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Fixing Hard Drive Problems with Chkdsk in Windows

With all the files and documents, we have to work on and store these days, life would get difficult without a hard drive. Yes, that is the first thing that comes to most of the minds when we think of the word ‘Hard Drive’. The better the storage, more space, complete back up these are just the things we associate a hard drive with. But what happens when you are facing hard drive problems?

The quickest thing to do is fix it. After all, we do not want to lose any of the important documents on it. Although we are quick to fix it, we have never associated Check Disk Utility to anything remotely close to the issue. If you have no idea what it is and what it can do but are wondering will that be able to solve the issue? Then the answer is Yes.

Check Disk Utility (Chkdsk):

Check Disk Utility or Chkdsk basically scans the entire hard drive to find and fix the problems on your hard drive. To be specific Chkdsk verifies or scans your file system for any logical file system errors. When we talk of errors it’s in reference with corrupted entries that can vary right from bad security descriptors associated with files to the entries in volume’s Master files table (MFT). It also scans every sector on the disk volume searching for bad sectors.

Bad sectors are an important aspect to take into consideration that is because Bad sectors are in two forms:

1. Soft Bad sectors:

This usually occurs whenever data is badly written and Chkdsk generally, attempts at repairing the soft Bad sectors.

2. Hard Bad sectors:

This usually occurs whenever there is some physical damage to the disk. The purpose of scanning through Chkdsk is so that it marks all the hard Bad sectors thereby those will not be used again.

Now that you know What is Chkdsk and its purpose in fixing hard drive problems. Let’s figure out on how to go about it.

There are two ways to do this and they are:

Method 1 – You can run the Chkdsk tool from Windows.

Method 2 – You can use the Command Prompter

Method 1

1. Open the File Explorer and right click on Local Disk.

2. When you do that in the pop up menu click on Properties.

3. Immediately a small window opens in that on the small tab with many options given click on, Tools. When you do that right below it, you can click on Windows Check button.

Method 2

1. All you need to do is Press the Windows Key + X this will bring up the power users menu. Then you can click on Command Prompt (Admin) option from that menu.

2. Immediately a User Account Control window will open asking permission to allow this app to make changes to you PC. You can click on Yes.

3. Now, from the Command Prompt, you can type in the command Chkdsk and then space and the letter of the drive you want to repair. In this example let’s assume its internal drive C.

4. Now, you have managed to get the command in Windows running, it is now time to fix the issue. And to be able to do so, you need to type the following letters after your drive letter i.e., chkdsk C: / f / r / x

Over here ‘/ f’ parameter is to tell chkdsk to fix the errors it finds. Similarly ‘ / r’ is for locating the bad sectors on the drive and to recover all the readable information there is and ‘ / x’ forces the drive to dismount before the process starts.

Remember, that as long as your computer is in use chkdsk cannot examine the system’s boot driver. If the target drive is a boot disk then the system will ask you if you want to run the command. Type Yes when you do so it is easier for the command to run and gain full access to the disk i.e., even before the operating system loads.

 Important Note: This is for Windows 10, if you are using Windows 8 or 7 then there is a slight difference that you need to know.

Windows 8, 7 or XP:

1. Here, all you need to do is go to Start Menu and on the right click on Command Prompt.

2. When you do that in the pop up menu click on Run as Admin.

Now you can go ahead and follow the above-mentioned steps.

Also, remember that Chkdsk command can at times take a long time but this is on the basis of the size of the drives.

While you are trying to fix the hard drive issues and you realize that you have lost important data. In such a case just know that there is an easy, user-friendly tool to retrieve data after formatting C drive. Click on the link given and find the immediate help you need.   

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John Harris

Senior Editor, Content Analyst and a fan of exceptional customer service. John develops and publishes instructional and informational content regarding partition management, Windows hot-fixes, data management and computer troubleshooting.

As a tenured data recovery specialist, John shares exceptional insights and blog posts about data loss and data recovery across any storage device. With 8+ years’ experience in writing for Data Recovery for both Mac OS and Windows OS computers, he is an avid learner who always wants to polish and simplify the data recovery process. John passes his free time playing Chess and reading Science Fiction novels.

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