Hard Drive Won't Boot in Windows 10? Fix it Fast!

If your hard drive won't boot in Windows, don’t worry, this article will introduce the reasons and provide 5 effective ways to fix this issue accordingly.


By Lori / Updated on April 2, 2024

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Have you encountered this situation where you see a black screen when you start your computer with the error message "DISK BOOT FAILURE - INSERT SYSTEM DISK AND PRESS ENTER”.

Disk Boot Failure

This message means that BIOS cannot read your disk. If you are experiencing disk boot failure in Windows 10, don't worry, there are ways to fix it. In this article, we will e explain reasons for disk boot failure and introduc 5 ways to fix the issue hard drive won't boot.

Reasons for Hard Drive Won't Boot

Before we learn how to fix hard drive won't boot issue, let’s first discuss the reasons why the hard drive won’t boot. Here are 6 common reasons.

1️⃣ Corrupted Boot Sector: Some viruses can damage not only files but also the boot sector of the hard drive. If the boot sector is damaged or you accidentally deleted boot partition, the hard drive won't boot.

2️⃣ False BIOS Boot Order: The BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) searches for the bootable hard drive based on its boot device order. If this sequence is incorrect, the computer won't find the bootable drive.

3️⃣ Damaged Hard Drive: Physical damage or corruption of the hard drive or its partitions can lead to the unbootable hard drive, affecting the entire booting process.

4️⃣ Improper Hard Drive Configuration: Even with a new hard drive, improper configuration can cause boot failure.

5️⃣ Incorrect Connection: Incorrectly plugging in the hard drive can also make the hard drive won't boot.

6️⃣ Windows System Failure: A hard drive won't boot may occur when there's a failure in the Windows operating system, disrupting the normal boot-up process.

Phase 1. How to Fix Hard Drive Won't Boot in Windows (5 Ways)

You don’t have to be afraid of the error Windows won’t boot from hard drives because there are 5 ways to fix it. Please carefully apply the various methods discussed below.

Way 1. Remove Newly Installed Hardware

If you add new hardware, there may be incompatibilities between the old and new hardware. As mentioned earlier, improper configuration can cause the hard drive won’t boot. Let's see what to do:

❌ Warning: The 3 points below are independent solutions to fix the hard drive won’t boot in Windows10.

1️⃣ Remove the newly installed hard drive from the computer and restart your computer.

2️⃣ Check the hard drive cable for installing the operating system. Make sure they are connected correctly.

3️⃣ Check the hard disk jumper.

Way 2. Make a Bootable Media to Boot your PC (Faster)

As we mentioned above, if your Windows computer has no boot partition, you may find that the hard drive won’t boot. In this case, you could use MyRecover to create bootable media and fix this issue.

  • Prepare another working Windows PC to download and install MyRecover.
  • Since the data saved on the USB flash drive will be formatted and all data on it will be lost, you'd better use a blank USB flash drive. Or you can use AOMEI Backupper Standard for free whole disk backup to protect your USB files.
Download Software Windows 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download

Here are the steps to create a bootable disk via MyRecover.

Step 1. Download and install MyRecover

Download, launch MyRecover and click "Crashed PC Recovery".

crashed pc recovery

Step 2. Select a path to execute

Select a way to create the bootable disk according to your needs and click "Execute".



You can create a Windows PE-based boot disk in three ways.

  • USB boot device: Create a bootable USB device.
  • Export ISO file: Use this method to make a bootable ISO file. After exporting the ISO, you need to use a third-party burning program to burn it. Or, you can use the ISO to boot some virtual machines or burn them to other devices.
  • Burn to CD/DVD: Create a bootable CD/DVD.

"Add Drivers" allows you to manually add other necessary drivers to the bootable disk so that more devices are available after starting WinPE.

Step 3. Format the USB flash drive

Upon selecting the method, an information window will appear. The USB flash drive needs to be formatted and all data on it will be lost. If there is important data in it, please make a file backup first. If you confirm, click Yes to continue.

confirmation window

Step 4. Create a bootable USB disk

The creation operation will begin and you can check the creation process. The progress of creating a WinPE bootable USB drive will take a few minutes.

creation process

Step 5. Complete the process

Upon completed, a success message will be displayed. Also, you will be notified of the steps to boot from a bootable disk and then recover from crashed PC.


Way 3. Change the BIOS Boot Order

Normally, your computer will boot from the first boot device set in the BIOS. If you do not set a drive as the first bootable device, the computer will not boot from that drive. In this case, you need to check and change the BIOS boot sequence.

Step 1. Restart the computer and repeatedly press the key (Esc, Del, F10, F2, F8, or F12) to open the BIOS.

Step 2. Select the Boot tab and you will see system devices in order of priority.


Step 3. If the hard drive is not first in the boot order, move it to the top of the list. Save these settings and restart your computer.

Way 4. Run Startup Repair

If you still cannot boot from the hard drive after changing the boot order correctly, your operating system or system disk may be damaged. Therefore, you can use the Windows repair feature to repair your operating system automatically. Here are the steps:

Step 1. Connect the Windows installation media (CD/DVD or bootable USB) to your PC to enter Windows RE (Recovery Environment). Click Next.

Step 2. On the Windows Setup window, choose Repair your computer.

Repair Your computer

Step 3. Go to the Advanced options > Startup Repair. Wait a few seconds and it will fix common Windows boot issues.

