How to Locate and Recover Data From Bad Sectors

Recover data using chkdsk in recovery console in Windows XP

What to Know

  • Open Recovery Console > wait for Command Prompt > enter chkdsk /r > press Enter.
  • Next: Wait for Recovery Console to finish scanning the drive and recover readable data. Restart the PC.

This article explains how to use Recovery Console in Windows XP to locate and recover data from bad hard drive sectors.

If you can, in fact, access Windows normally, you can run the Windows equivalent of the chkdsk tool. See How to Scan a Hard Drive Using 'Error Checking' for help.

How to Recover Your Data

Follow these easy steps to use Recovery Console tools to locate and recover data from bad sectors on your hard drive.

  1. Enter Windows XP Recovery Console, the advanced diagnostic mode of Windows XP, with special tools that will allow you to find and recover bad sectors.

    In short: Boot from the XP CD, and when setup starts, press R.

  2. When you reach the Command Prompt, type the following command and then press Enter.

    chkdsk /r
    chkdsk /r Recovery Console Command Results
    "chkdsk /r" Recovery Console Command Results.
  3. The chkdsk command will scan your hard drive for any damaged sectors. If any data is readable from any bad sector found, chkdsk will recover it.

    If you see a "CHKDSK found and fixed one or more errors on the volume" message, chkdsk did actually find and correct some unspecified problem. Otherwise, chkdsk didn't find any problems.

  4. Take out the disc, type exit, and then press Enter to restart the computer.

    Assuming bad hard drive sectors were the cause of your problem and chkdsk was able to recover data from them, Windows should now start normally.

Was this page helpful?