click on the name of the disk that you want to share, RMB and select the appropriate option in the menu that opens.
  • Now you need to set the volume for a new or several new sections by moving the slider. After the size is selected, you need to click “OK”, and then – “Apply”.

Interesting : Samsung 2.5 “870 QVO is a high-speed SSD. The model can write 1700 megabits of information in an instant, and read 2 thousand megabits. In addition, this is a rather durable option: the indicator of its motor to failure is equal to two million hours.

That’s all. After that, the volume selected by the user will be split according to the parameters that were specified during the setup process. As in the case with the first described utility, a reboot will be required if the system part crashes.

How to partition a hard drive in MacOS X using standard tools

Since Mac OS rarely needs to be reinstalled, and it updates itself quickly, few people think about partitioning a hard drive. However, this can come in handy if the owner of a MacBook or Apple computer wants to use several operating systems.

Despite the fact that during the installation of a new operating system through the Boot Camp system program, the required volume will be created automatically, you need to divide the drive so that it is convenient to use the data from each OS and not worry about their integrity.

The “apple” operating system has preinstalled software for working with storage media. It’s called Disk Utility.

Interesting : portable SSD and CDM usually do not break. They just play the role of a big stick.

How to work with it:

  • Launch a system application using Launchpad or Spotlight.
  • In the left block, mark the storage medium that you want to split and click on the appropriate button.
  • Add a new section by clicking “+”.
  • On the diagram, mark the new volume and set its size, file system type and label.
  • Click “Apply” and wait for the utility to finish splitting.

Note : The partitioning process can take a long time, especially if there is very little unallocated space on the primary volume after repartitioning.

Learn: How to Install an SSD in MacBook and iMac: Instructions in 4 Sections

As you can see, partitioning the drive into partitions is not difficult, regardless of the storage type. This can be done both with classic applications built into the OS, and with the help of special software. The process of partitioning disks into separate volumes in each of the utilities presented here follows the same principle, so it is difficult to advise which option to choose: everything is individual.

Leave a Comment