Many people said they need to delete a useless partition on their computer running Windows 10 (or other systems). What methods and tools should they choose? What happens when a partition is deleted? How to delete protected or recovery partitions on Windows 10? Please follow MiniTool Solution to get answers to those questions one by one.
It’s an easy and normal task to delete a file or folder on a computer. When you don’t need an item saved on your Windows 10 computer, you usually delete it by following ways:
- Locate the file or folder -> right click on it -> choose Delete.
- Locate the item -> select it -> press Delete or Shift + Delete on the keyboard.
- Locate the item -> drag and drop it to the Recycle Bin directly.
How to recover files deleted from Recycle Bin?
However, what about deleting a partition on Windows 10? Can you delete partition Windows 10? How to delete partitions Windows 10? What if you can’t delete partition Windows 10?
Remove or Delete Partition Windows 10
If your disk is running out of space, you may consider deleting unnecessary files, folders, and programs to release free space. But actually, it’s more efficient to delete a partition as a whole. When you don’t need a partition on Windows 10 anymore, you should delete it. Windows allows users to manage partitions (create partition, delete partition, extend partition, etc.) by themselves easily.
What Is a Partition (or Volume)
A partition refers to a section (a logical division) of the disk separate from other parts. A partition is also called a volume by a Windows operating system. Each partition has its file system which controls how data can be stored and retrieved.
What Does Disk Formatting Mean
Disk formatting is a necessary process to prepare your storage device (hard disk, SSD, USB drive) for initial use; you can divide a hard disk into several logical parts to store data by category. A storage drive must contain at least one partition before it can be used for data storage.
How To Deal With Micro SD Card Not Formatted Error – Look Here!
What about Windows 10 Delete Partition or Remove Partition
Microsoft provides several tools in Windows 10 for managing disks & partitions. Users can get them to delete partition or remove partition if it’s not needed anymore.
How to Delete Partitions Windows 10
Please delete the partition directly if all files in it are not needed. Otherwise, you need to transfer your useful data to another place and then start to delete partition Windows 10.
#1. Delete a Partition Windows 10 Using Disk Management
How to delete a partition in Windows 10 (the most frequently used method):
- Open Disk Management as you usually do. You can press Windows + X and select Disk Management. (What if the WinX menu is not showing up?)
- Navigate to the disk that contains the partition you want to delete. (This step is not necessary if you only have one disk mounted on your computer.)
- Locate the target partition and right click on it.
- Select Delete Volume from the context menu you see.
- A prompt window will show up to tell you deleting partition (removing partition) will erase all data on it so that you need to back up data first. Please click Yes to continue.
After that, the partition is deleted and the space occupied by it is released as unallocated space. You can then use it to extend an adjacent partition.
#2. Remove Partition Windows 10 Using the Command Prompt Tool
How to remove partition with the volume command:
- Press Windows + S to open Windows search.
- Type cmd into the search box.
- Right click on Command Prompt in the search results.
- Select Run as administrator.
- If you see an User Account Control window, click Yes to allow the app to make changes to your device.
- Type diskpart and press Enter.
- Type list volume and press Enter.
- Type select volume * (* represents the volume number) and press Enter.
- Type delete volume and press Enter.
- Wait for it to complete.
How to delete a partition with partition command?
- Run Command Prompt as an administrator.
- Type diskpart and press Enter.
- Type list disk and press Enter.
- Type select disk * (* represents the disk number) and press Enter.
- Type list partition and press Enter.
- Type select partition * (* represents the partition number) and press Enter.
- Type delete partition and press Enter.
- Wait for a moment.
How to recover lost files using CMD (the Command Prompt tool):
#3. Delete Partition Windows 10 Using PowerShell
How to delete partition on your computer by using PowerShell:
- Right click on the Start button in the lower left corner of your PC screen.
- Select Windows PowerShell (Admin) from the pop-up menu.
- Click Yes when you see the User Account Control window.
- Type Get-Volume and press Enter.
- Wait for a few seconds and the partitions list will appear.
- Type Remove-Partition -DriveLetter * (* stands for the correct DriveLetter in the list) and press Enter.
- Type Y and press Enter to confirm the action.
Well, how to delete partitions if they’re not assigned with a drive letter?
- Run Windows PowerShell as an administrator.
- Type Get-Disk and press Enter.
- Type Get-Partition –DiskNumber * (* stands for the number of the target disk) and press Enter.
- Type Remove-Partition -DiskNumber * -PartitionNumber * and press Enter.
- Type Y and press Enter to confirm the deletion.
#4. Delete Volume or Partition via Settings
- Open Settings by pressing Windows + I or in other ways.
- Select System from the Settings window.
- Shift to the Storage option in the left panel.
- Click on the Manage Disks and Volumes link in the right panel.
- Browse the disks and expand the one containing the partition/volume you want to delete.
- Select the partition and click on the Properties button appeared.
- Go to the Format section and click on the Delete button under it.
- Click Delete volume to confirm your action.
That’s all about how to remove a partition Windows 10 using different tools.
Note: There’s also another method for deleting partitions on any Windows system: using third-party disk managers like MiniTool Partition Wizard. It offers the Delete Partition feature to help people delete a partition or delete all partitions Windows 10 in simple steps.
Bonus Tip: What Happens When You Delete a Partition Windows 10
If you delete a partition (or volume) on a disk, the space occupied by it will be released and marked as unallocated. You could then use the unallocated space to create new partitions or extend another partition on the same disk.
Can you delete a partition without losing its data?
Of course, no. Though deleting a partition is very similar to deleting a file or folder (you select the file/folder -> click Delete -> all contents are gone), they are very different actions.
