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I'm trying to extend the Windows partition running on my MacBook Air (Bootcamp is used) without losing any data, of course.

What I have done is that I have used GParted live to shrink the OS X Lion partition and that resulted in some 8GB "Unallocated" space. Now I'd like to merge this "Unallocated space" to my Windows partition. However, GParted live doesn't have any options for me to do so. Disk Management in Windows 7 shows the "Extend volume" option is disabled when I right clicked on the Windows partition.

What have I missed here? What do I do now to add that 8GB of space to my Windows partition?

Is it possible for me to make this "Unallocated" space a common partition which both Windows and OS X can use? If yes, which format should the partition have (e.g. NTFS)? Should this be done using OS X Disk Utility or Windows Disk Management?

I have read the following references but apparently, they are not sufficient to help me.

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1 Answer

  • What have I missed here? What do I do now to add that 8GB of space to my Windows partition?
    You might have not missed out on anything. You can use Disk Utility in OSX to extend the partition to fill that 8GB of space. It won't extend the NTFS partition, but you can extend the OSX Mac OS Extended (Journaled) partition to fill that space. It's a simple Drag to Resize operation. I am attaching a screenshot of the same.

Partition Resize

  • Or better yet, I have another idea. Is it possible for me to make this "Unallocated" space a common partition which both Windows and OS X can use? If yes, which format should be partition be e.g. NTFS and should this be done using OS X Disk Utility or Windows Disk Management?
    For a common space between OSX and Windows, You it to be in a filesystem which is readable by both! And that is MS-DOS (FAT) or ExFAT but ExFAT won't be read by Windows versions before XP.

Partition types

  • Note: If you want to use a custom or a paid software / app which would even extend NTFS for you, you will need to use iPartition. It would cost you around £30 I guess! But resizing would destroy your data, so I suggest you do it with the standard Mac OSX Disk Utility.
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Thanks for your answer @aliasgar. However, I'm confused. 1) "...but you can extend the OSX Mac OS Extended (Journaled) partition to fill that space ..." - This doesn't help me achieve my goal does it? 2) "For a common space between OSX and Windows, You it to be in a filesystem which is readable by both! And that is MS-DOS (FAT) or ExFAT but ExFAT won't be read by Windows versions before XP." - I'm using Windows 7 here. If only FAT can be used, why am I able to read Windows' partition while in Mac and vice versa at the moment? –  fuzzybee Sep 17 '12 at 3:41
    
Regarding which tool to used, Gparted Live seems to be one of the best, if not the best out there, according to my research. Is it not really not capable of helping me achieve my goal here? –  fuzzybee Sep 17 '12 at 3:46
    
I really don't understand why gparted give you that 8GB unallocated space which you cant use. That's why i suggested OSX' Disk Utility. And it might be able to correct the indexing along with allocating that 8GB space. I really don't look at best or otherwise, I just look at whether it gets my job done and fixes my problem! –  aliasgar Sep 17 '12 at 4:20
    
I have the same question on why Gparted gave the 8GB unallocated space which become unusable. Hope someone else can help. Thanks for your help anw :) –  fuzzybee Sep 17 '12 at 4:25
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