I have a VM running Ubuntu, and I wish to increase its size from 20 to 40 GB.

I powered off the VM and on the VMware side increased the allocated disk space. I did this by Edit Virtual Machine Settings -> Hard Disk -> Utilities and so forth. It then warned me that I should increase the partition size within the guest VM.

Looking at the disk usage analyzer inside of Ubuntu, it only currently sees the original 20 GB. How do I increase this to the 40 I allocated?


1 Answer 1


As it says, you need to increase the partition. Resizing the virtual disk, just changes how big partitions can be. You can't resize an active filesystem so the easiest way to do this is:

  1. Boot the VM to a LiveCD ISO of Ubuntu (what you installed from should do but a later/earlier ISO will work too)
  2. When asked click Try Ubuntu
  3. Load gparted aka Gnome Partition Editor. I think it's installed on every CD but you might have to grab it from the Software Centre.
  4. Find your disk, right click it and go through the resize wizard.
  5. Restart the VM without the LiveCD and you should have more free space.
  • Thanks for your response. How do I boot the VM from the live cd? I have downloaded the ISO and mounted it to VMware's cd rom, but I'm not sure how to make the ubuntu VM boot from that
    – coffee
    Aug 9, 2011 at 15:24
  • Mash F2 when it starts to boot (when the VMWare logo is on the screen). It'll either give you a BIOS screen where you can change the boot order, or a plain boot menu that'll let you select the CD.
    – Oli
    Aug 9, 2011 at 16:26
  • Is there a faster way to access the LiveCD desktop? It's so slow and I can't get anything to refresh or run since it's trying to display the desktop via the VMWare ESX Console. Any way to speed this up?
    – Valien
    Jul 9, 2013 at 20:09
  • You might find yourself stuck at step no 4 and unable to resize the root partition since the swap partition is "in the way". What helped for me was to delete the swap partition, increase the size of the root and then create a new swap. Note: I am a newb when it comes to linux so backup before u try this and maybe someone can comment if my approach is correct.
    – s.Daniel
    Oct 26, 2013 at 15:04
  • @s.Daniel: you can move the swap partition to the rightmost in Gparted. The key is that you should move it in the enclosing extended partition, not just select the swap partition.
    – user280121
    May 30, 2015 at 4:38

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