Hard drive errors caused by power outages, hardware failure, system crash, or human error can lead to drive inaccessible, data loss or subpar performance. How to free check and fix hard drive error Windows 10? This article tells how to scan and resolve hard drive problems to its utmost by running CHKDSK Windows 10 in 4 methods.

Many Windows users check their hard drives regularly as disk error will slow down or damage a hard drive in an accumulated way. The best way to check and fix hard drive errors or bad sectors to keep it healthy is to use Windows built-in CHKDSK utility – a useful hard disk scanning and repair utility which helps to examine hard drives for errors and repair them.

What Is CHKDSK Utility

Some users may don’t know what CHKDSK is and how to run it. Actually, CHKDSK is the abbreviation of Check Disk, which is a system tool provided in Windows, OS/2 and DOS to check file system integrity of a partition and fix logical file errors.

CHKDSK can help you fix hard drive errors caused by bad sectors, improper or sudden shutdowns, corrupted software and meta data corruption. Whenever you have hard drive errors like you need to format the partition before you can use it caused by improper shutdown of the machine or abnormal removal of USB drives, you can use CHKDSK to find out errors and fix them.

Then how to repair hard drive windows 10 with CHKDSK utility? Here I will illustrate you 4 ways to run Windows 10 Check Disk utility and fix hard drive errors.

Method 1. Run Check Disk Windows 10 from Partition Property

You can run Windows 10 CHKDSK from Windows desktop and the detailed steps are as below.

Step 1. Right-click Windows Start Menu and select Disk Management to open it.

Step 2. When you get the main interface of Disk Management, you can select the drive that you want to check and fix, then right-click it and choose Property.

click property

Step 3. On the Tools tab, click Check.

click Check on the Tools tab

Step 4. If the system detects that there are errors, you will be asked to check the disk. If no errors are found, you will see a message as shown in the following picture. You can still choose to check the drive if you want to. Click on Scan drive.

click scan drive

Step 5. Windows will display a message as below after completion. If no errors are found, it will say no error found. Then click Close to exit it. If there are some errors found on the drive, Windows will ask for a restart to fix the errors.

click Close

Method 2. CHKDSK Windows 10 with Elevated Command Prompt.

CHKDSK Windows 10 with elevated Command Prompt performs a couple of functions. Although running it may take some time, it does prevent hard disk from being damaged and loss of data in the long term. It is recommended to run it whenever Windows has shut down abnormally or hard disk performs abnormally.

Step 1. Input cmd in the Windows 10 Cortana search box. Right-click the best match then select Run as administrator.

Step 2. In the elevated Command Prompt, type CHKDSK *: /f (* represents the drive letter of the specific drive that you want to scan and fix) and then press Enter. This CHKDSK Windows 10 command will scan your computer drive for errors and try to fix any that it finds.

Here I take CHKDSK e: /f as an example (e represent the drive letter that I want to scan). The bellowing picture shows there is no file system error with the partition. If there is any hard drive errors detected, CHKDSK will help you fix it automatically.

run CHKDSK e: /f

Tip: If you want to check and fix the partition that being used, you may see “CHKDSK cannot run because the volume is in use by another process. Would you like to schedule this volume to be checked the next time the system restarts?” in the Command Prompt Windows.
Type Y and press Enter to comfirm, and then restart your computer to continue with the CHKDSK repair. C drive and system partition will always ask for a reboot.

Step 3. Input exit to exit the Command Prompt Window after performing all operations.

Note: The command supports a number of hard disk operations, but we mainly focus on two of them: /f and /r.

/f – fix any errors it detected

/r – Locate bad sectors on the drive and try to recover any and all readable information from them

Apart from commonly used /f and /r, you can choose the following parameters valid for both FAT32 / NTFS partition when running the CHKDSK utility from an elevated Command Prompt.

  • /v – Display list of every file in every directory on FAT32 partition. On NTFS, it displays the cleanup messages.
  • /x – force the volume to dismount. Also invalidates all open file handles. This should be avoided in Desktop Editions of Windows, because it may cause data loss/corruption.

The following are valid for NTFS volumes only.

  • /c – skip checking of cycles within the folder structure.
  • /I – perform a less vigorous check of index entries.
  • /L[:size] – change the size of the log file to specified number of kilobytes. If size is not specified, it will display current size.
  • /b – re-evaluates bad clusters on the volume (implies /R)

Besides, CHKDSK cannot repair hard bad sectors, in which case, data can get lost and become unusable. If you have very important files and data stored on the drive, you’d better backup the hard drive as this occasion could happen sometimes.

If you cannot boot up your computer, you can run the tool from Command Prompt either by booting your computer into the Recovery Mode or by using the original installation disc to run Command Prompt (For detailed steps, please see Method 4). If you can, you may also run CHKDSK repair with third-party software, but be sure to choose a reliable one.

