Some Windows users reported that they couldn't create a recovery drive on a USB flash drive or a local drive. If you get this error message, "We can't create a recovery drive. A problem occurred while creating the recovery drive", it means that creating windows 10/8/7 recovery drive failed.

error we can't create a recovery drive

Don't worry. Here, we have found practical solutions to help you out. Check out why and find fixes for "can't create the recovery drive" now:

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
Fix 1. Prepare another USB flash drive Unplug the old USB drive and plug the new big...Full steps
Fix 2. Disable antivirus software Open antivirus software on your computer and...Full steps
Fix 3. Repair system files corruption Press Windows + X, and click...Full steps
Fix 4. Check and format the USB drive Enter This PC, right-click your USB drive...Full steps
Fix 5. Run DISM tool Press Win Key + X, click Command Prompt...Full steps
Fix 6. Create in another way Back up Windows OS and then restore...Full steps

Applies to: Fix the recovery drive creation gets stuck, fails, and sends the error message "We cannot create a recovery drive". 

Why Can't I Create a Recovery Drive 

Windows recovery drive, basically is a DVD or USB drive with copied Windows OS, which is widely used to access a failed Windows system and restore the failed or crashed Windows 10/8/7 immediately. 

If you get the "we can't create a recovery drive" error, it could be the listed reasons below that block you from success:

  • The option 'back up system files to the recovery drive' requires at least a 16GB USB flash drive.
  • Antivirus blocks you from creating the recovery drive.
  • The USB flash drive is corrupted or the Windows file system has corrupted.
  • Windows cannot format everything on the drive to create a recovery drive.
  • When the winre.wim file gets lost or deleted, you will also see the error message.
  • Can't create windows 10 recovery drive some required files are missing.

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How to Fix We Can't Create Recovery Drive on Windows 10

So how to fix the "We can't create a recovery drive" error on your computer? Based on the above-listed causes, we've found 6 practical solutions for you: 

  1. #Solution 1. Prepare another USB flash drive
  2. #Solution 2. Disable Antivirus software
  3. #Solution 3. Check & repair system files corruption
  4. #Solution 4. Check and format the USB drive
  5. #Solution 5. Run DISM tool
  6. #Solution 6. Create a USB recovery drive in another way

Solution 1. Prepare Another Big USB Flash Drive

Basically, creating a recovery drive with Windows system files requires you have a big USB drive. As for Windows 10 64bit, the drive should be at least 16GB in capacity.

Note: We would suggest you use a 32GB or even bigger USB for creating the recovery drive in Windows 10/8/7.

Step 1. Unplug the old USB drive and plug the new big one into PC.

Image of USB

Step 2.  Start to recreate a recovery drive to your USB drive in the same way.

For a step-by-step guide, click and follow this link for help: Windows 10 recovery USB Drive.

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Create Windows 10 Repair Disk from Another Computer

Some users also want to ask 'Can I use a recovery disk on a different computer in Windows 10?' Click and get the answer here.

image of easeus todo backup

Solution 2. Disable Antivirus software

Sometimes the antivirus software on your computer may block certain operations. Temporarily disable your antivirus software and try to create a recovery drive once again to see if it helps. 

Step 1. Open antivirus software on your computer and disable them.

Diable antivirus

Step 2. Open Windows Defender, disable to antivirus feature.

Note: If you have successfully created a recovery drive after closing the antivirus software, you should re-enable it as soon as you're done. 

Solution 3. Check & Repair Corrupted System Files

Corrupted system files will block Windows from accessing your external USB drive.

Try to run a System File Checker (SFC) scan to check for any file corruption. SFC scan will scan for corrupt system files on the computer and repair them.

Step 1. Press "Windows + X", click "Command Prompt (Admin)".

Step 2. In the Command Prompt, type the command sfc /scannow and then press "Enter".

Run FSC to fix system file error that cause can't create recovery drive error

Solution 4. Check and Format USB Drive

To make sure that the USB is available for creating the recovery drive, it's necessary to check its health state and format the flash drive with below steps:

Step 1. Back up all of your USB drive content, connect the USB drive to the computer.

Step 2. Enter "This PC", right-click your USB drive, and choose "Format".

Step 3. Click "File System" and use the drop-down arrow to select FAT32 for the drives.

