I'm currently trying to encrypt my system partition using VeraCrypt. Unfortunately, I always get the following error: "The VeraCrypt Boot Loader requires at least 32 KBytes of free space at the beginning of the system drive [...]"

What I've tried so far: I've downloaded GParted and shrunk my C: partition by 10 MB and moved the freed up space to the beginning of my system drive.

I'd appreciate any help I can get!

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I've also tried moving the 10mb unallocated space directly in front of the C: partition.

List disk output:

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I've now freed up some space on Disk 0 as well. Unfortunately, I'm still unable to encrypt my system drive.

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bcdedit /v output:

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  • Any other drives set to "system"? Can you post a full listing from disk management? Output from diskpart's list/detail commands may also be helpful. – ssnobody Apr 24 '19 at 23:43
  • @ssnobody Here's the full list: i.imgur.com/BBVPOlg.png – Timo Güntner Apr 25 '19 at 7:09
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    Advice: Do not encrypt the system partition! Any problem with VeraCrypt will make the computer unbootable. – harrymc Apr 25 '19 at 14:30
  • Veracrypt's bootloader may be trying to install to your disk0, which does not have the required space at the beginning or perhaps you have a GUID Partition Table (GPT). The output of list disk after running diskpart will tell if it is the latter. – ssnobody Apr 26 '19 at 3:12
  • The question is what is meant by "the system drive". This could be for example C:, so I would counsel moving some of the 10 MB space to before C:. If that doesn't help, put some before all the other partitions. I suggest taking first an image backup of the disk, just in case. – harrymc Apr 26 '19 at 9:00

This doesn't help with VeraCrypt but my suggestion for encrypting Windows 10 is always BitLocker.
It works much better with a TPM. It's easy to setup and you can pretty much forget about it from that point. As long as you have your recovery key you can use recovery tools supporting bitlocker (plenty of them) or put the disk in another windows device to unlock it.
This does require Windows 10 Pro (or any edition other than Home IIRC).

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  • Mainly it requires many $$ to be paid to Microsoft if you don't have a Professional license. – U. Windl Apr 29 '19 at 8:06

Use GParted for this: http://gparted.org/livecd.php. Windows doesn't likes moving its own system partition while it's running.

Burn to cd or or install to USB drive Ensure you shut down windows completely. Do this by running shutdown -s -f -t 0 in the command prompt. Boot from said CD or USB drive. Open the GParted tool and select your drive on the top right (if not already selected) Shrink the C: partition (usually the largest one on the disk) by the amount you want it to move. Move it over the amount requested Click "Apply" Wait for actions to complete Restart the computer

2 Method

Where is your "reserved" partition located and what's the size? In diskpart, list partition and copy past the output here please.

In any case, here is how you slove it, but then you only have windows on that disk: 1. Use true image (or similar) to make an image of your c drive 2. Boot the windows installation disk 3. Select" install now" then "custom" and delete EVERY partition on the disk (especially the "Reserved one"). 3. Then select the "unalocated space" and install 4. Run veracrypt to check if it work. Assuming it does: 5. Boot on a true image (or similar) recovery disk and restore your old C to the current C 6. If you new C is not the size you want, boot on Disk Director (or similar like gparted) disk to resize the partition.

Hey, last time I had problem with this error so I will show you today how to fix this, so you’ll be able to encrypt your partition without any problems. We need to shrink main partition because VeraCrypt require this to store “bootloader” at the begging of the partition, VeraCrypt BootLoader is stored at the beginning of the partition.

We will use free version of “MiniTool Partition Wizard Free 10” which is completely OK to do this task.

After installing MiniTool Partition Wizard we need to select disk which we want to encrypt (windows partition in my case).

Select your partition and choose “Move/Resize Partition“

then just leave some empty space at the beginning of the partition (Unallocated Space Before), leave let say 8 MB 🙂 it should be ok, because VeraCrypt requires only 32 KB for BootLoader, but we will leave more space 😉

Click ok, and Apply Changes.

now you should be ready to encrypt your whole disk with VeraCrypt without problems.

You can download MiniTool Partition Wizard Free Edition from – https://www.partitionwizard.com/download.html

Partition Magic lets you slide (move the start and end partition locations at least 32k towards the end of the disk) a partition that is smaller than the total disk space then you can't boot into Windows and then run PM, you'd have to boot into PM directly and then slide the partition. There are other partition apps that can slide partitions if PM can't, you will have to google, etc., to find them.

Failing that, you'd have to repartition and create a 32k partition first and then create the main partition, etc, but this involves reinstalling Windows.

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  • 1
    Note the OP doesn't need help to repartition or move partitions, since they are already capable of doing that. See "I've downloaded GParted and shrunk my C: partition by 10 MB and moved the freed up space to the beginning of my system drive" – ssnobody Apr 29 '19 at 21:21

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