ntfsresize – resize an NTFS filesystem without data loss
ntfsresize [OPTIONS] –info DEVICE
ntfsresize [OPTIONS] [–size SIZE[k|M|G]] DEVICE
The ntfsresize program safely resizes Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows 2000, Windows NT4 and Longhorn
NTFS filesystems without data loss. All NTFS versions are supported, used by 32-bit and 64-bit Windows.
Defragmentation is NOT required prior to resizing because the program can relocate any data if needed, without
risking data integrity.
Ntfsresize can be used to shrink or enlarge any NTFS filesystem located on an unmounted DEVICE (usually a disk
partition). The new filesystem will have SIZE bytes. The SIZE parameter may have one of the optional modifiers
k, M, G, which means the SIZE parameter is given in kilo-, mega- or gigabytes respectively. Ntfsresize con-
forms to the SI, ATA, IEEE standards and the disk manufacturers by using k=10^3, M=10^6 and G=10^9.
If both –info and –size are omitted then the NTFS filesystem will be enlarged to the underlying DEVICE size.
To resize a filesystem on a partition, you must resize BOTH the filesystem and the partition by editing the
partition table on the disk. Similarly to other command line filesystem resizers, ntfsresize doesnâ€™t manipulate
the size of the partitions, hence to do that you must use a disk partitioning tool as well, for example
fdisk(8). Alternatively you could use one of the many user friendly partitioners that uses ntfsresize inter-
nally, like Mandrivaâ€™s DiskDrake, QTParted, SUSE/Novellâ€™s YaST Partitioner, IBMâ€™s EVMS, GParted or
IMPORTANT! Itâ€™s a good practice making REGULAR BACKUPS of your valuable data, especially before using ANY par-
titioning tools. To do so for NTFS, you could use ntfsclone(8). Donâ€™t forget to save the partition table as
If you wish to shrink an NTFS partition, first use ntfsresize to shrink the size of the filesystem. Then you
could use fdisk(8) to shrink the size of the partition by deleting the partition and recreating it with the
smaller size. Do not make the partition smaller than the new size of NTFS otherwise you wonâ€™t be able to boot.
If you did so notwithstanding then just recreate the partition to be as large as NTFS.
To enlarge an NTFS filesystem, first you must enlarge the size of the underlying partition. This can be done
using fdisk(8) by deleting the partition and recreating it with a larger size. Make sure it will not overlap
with an other existing partition. Then you may use ntfsresize to enlarge the size of the filesystem.
When recreating the partition by a disk partitioning tool, make sure you create it at the same starting sector
and with the same partition type as before. Otherwise you wonâ€™t be able to access your filesystem. Use the â€™uâ€™
fdisk command to switch to the reliable sector unit from the default cylinder one.
Also make sure you set the bootable flag for the partition if it existed before. Failing to do so you might not
be able to boot your computer from the disk.
Below is a summary of all the options that ntfsresize accepts. Nearly all options have two equivalent names.
The short name is preceded by – and the long name is preceded by –. Any single letter options, that donâ€™t
take an argument, can be combined into a single command, e.g. -fv is equivalent to -f -v. Long named options
can be abbreviated to any unique prefix of their name.
By using this option ntfsresize will determine the theoretically smallest shrunken filesystem size sup-
ported. Most of the time the result is the space already used on the filesystem. Ntfsresize will refuse
shrinking to a smaller size than what you got by this option and depending on several factors it might
be unable to shrink very close to this theoretical size. Although the integrity of your data should be
never in risk, itâ€™s still strongly recommended to make a test run by using the –no-action option before
Practically the smallest shrunken size generally is at around “used space” + (20-200 MB). Please also
take into account that Windows might need about 50-100 MB free space left to boot safely.
This option never causes any changes to the filesystem, the partition is opened read-only.
-s, –size SIZE[k|M|G]
Resize filesystem to SIZE[k|M|G] bytes. The optional modifiers k, M, G mean the SIZE parameter is given
in kilo-, mega- or gigabytes respectively. Conforming to standards, k=10^3, M=10^6 and G=10^9. Use this
option with –no-action first.
