NTFSRESIZE(8) System Manager's Manual NTFSRESIZE(8)
ntfsresize - resize an NTFS filesystem without data loss
ntfsresize [OPTIONS] --info device
ntfsresize [OPTIONS] [--size size[k|M|G]] device
The ntfsresize program non-destructively resizes Windows XP/2000/NT4,
Windows Server 2003 or Longhorn Beta NTFS filesystems. It 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 conforms 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.
The ntfsresize program doesn't manipulate the size of partitions. To
do that you have to use a disk partitioning tool, for example fdisk(8).
IMPORTANT! Generally it's a good practice making regular backups of
your valuable data, especially before using any partitioning tools. To
do so for NTFS, you could use ntfsclone(8). It's also included in the
If you wish to shrink an NTFS partition, first use ntfsresize to shrink
the size of the filesystem. Then you may use fdisk(8) to shrink the
size of the partition by deleting the partition and recreating it with
the smaller size. But be careful, do not make the partition smaller
than the new size of the NTFS filesystem otherwise you won't be able to
boot and you might lose your data.
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 with the same starting disk cylinder (sector) and parti-
tion type as before. Otherwise you may lose your entire filesystem.
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. All
options have two equivalent names. The short name is preceded by - and
the long name is preceded by --. Any single letter options, that don't
take an argument, can be combined into a single command, e.g. -fi is
equivalent to -f -i.
By using this option ntfsresize will determine the theoretically
smallest shrunken filesystem size supported. Most of the time
the result is the space already used on the filesystem. Ntfsre-
size 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, it's still
strongly recommended to make a test run by using the --no-action
option before real resizing.
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
This option never causes any changes to the filesystem, the par-
tition 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 if the
filesystem is marked "dirty" for consistency check.
Please note, ntfsresize always marks the filesystem "dirty"
before a real resize operation and it leaves that way for extra
safety. Thus if NTFS was marked by ntfsresize then it'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 dis-
plays what it would do if it were to resize the filesystem.
Continue with the real resizing only if the test run passed.
Don't show progress bars.
Display help and exit.
The exit code is 0 on success, non-zero otherwise.
No reliability problems are known or has been reported. If you need
help please try the ntfsresize FAQ first (see below) and if you don't
find your answer then send your question, comment or bug report to
<linux-ntfs-devATlists.net>. No subscription is needed but
the mailing list is moderated and it can take some time to approve your
There are some very rarely met limitations at present: filesystems hav-
ing bad sectors, highly fragmented Master File Table (MFT), relocation
of the first MFT extent and resizing in the middle of some metadata in
some cases aren't supported yet. These cases are detected and resizing
is refused, restricted to a safe size or the closest safe size is dis-
ntfsresize schedules an NTFS consistency check and after the first boot
into Windows you must see chkdsk running on a blue background. This is
intentional. Windows may force a quick reboot after the consistency
check. Moreover after repartitioning your disk and depending on the
hardware configuration, the Windows message System Settings Change may
also appear. Just acknowledge it and reboot again.
ntfsresize has been written by Szabolcs Szakacsits <szakaATsienet.hu>.
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 and to
Theodore Ts'o whose resize2fs(8) man page formed the basis of this
ntfsresize is part of the ntfsprogs(8) package and is available from
http://linux-ntfs.sourceforge.net/ as source and precompiled binary.
ntfsresize related news, example of usage, troubleshooting, statically
linked binary and FAQ (frequently asked questions) is maintained at
fdisk(8), cfdisk(8), sfdisk(8), parted(8), mkntfs(8), ntfsclone(8),
ntfsprogs version 1.9.4 Mar 2004 NTFSRESIZE(8)