CHKDSK not Working? Try Top 4 Easy Ways Here and Get 1 Tip

You are capable to tackle the CHKDSK not working issue in 4 easy ways offered in this article. Also, try the best backup freeware to always create a copy of your PC to avoid system failure.


By Clytze Updated on October 25, 2022

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What is CHKDSK?

If your system shuts down on its own or you encounter frequent system crashes like blue screen on Windows 11, your computer may experience system file corruption over time. At this point, you need a tool called CHKDSK to help you check for problems.

CHKDSK’s full name is check disk, which is called by the system to check the disk when your system crashes or is shut down illegally, or it can be called manually from the command line to check a particular disk partition.

However, when users like you run this command to check the corrupted system files, they find that the command CHKDSK won't run on Windows 10. Why does this happen? Next, I’ll explain to you the reasons in detail.

CHKDSK not Working

Why does CHKDSK not working problem appear?

The CHKDSK command not working error will give different error messages for different reasons. There are 4 common error messages you may encounter when you fail to run CHKDSK:

  • Windows cannot run disk checking on this volume because it is write-protected
  • The type of the file system is RAW. CHKDSK is not available for RAW drives
  • CHKDSK cannot continue in read-only mode
  • CHKDSK cannot run because the volume is in use by another process

Or other reasons like – a disk containing too many fragmented files, a corrupted hard drive file system, or some bad sectors on the disk itself may cause this problem. Or you just have not chosen to run as administrator to operate this command line.

In the following part, let’s check the fixes in turn to tackle this issue without effort and rerun the CHKDSK command successfully.

How to fix CHKDSK not working issue

In the following part, I’ve checked and summarized 4 easy ways for you to fix the CHKDSK doesn’t work issue without effort. Before that, there are 2 helpful tips you should be alert.

Helpful tips:

  • The CHKDSK command can only find logical errors in the file system, not physical disk errors. To find physical disk errors, you should use the SCANDISK program.
  • Do not use CHKDSK when there are files open, for CHKDSK is designed to assume that disk files are closed. Therefore, if you run CHKDSK when a file is open on disk, you will interpret inconsistencies in the directory structure and file allocation table as errors, which can lead to data loss or file system corruption.

Fix 1. Format RAW Drive using Diskpart

When your hard drive or storage media becomes RAW, running CHKDSK will fail and you will get a message “The type of file system is RAW. CHKDSK is not available for RAW drives”. In order to get it back in use, you will need to convert the RAW file to NTFS or another Windows compatible file system by formatting it. When you format your drive, you can assign a new file system to it, thus making it usable.

Note that formatting the drive will delete all its contents. Therefore, be sure to backup the necessary data. If there is no data on it or you don’t need the files, you can directly format your hard drive.

1. Press Windows + R, type diskpart, and hit Enter.

2. Enter the following commands hitting Enter after each line:

list volume

select volume * (* means the volume number of the RAW drive)

format fs=ntfs quick (or format fs=fat32 quick, replace ntfs with fat32 or exFAT based on your preference)


Format Raw Drive

Fix 2. Defragmenting the disk

The longer you use your hard drive, the more likely you are to create more disk fragmentation. Disk defragmentation is the process of putting many fragmented files all together and aligning them neatly, which can reduce file reading time and increase hard drive reading speed and is also good for CHKDSK to be able to run successfully. Follow the given steps to perform disk defragmentation.

1. Search Defrag in the search box, and then select Defragment and Optimize Drives.

2. Select the drive you want to defrag, then click the Optimise button.

Defragment Hard Disk

Fix 3. Run SFC and DISM scan properly

System File Checker (SFC) is a tool that finds and repairs corrupt or missing system files in the system file directory, thus repairing registry corruption. DISM, on the other hand, is usually used to check and repair system image files and to detect and clean registry entries. When you encounter the problem that CHKDSK not fixing errors, you can try to run SFC and DISM scan to solve the problem. The specific steps are as follows:

1. Open Windows Start and type cmd in the search box. Select command prompt and Run as administrator.

2. In this prompt, type SFC /scannow and press Enter. Wait for the scan process to complete.

Sfc Scannow

3. Run command prompt again, input DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth and press Enter. When the operation is complete, re-run CHKDSK as administrator to check if it works properly now.

Fix 4. Disable Write Protection

If you got the error message of “Windows cannot run disk checking on this volume because it is write-protected”, it means that you cannot run CHKDSK on a write-protected external drive. Thus you need to check if there’s any write protection switch on the drive and make sure to disable it. Follow the steps below to do it:

1. Press Windows + R, type diskpart, and hit Enter.

2. Enter the following commands hitting Enter after each line:

list disk

select disk * (Replace * with the disk number)

attributes disk clear readonly


Disable Write Protection

3. when you close the window, rerun CHKDSK to see if it can work rightly.

Further reading: backup computer hard drive for disaster recovery

You should be alert to the fact that many unpredictable problems may occur while using your computer such as 100% Disk Usage in Windows 11, which will be very irritating and frustrating if they cannot be solved by some fixes. Therefore, you need to always backup your computer's important files or data to be able to restore it to a normal state in case of an irreparable failure.

Here, I strongly recommend you apply the best free backup & restore solution named AOMEI Backupper Standard designed for Windows 11/10/8/7/XP/Vista to safeguard your data security. With its assistance, you can automatically backup your disks, operating systems, files, and partitions to various locations such as internal/external hard drives, USB, SSD, as well as cloud and NAS devices at a daily, weekly, and monthly frequency.

Now, you can click the button below to download AOMEI Backupper Standard version to your computer, and follow the wizard on the screen to create a backup of your disks easily. If you are running Windows Server, then AOMEI Backupper Server is suitable for you.

Download FreewareWin11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

To make a backup of computer disks with AOMEI Backupper, just go to the main interface, and click Disk Backup under the Backup tab. And then follow the instructions to accomplish the backup task with ease.

Disk Backup

✜ Restore computer once you have a backup in hand

If your computer appears some problem related to CHKDSK not working on internal/external hard drive, and after you tried the fixes but them do not work at all. In such cases, you may need to restore your PC backup to normal time with the created backup image. To enable this, use the Restore feature in the home page.

Select Task

Final thoughts

Now, you may grab the 4 simple solutions to fix CHKDSK not working issue offered in this post. You need to alert that computer data is always fragile and vulnerable, so you need to backup your computer regularly for disaster recovery. In case you face a disaster and the problem fixes do not work, you can use the pre-created backup to restore your computer with the help of AOMEI Backupper.

It is also working as the best disk migration tool, you can use it to clone SSD to SSD on Windows 11 without effort. Now try it by yourself.

Clytze · Editor
Clytze, an editor at AOMEI Technology, is passionate about safeguarding your digital world. She dedicates her expertise to empower users like you in data security and recovery. She firmly believes that everyone should have the tools and knowledge to protect their digital assets through computer backup, seamless disk cloning, and efficient file synchronization. Clytze is your trusted guide on the journey to data safety.