- Files or folders deleted from the hard drive will be sent to Recycle Bin and you can recover them easily.
- All the files saved on the deleted partition will disappear; you lose access to all files. But you can still recover them with a powerful data recovery tool; the steps to recover data from a deleted partition will be shown to you later in this article.
Can You Delete a System Protected Partition
Generally speaking, the above methods are enough to delete a partition on Windows 10 (or other Windows operating systems). But when you attempt to delete some “special partitions”, you’ll end up in failure. You still have some system protected partitions on your disk, in addition to the ordinary data partitions. You can’t see them in Windows Explorer since they are hidden by default.
- EFI System Partition: referred to as ESP, it is a small partition (usually around 100MB) you can find on a hard disk drive or solid-state drive. It is formatted with FAT32 and used by computers adhering to the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI). The UEFI firmware will start to load files saved on the ESP to initialize the installed operating systems and various programs & applications whenever the computer boots up.
- Recovery Partition: the recovery partition is a partition you can find on the system hard drive; it’s able to help you restore the factory settings of your operating system (OS) when a system failure occurs. No drive letter is assigned to the recovery partition, so you can’t see it in File Explorer. (How to fix the operating system not found error?)
- OEM Partition: the OEM partition is considered as the factory default recovery section; the OEM partition is similar to the recovery partition, they are both designed for system recovery or factory restore. If system failures occur, it can help you restore your system to its original state without using the OS installation disk. You can usually find this partition on an HP, Dell, or Lenovo computer.
- System Reserved partition: the special “System Reserved” partition will be created when you install Windows on a clean disk. Also, it’s not assigned with a drive letter. It contains the boot manager & boot configuration data and the startup files used for BitLocker drive encryption. (What about the BitLocker drive encryption recovery?)
- GPT Protective Partition: the GPT Protective Partition is a hard drive partition protected by the GUID partition table, not a system related partition. You are not allowed to access the GPT Protective Partition or perform any operations on it.
Can I Delete EFI System Partition
4 main components are included in the EFI system partition: boot loaders, system utilities, device drivers, and data files. The EFI system partition is where the Windows operating systems can start from, so you shouldn’t delete it unless you’re in 2 special cases:
- You want to delete the EFI system partition from an external hard drive or backup hard drive.
- You have installed two or more operating systems (two or more ESP have been created) and you plan to delete one of them.
Is It Safe to Delete Recovery Partition Windows 10
As mentioned earlier, the recovery partition only stores the files necessary for restoring the computer’s factory settings and it is not needed unless any system failures or problems occur. So it’s safe to delete a recovery partition without affecting the running OS. (How to recover data from disk without OS?)
Is It Safe to Delete Healthy OEM Partition
The OEM partition that usually comes with HP, Dell, or Lenovo is only created by computer suppliers to store some software or one-click factory restore settings. This partition is often not useful, so users can delete it to release more disk space. Thus, the answer is yes, you can delete a Healthy (OEM Partition) without causing any computer issues.
How to Delete a Protected EFI System Partition
If you really need to delete system protected partitions, you should follow the steps below.
Delete a protected EFI system partition using DiskPart:
- Right click on the Start button or press Windows + X to open.
- Select Run from the WinX menu.
- Type diskpart into the textbox.
- Click OK or press Enter.
- Click Yes in the User Account Control window to continue.
- Type list disk and press Enter.
- Type select disk * (* stands for the disk number) and press Enter.
- Type list partition and press Enter.
- Type select partition * (* stands for the disk number) and press Enter.
- Type delete partition override and press Enter.
- Wait until you see this message: DiskPart successfully deleted the selected partition.
- Type exit and press Enter to close DiskPart.
DiskPart related issues:
- Recover data lost by DiskPart clean
- DiskPart has encountered an error
Recover Deleted Data or Partition on Windows
This part teaches you how to recover the lost data from a deleted partition and how to recover all deleted partitions on a disk.
How to Recover Data from a Deleted Partition
Step 1: download suitable data recovery software like MiniTool Power Data Recovery.
Step 2: double click on the setup program to start installing the software.
Step 3: follow the on-screen instructions to finish the installation process.
Step 4: run the software and select Hard Disk Drive from the left pane.
Step 5: specify the disk that contains the deleted partition. Double click on it or select it & click Scan.
Step 6: wait for the scan and browse the scan results.
Step 7: check the files and folders you want to recover. Then, click Save.
Step 8: specify a storage path for the selected items and click OK.
Step 9: wait until all the files you need have been recovered to the appointed place. Now, you can close the recovery software.
How to Recover Deleted Partitions on Disk
Step 1: download MiniTool Partition Wizard.
Step 2: install and launch the software.
Step 3: select the disk that contains the deleted partitions from the right panel.
Step 4: click Partition Recovery Wizard from the left sidebar.
Step 5: click Next and follow the wizard to select disk -> set scanning range -> select scanning method. Then, wait.
Step 6: select all the partitions you need (both deleted partitions and existing partitions) from the scan results and click Finish.
Step 7: you can assign a letter for the recovered partition(s) by using the Change Drive Letter feature if you want to see the partition in File Explorer. (This step is optional.)
Step 8: click Apply in the upper left corner of the main window and wait for the operations to complete.
This post first introduces partition/volume to you. Then, it tells you how to delete partition(s) Windows 10 by using different methods. After that, it displays some special types of system protected partitions you may encounter and tells you whether they can be deleted or not. Finally, it provides 2 methods to help you get back lost data from the deleted partitions easily. Hope this can help you get out of the woods.