MiniTool is a Canadian software company that specializes in partition software. These days we have many types of secondary storage. There are Solid State Drive (SSD), Hard Disk Drives (HDD), SSHD, magnetic storage, and many other forms. But mostly in consumer and enterprise-level, we have HDD and SSD. Mostly we don’t always use one whole disk. We do partition and make separate drives according to need. This can be done easily in Windows but MiniTool Partition Wizard has many extra unique features that make it special. We used it for a few weeks and here is our review.
We all have partitions of our storage in our personal computers. Most of us have Windows or operating systems installed in Local Disk (C:). Similarly, we keep our other files, pictures, music in other drives or local disks such as (D:), (E:\), etc. These are mainly made by partitioning a hard drive or solid-state drive. These days many people install main OS or windows in a fast SSD so they just part out high capacity hard disk. However, some users might use just SSD or SSHD and make different volumes as per requirement.
Whatever the need is we need to make different volumes and we need tools for that. Microsoft Windows has an inbuilt tool for creating partitions. It has many other things as well but when we need to do the more complex tasks and need good features we use third-party software. This is where MiniTool Partition Wizard comes in. We tested this software on our desktop and laptop. Both systems have SATA SSD and HDD. The desktop has a 3TB hard disk so we get an idea of the GPT system as well.
Partition Wizard 11 Review
This time we are reviewing the free version of this software. The exact version is 11.6 and we are just simply downloading and testing for different scenarios. We are using freeware but the company sells pro or paid versions as well. This includes Partition Wizard Pro Edition, Server, Enterprise and Technician edition. Every version has its own perks but we are interested in the free edition because this is go-to for most people when they have a problem.
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The setup is very small and it is very light because after installation it takes less than 100 MB of space. This package comes with ShadowMaker which is an extra 107 MB. We wanted to see what that is so we installed it. But you can just install the wizard only. The startup screen is very simple and has a modern design. If provides easy access to popular and common features of this software. Some of these features are data recovery, partition recovery, disk cloning and migrating OS. The startup gives a glance and quick access only. We can close that as well and just launch the application to see details.
The developer of this application has made it very easy to navigate and work. There is an online manual and all icons are big and labeled. At the top bar, we have the main menu with all the functions. Then on the left side, there is a Wizard with popular functions. Each function is well guided and the software provides good information on steps and implications. At the center part, we see our disks and drives with their partitions.
Core features and addon functions
The core features of the Partition Wizard software is as expected. After selecting disk or drive, we get options in the top menu. If we need to do operation on the entire disk we can do that as well. This includes tasks such as aligning partition, data recovery, wiping, deleting and surface test. These depend on your BIOS and disk type also. GPT system is available in systems with UEFI BIOS so older systems may not have that.
For drive operation related partition features, we see resizing, extending, merging, splitting, wiping, deleting, formatting, copying, data recovery, and hiding. Other operations such as MBR to GPT conversion or NTFS to FAT conversion and vice versa are only available in the pro version. It means we do get basic operations in the free version of this application. The basic partitioning tasks such as splitting, extending and merging are very fast and safe. It depends on disk speed as well. SSD gets the job done faster than the older HDD.
There are some limitations in our tests. We couldn’t check the performance in a RAID system. Also, free software only allows 1024 MB to file recovery. The partition recovery also doesn’t allow the restoration of searched items. This is free software and they do sell premium versions as well. So we have to understand that this is common and for more, we need to pay. But we also got a good experience with this freeware.
The MiniTool Partition Wizard is a very light and small feature-rich software that has lots of good design, easier navigation and lots of tools for storage-related tasks. It does the most important work or partitioning, splitting, extending and merging well and fast. On top of these features, there are many other functions that can be useful in times of need. We are happy to see free software provides many features. As we do lots of work with computer hardware, we need a pro version so it is not enough for us. But for most of your regular users, it can be a great option.
We know there will be limitations in the free version of the application but we wish to see the limit of data recovery raised in the new version. That can really add more value to this and make it even better. Oe best feature we loved is OS migration. It helps to migrate your OS to a new SSD or HDD. Considering every aspect of this software, we are pleased with its power and recommend it to anyone looking for a freeware to work on their drives.