Method 3. Windows 10 CHKDSK Repair with Third-party Software

If you are not familiar with commands or find that using commands is error-prone as it requires you to input every command correctly, in this way, you can use a free CHKDSK repair alternative to repair hard drive Windows 10. It is recommended to use MiniTool Partition Wizard Free Edition, which makes CHKDSK Windows 10 as a breeze.

MiniTool Partition Wizard Free Edition is an easy-to-use partition manager. Its Check File System function can scan through your hard drive and fix all errors detected. It is not as complicated and time-consuming as running CHKDSK in Command Prompt. And it is simpler to operate with its intuitive interface.

Apart from Check file system function, it can also perform other operations like format partition, resize partition, extend partition, copy partition/disk, convert MBR to GPT without data loss, wipe disk, convert FAT to NTFS.

Note: This function can only be used when the selected partition has a drive letter. For the partition without drive letter, you should appoint it a drive letter and then use this function.

Next, let’s see detailed steps about how to run CHKDSK Windows 10 to fix hard drive error with third-party software.

Step 1. Download MiniTool Partition Wizard Free Edition by clicking the following button. Install it on your computer and launch it to get the main interface.

MiniTool Partition Wizard FreeClick to Download100%Clean & Safe

Then select the target partition, and choose “Check File System” from the Check Partition group or from Partition menu.

check file system

Step 2. You will see a new window with two options: Check only and Check & fix detected errors. If you only want to check, select Check only; if you want to recover mistakes during the checking process, select Check & fix detected errors. After that, click Start button. Once you click Start, MiniTool Partition Wizard will check/fix file system immediately.

click Start to check file system and fix

This page shows that MiniTool found no problems. If there is an error detected by MiniTool Partition Wizard, just let Partition Wizard fix it.

Method 4.Run Check Disk Windows 10 from Installation Disc/USB drive

The above three methods show you how to run CHKDSK when your computer can boot up successfully. However, if Windows won’t start, how can you check disk Windows 10?

Well, in this case, you can run CHKDSK on boot and check the hard drive for errors via Windows installation disc or USB drive. By following the steps as below, CHKDSK utility can be accessed easily.

Note: If you don’t have Windows 10 installation disc or USB flash drive to run CHKDSK, you can also run CHKDSK on MiniTool Partition Wizard Bootable Edition, which is very light and user-friendly.

Step 1. Insert Windows 10 installation disc or USB flash drive with Windows.

Step 2. Change the BIOS boot sequence to boot from the disc or USB drive.

Step 3. Select your language performance and click Next.

Step 4. Click Repair your computer.

Step 5. Then choose Troubleshoot on this page.

click Troubleshoot

Step 6. On the Advanced options page, click Command Prompt to open it.

choose command prompt

Step 6. When you successfully open the Command Prompt, you can follow the steps in Method 2 to execute CHKDSK commands.

After reading the 4 free methods in this post, I’m sure that you have learned how to use Windows 10 CHKDSK utility to repair hard drive errors. Now try one of them to complete hard drive repair by yourself.

“After reading this post, I learned how to repair hard drive Windows 10 with CHKDSK utility. People who don’t know how to run CHKDSK utility to fix hard drive error may check this post.”Click to Tweet

Wrapping Things Up

Have you fixed your hard drive with CHKDSK utility? Hope CHKDSK will help you fix all kinds of hard drive problems, and you can go back using your computer normally.

If you have any question about how to repair hard drive error with Window 10 Check Disk utility or if you have other better solutions, you can leave a message in the following comment zone and we will reply as soon as possible. If you need any help when using MiniTool software, you may contact us via [email protected].

CHKDSK Windows 10 FAQ

How do I run chkdsk in Windows 10?
To run chkdsk, please type cmd in the Windows 10 Cortana search box. Right-click the best match Command Prompt and select Run as administrator. In the command prompt window, type chkdsk e: /f (e represents the drive letter of the specific drive you want to scan and fix). Then CHKDSK will scan your drive and fix detected errors automatically.
Which is better chkdsk R or F?
Chkdsk /f will scan your drive and fix any errors it detected. Chkdsk /r will locate bad sectors on the drive and try to recover any and all readable information from them. Chkdsk /f will only check and fix disk errors, not bad sectors. So, chkdsk /r is better.
What is chkdsk f command?
Chkdsk /f is a Command Prompt command that is used to check a target drive on your computer and fix any hard drive errors it detects. Apart from chkdsk f, chkdsk /r is also commonly used to detect sectors on the hard drive and recovers any information still intact.
How do I repair my hard drive Windows 10?
Open Disk Management, select the drive that you want to check and fix, then right-click it and choose Property. On the Tools tab, click Check. Then it will scan your drive for hard drive errors and repair hard drive Windows 10 automatically.
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