In the last time on every start of my Ubuntu 14.04 VM I'm getting the message

Low Disk Space

This computer has only 314.8 MB disk space remaining. You may free up some space by emptying the trash.

enter image description here

Now I've increased the disk space from 10 to 20 GB as described on the VirtualBox forum (first step).

M:\>"C:\Program Files\Oracle\VirtualBox\VBoxManage.exe" modifyhd "M:\VM\Ubuntu VM\Ubuntu VM.vdi" --resize 20480

I see, that the disk space has been resized successfully:

enter image description here

But when I start the machine and open GParted, only 10 GB are available.

enter image description here

So somehow the Ubuntu guest system haven't got the updated information about the disk space.

How to solve it and complete the disk space increase?

6 Answers 6


I finally found the solution here:

View all of the drives associated with VirtualBox

$ "C:\Program Files\Oracle\VirtualBox\VBoxManage" list hdds

For each associated drive use modifyhd:

$ "C:\Program Files\Oracle\VirtualBox\VBoxManage" modifyhd "D:\Pat\to\VM\Snapshots\{b0e3f93f-49fe-49bc-9ae2-79e80da6cf01}.vdi" --resize 20480

Now GParted sees the added space.

NOTE: The curly braced snapshot entries require the last forward slash to be changed to a backslash. Meaning:


instead of

  • 4
    I had to do this with both the main VDI and the Snapshot in Snapshots/ for this to work. I did just the snapshot first and fdisk showed the larger partition but pvcreate threw an error "Fatal error while trying to detect swap signature on /dev/sda3" I also only had one snapshot so you may need to either do it with the latest snapshot or all of them? ive not tested this but its working now
    – nick fox
    Oct 5, 2017 at 16:10
  • 3
    There is nothing in my Snapshots folder. Nov 1, 2017 at 14:08
  • @Timoth use the virtual midia manager to locate the snapshots.
    – lsborg
    Aug 2, 2018 at 17:17
  • 2
    Spot on! My problem was that I didn't run the script for the Snapshots too.
    – user901228
    Dec 8, 2018 at 14:41
  • This does not do the trick with version 6.06 of VirtualBox unfortunately. Ubuntu does not see the increases.
    – Beezer
    Jun 12, 2019 at 9:38

1) Open GParted tool

2) In the graphical interface you'll see existing partitions and an unallocated partition

3)Click the partition you would like to extend

4) In the top action bar you'll see an arrow directed right. Click it and you'll get option to extend the partition with the unallocated space


Try installing scsitools and re-scanning the devices

sudo apt-get install scsitools

sudo rescan-scsi-bus.sh

Then check the available space

sudo fdisk -l

Or use gparted if that's what you prefer. If you see the extra space extend the partition

And lastly extend the filesystem on the guest vm

resize2fs /dev/sda1
  • 1
    Thank you for your answer! I've tried it, but it didn't help.
    – automatix
    May 16, 2016 at 9:50

I had the same problem with a Ubuntu virtual machine. First, I powered off the machine. Then, I removed saved states, which are probably the reason why the virtual machine couldn't see the resized disk. Just to be sure, I updated the virtual space once more and started the virtual machine. Now, I can finally see the unallocated space.


Nearly had the same problem and were overall frustated. In my case it was nearly like @Ladislav Ondris.

I saved my Snapshots, but missed to log out and shut down the VM in the last Snapshot. So gparted ditn't showed anything free to resize.

After shutdown, and making new Snapshot. I could open gparted and he showed in the right corner the bigger disk space and i resized the old one.

... Happy over all.

  • Hello. Answer is not clear.
    – David
    Apr 9, 2022 at 16:57

I have found a solution that worked for me. I am on Elementary OS but i do believe is the same process. I installed the GNOME Disks where it could see all the available resized size but in another partition. Then on the first partition click the settings and then click resize: Resize partition

and expand to the size you want

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