How to Open the Disk Management Console on a Windows PC

By Dan Gookin

Windows gives you an amazing array of tools to do advanced things with the hard drives on your PC. These aren’t regular, everyday types of activities but, rather, nuts-and-bolts, deep-tissue types of things. The Disk Management console is a special location in Windows where you can manage your PC’s storage devices.

To open the Disk Management console, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Control Panel.

  2. Open the Administrative Tools window.

    • In Windows 7, choose System and Security and then choose Administrative Tools.

    • In Windows Vista, choose System and Maintenance and then choose Administrative Tools.

    • In Windows XP, open the Administrative Tools icon.

  3. In the Administrative Tools window, open the Computer Management icon.

  4. In Windows Vista, click Continue or type the administrator’s password.

    The Computer Management window appears. It contains various consoles, which are kind of like mini-windows that use a specific format for displaying and controlling information.


  5. On the left side of the window, choose Disk Management.

    It’s beneath the Storage heading.

Be careful when you work with storage media on a technical level! You can easily and irreparably damage the media, losing data stored there. That’s a bad thing, especially for your PC’s main hard drive. Back up your data!