Forces ntfsresize to proceed with the resize operation even if the filesystem is marked for consistency
Please note, ntfsresize always marks the filesystem for consistency check before a real resize operation
and it leaves that way for extra safety. Thus if NTFS was marked by ntfsresize then itâ€™s safe to use
this option. If you need to resize several times without booting into Windows between each resizing
steps then you must use this option.
Use this option to make a test run before doing the real resize operation. Volume will be opened
read-only and ntfsresize displays what it would do if it were to resize the filesystem. Continue with
the real resizing only if the test run passed.
Support disks having hardware errors, bad sectors with those ntfsresize would refuse to work by default.
Prior using this option, itâ€™s strongly recommended to make a backup by ntfsclone(8) using the –rescue
option, then running â€™chkdsk /f /r volume:â€™ on Windows from the command line. If the disk guarantee is
still valid then replace it. Itâ€™s defected. Please also note, that no software can repair these type of
hardware errors. The most what they can do is to work around the permanent defects.
This option doesnâ€™t have any effect if the disk is flawless.
Donâ€™t show progress bars.
Print the version number of ntfsresize and exit.
Display help and exit.
The exit code is 0 on success, non-zero otherwise.
No reliability problem is known. If you need help please try the Ntfsresize FAQ first (see below) and if you
donâ€™t find your answer then send your question, comment or bug report to the development team:
There are a few very rarely met restrictions at present: filesystems having unknown bad sectors, relocation of
the first MFT extent and resizing into the middle of a $MFTMirr extent arenâ€™t supported yet. These cases are
detected and resizing is restricted to a safe size or the closest safe size is displayed.
Ntfsresize schedules an NTFS consistency check and after the first boot into Windows you must see chkdsk run-
ning on a blue background. This is intentional and no need to worry about it. Windows may force a quick reboot
after the consistency check. Moreover after repartitioning your disk and depending on the hardware configura-
tion, the Windows message System Settings Change may also appear. Just acknowledge it and reboot again.
The disk geometry handling semantic (HDIO_GETGEO ioctl) has changed in an incompatible way in Linux 2.6 kernels
and this triggered multitudinous partition table corruptions resulting in unbootable Windows systems, even if
NTFS was consistent, if parted(8) was involved in some way. This problem was often attributed to ntfsresize but
in fact itâ€™s completely independent of NTFS thus ntfsresize. Moreover ntfsresize never touches the partition
table at all. By changing the â€™Disk Access Modeâ€™ to LBA in the BIOS makes booting work again, most of the time.
You can find more information about this issue in the Troubleshooting section of the below referred Ntfsresize
ntfsresize was written by Szabolcs Szakacsits, with contributions from Anton Altaparmakov and Richard Russon.
Many thanks to Anton Altaparmakov and Richard Russon for libntfs, the excellent documentation and comments, to
Gergely Madarasz, Dewey M. Sasser and Miguel Lastra and his colleagues at the University of Granada for their
continuous and highly valuable help, furthermore to Erik Meade, Martin Fick, Sandro Hawke, Dave Croal, Lorrin
Nelson, Geert Hendrickx, Robert Bjorkman and Richard Burdick for beta testing the relocation support, to Flori-
an Eyben, Fritz Oppliger, Richard Ebling, Sid-Ahmed Touati, Jan Kiszka, Benjamin Redelings, Christopher Haney,
Ryan Durk, Ralf Beyer, Scott Hansen, Alan Evans for the valued contributions and to Theodore Tsâ€™o whose re-
size2fs(8) man page originally formed the basis of this page.
ntfsresize is part of the ntfsprogs package and is available from:
The manual pages are available online at:
Ntfsresize related news, example of usage, troubleshooting, statically linked binary and FAQ (frequently asked
questions) are maintained at:
fdisk(8), cfdisk(8), sfdisk(8), parted(8), evms(8), ntfsclone(8), mkntfs(8), ntfsprogs(8)
ntfsprogs 1.13.1 February 2006 NTFSRESIZE(8)