A couple of years ago, I installed the Boot Camp beta on OS X, reserved 20 GB for Windows XP, and installed an XP in that partition. Since then, the Boot Camp beta expired and I used Parallels to run the XP in a VM from that partition. Now I want that 20 GB back.

I'm not terribly worried about the contents of the XP installation on that partition (I can just back up the data elsewhere), but if I can preserve it in a VM that would be a bonus. I would like to remove that partition and resize the OS X partition to occupy the full drive.

What's the proper way to do this?

  • Could someone with the privileges fix the tags: os-x -> osx; boot-camp -> bootcamp; also add 'macbook'. Thanks
    – Jonik
    Jul 26 '09 at 10:58
  • tags fixed . Jul 26 '09 at 11:08

Run the Boot Camp assistant and it will automatically start the removal process after some prompts.

You will need to use something like VMWare Converter to create a VM first if you want to keep the Windows Installation. You can then convert this to a Parallels VM.

  • Thanks, apparently the Boot Camp Assistant also expired (I'm still running OS X 10.4). I thought to look on Apple support and found that the workaround is to temporarily set the date back to something prior to September 2007, then remove the partition. Anyway, I'll try that after first playing with VMWare Converter. Jul 15 '09 at 10:59
  • @Greg No problem. I am not sure about converting to Parallels as I have never tried. I generally just recreate the VM from scratch since it is an opportunity to cleanup. Jul 15 '09 at 11:02
  • That's a good point, that VM really needs a good scrub. :) Jul 15 '09 at 11:05

You can use the Bootcamp Assistant (found in /Applications/Utilities) to restore your drive back to one partition.


Important thing to consider here is that there is a bug with Bootcamp that typically means that after you have removed a partition it has a hard time being able to do a new one and requires a fresh install of OSX should you ever wish to readd it at a later date!

  • Most likely it is not actually a bug, but rather an unfortunate side affect of a fragmented hard drive. The problem is that there is not a large enough free contiguous amount of space to turn into a new partition.
    – Josh Hunt
    Aug 14 '10 at 7:49

Open Disk Utility. Select the Windows partition. Choose the "Erase" tab. Change the format to "Mac OS Extended (journaled)". Click the "Erase" button. Wait. When it is done, choose the "Partition" tab. Move the dividing line to the end (probably will be the bottom) of the graph. Click to apply.

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