Startup repair

Way 5. Run CHKDSK to Repair Corrupted Disks

CHKDSK is a Windows utility that scans hard drives, fixes errors, and detects bad sectors. You can use the Windows command line tool-CHKDSK to fix the hard drive won't boot in Windows caused by damage to the operating system or system disk. Here are the steps to run CHKDSK.

  • Sometimes you may find that CHKDSK deleted files, causing some files to become inaccessible and unrecoverable. Please see the next phrase to recover data from hard drives.

Step 1. Connect the Windows installation media (CD/DVD or bootable USB) to your PC to enter Windows RE (Recovery Environment). Click Next.

Step 2. On the Windows Setup window, choose Repair your computer.

Repair Your computer

Step 3. Go to the Advanced options > Command Prompt.

Advanced Options

Step 4. After opening the command window, type chkdsk *: /f and press Enter. (replace * with the letter of your hard drive that won’t boot),

Cmd Chkdsk

Phase 2. How to Recover Data From Hard Drives?

After going through the above ways, you may have solved the hard drive won’t boot issue. However, the above repair methods may cause data loss on your hard drives. Or, you want to recover deleted/lost files from hard drive. We recommend you use MyRecover, an efficient and simple data recovery tool to recover data from hard drives quickly.

Hard Drive Data Recovery Software
  • Recover 200+ file formats: Recover deleted Microsoft Word, Excel, PPT, PDF, PPTX, ODP, CSV, WPS files, and so on.
  • Support all brands of external hard drives (HDD/SSD): Seagate, Acomdata, Asus, Toshiba, LaCie, SanDisk, Samsung, ADATA, Transcend, etc.
  • Quick Scan & Deep Scan can find all your deleted or lost data from hard drive.
  • Support NTFS, FAT32, exFAT, and ReFS file systems in Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, or Windows Server PC.

Here are the steps to recover lost and deleted data from hard disks.

Step 1. Download and launch MyRecover

Download and run MyRecover on your Windows. Hover the mouse over the drive saved deleted files before, and click Scan.


Step 2. Scan for deleted or lost files

MyRecover will scan your hard drive automatically and thoroughly to locate all the found data. Try to use the Search Box or the Filter feature to quickly locate the data you want to recover.


🌟Tip: Preview or filter date depending on Files Type, Size, Date, etc.

Type: Select the file type (Documents, Images, Videos, Audios, Mails, Webpages, Compressed files, etc.)

Date modified: Set the date (today, yesterday, last 7 days, last 30 days, and custom.)

Size: Filter the file size (<128KB, 128KB~1MB, 1MB~ 512MB, 512MB above, etc.)

Step 3. Select files and click recover

You will see a list of data that MyRecover found on your hard drive. Select the files you want to recover and click Recover x files.


Step 4. Select a new location

Choose a new location to save the recovered files and click Select Folder to confirm it. Your files will be recovered in a few minutes, depending on the size of your data.

Select Location


  • To recover a large number of deleted or lost files from your hard drives, please consider upgrading MyRecover to the Pro or Tech edition to enjoy unlimited recovery size.
  • Also, this powerful data recovery tool can help you recover files from SSD that won’t boot.


With the above 5 effective ways, you can fix the hard drive won’t boot in Windows 10 easily. Among these workable methods, MyRecover is the most effective solution. It not only helps you fix the hard drive won’t boot issue but also helps you recover lost or deleted files from hard drives if you find they are lost during the repair process.

Also, if concerns about potential data loss arise in the future, try to use this free Windows backup tool AOMEI Backupper Standard. It can create a file backup and help you restore files from backups quickly.


What are signs that a computer hard drive is failing?
Signs of a failing computer hard drive include logical and physical failure signs.

Physical failure signs may include overheating, unusual noises, blue screen errors, inability to boot, and bad sectors.
Logical failure signs involve frequent error messages, disappearing or corrupt files, system crashes, changed file or folder names, and an unbootable operating system.
How to fix "Disk boot failure" in Windows 10?
You can fix the error disk boot failure in Windows 10 via 5 ways below.

Way 1. Check the Boot Order
Way 2. Use System Restore
Way 3. Use Startup Repair
Way 4. Use Command Prompt
Way 5. Remove Newly Installed Hardware
How to fix hard drive detected in bios but won't boot?
You can ensure correct boot order/priority in BIOS, disable other drives in BIOS, disable secure boot, and load optimized defaults in BIOS.
How to recover data from a PC/laptop hard drive that won't boot?
You can manually get files off hard drives that won’t turn on.

Step 1. Remove the unbootable hard drive from the computer and connect it to a working PC.
Step 2. Read and access hard drive data.
Step 3. Copy files from the non-bootable hard drive to another storage device.
How to prevent hard drive won’t boot issues in Windows 10?
To prevent hard drive won't boot issues in Windows 10:

1. Regularly back up data.
2. Keep the system and drivers updated.
3. Avoid sudden power outages or system shutdowns.
4. Use check tools to check the health of the hard drive regularly.
5. Maintain a clean and healthy operating system environment.
Lori · Editor
Lori receives professional technical training since joining AOMEI, and aims at helping users troubleshoot problems on data recovery and protection. She focuses on simple, efficient and practical methods, and provides professional advice. Being able to help readers and users is her ultimate goal.