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Disk Utility - Add, Delete, and Resize Existing Volumes

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Disk Utility - What You Need to Know About Modifying Existing Volumes
Disk Utility - What You Need to Know About Modifying Existing Volumes

You can use Disk Utility, which is included with OS X 10.5, to add, delete, and resize partitions without first erasing the hard drive.

The version of Disk Utility bundled with OS X 10.5 has a few notable new features, specifically, the ability to add, delete, and resize hard drive partitions without first erasing the hard drive. If you need a slightly larger partition, or you would like to split a drive into multiple partitions, you can do it with Disk Utility, without losing the data that’s currently stored on the drive.

Resizing volumes or adding new partitions with Disk Utility is fairly straightforward, but you need be aware of the limitations of both options.

In this guide, we’ll look at resizing an existing volume, as well as creating and deleting partitions, in many cases without losing existing data.

If you want to partition and create volumes on a hard drive that doesn’t contain any data, or you’re willing to erase the hard drive during the partitioning process, see the Disk Utility - Partition Your Hard Drive With Disk Utility guide.

What You Will Learn

  • The difference between hard drives, partitions, and volumes.

  • How to resize, add, or delete volumes.

What You Need

  • A Mac with OS X 10.5.x or later installed. This guide is specific to OS X 10.5, but it should also be usable with future versions of the Mac OS. Earlier versions of Disk Utility are not able to resize or add to an existing volume without first erasing that volume’s contents. Do not attempt to use earlier versions of Disk Utility for this process.

  • One or more hard drives whose volumes you wish to resize, add to, or delete.

  • A few minutes of your time. Partitioning is a quick process. It will probably take longer to read this article than to partition your hard drive.
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