Step 4. Tick "Quick Format" and click "Start".

Format USB drive to FAT32

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How to Format 128GB USB to FAT32

Sometimes, your USB is too big (32GB or bigger) that you can't format it using File Explorer or Disk Management. Click and get help here.

Solution 5. Run DISM Tool

DISM tool stands for Deployment Image Servicing and Management. You can run this tool through CMD and try again.

Step 1. Press Win Key + X, click Command Prompt (Admin).

Step 2. Type dism.exe /online /cleanup-image /scanhealth and then press Enter.


Wait for the operation to complete and you'll see the "The operation completed successfully" message.

Step 3. Type dism.exe /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth and press enter.

It will take some time to finish.

Solution 6. Create USB Recovery Drive in Another Way

The last but effective way that you can try is to create a Windows USB recovery drive in another way. It is to turn to a third-party bootable USB creation tool to solve the problem of Windows can't create a recovery drive.

EaseUS system backup software - EaseUS Todo Backup can help. It's a perfect alternative to replace Windows recovery drive that you can back up Windows OS and then restore the computer anytime from the bootable disk when your OS cannot boot up. 

See how to run this intuitive software and flexibly create an OS backup plan for your computer and restore the OS any time now: 

#1. Back Up Windows OS

Step 1. Launch EaseUS Todo Backup on your computer, and click Create Backup on the home screen and then hit the big question mark to select backup contents.

backup outlook mail step1

Step 2. To back up your Windows operating system, click "OS" to begin the backup task.

backup outlook mail step2

Step 3. Your Windows operating system information and all system related files and partitions will be automatically selected so you don't need to do any manual selection at this step. Next, you'll need to choose a location to save the system image backup by clicking the illustrated area.

system backup

Step 4. The backup location can be another local drive on your computer, an external hard drive, network, cloud or NAS. Generally, we recommend you use an external physical drive or cloud to preserve the system backup files. 

backup outlook mail step4

Step 5. Customiztion settings like enabling an automatic backup schedule in daily, weekly, monthly, or upon an event, and making a differential and incremental backup are available in the Options button if you're interested. Click "Backup Now", and the Windows system backup process will begin. The completed backup task will display on the left side in a card style.

backup outlook mail step 5

After creating the image backup of your OS, you can create a WinPE disk on your USB flash drive. If your computer can't create a recovery drive, you can try to boot your computer from the WinPE disk.

#2. Create USB Recovery Drive Alternative - Bootable Disk

Step 1. Prepare a USB drive which can be written and read.

Create emergency disk

Step 2. Launch and install EaseUS Todo Backup on the Computer B.

Step 3. Find and click "Tools" and choose "Create Emergency Disk".

Create Emergency Disk

Step 4. Choose the Boot disk location. You can create an ISO file, a bootable USB or CD/DVD disc.

Create emergency disk step2

Step 5. Then click "Create" to start.

When you finish creating this USB bootable disk, you can always restore your computer to a healthy state. 

Fixing "Can't Create a Recovery Drive" Is Possible, Take Action Now

On this page, we explained the main reasons that may prevent you from creating a Windows recovery drive. And don't worry if you get the "We can't create the recovery drive" error. 

We've collected 5 manual solutions to fix this issue. And if none of them work, you still have the last option - turning to third-party system backup software - EaseUS Todo Backup for help.

It's efficient and reliable to rescue your system from sudden OS crashes or failure errors anytime.

FAQ on Windows 10 Can't Create Recovery Drive

How do I reset my computer when it says Cannot find recovery environment?

If your computer says it cannot find the recovery environment, you can restart it with the command prompt.  To do this, press "Windows + R" on your keyboard and type "cmd". In the command prompt, type "C: \windows\system32\restore\rstrui.exe" and hit enter. This will open the System Restore Wizard. From here, you can choose a restore point and follow the instructions to reset your computer. If you don't have a restore point, you can try using the "Startup Repair" option in the Recovery environment.

Is it necessary to create a recovery drive in Windows 10?

Creating a recovery drive will give you a place to store your recovery image and files. This is helpful if you ever need to reinstall Windows 10. 

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Updated by Larissa

Larissa has rich experience in writing technical articles and is now a professional editor at EaseUS. She is good at writing articles about data recovery, disk cloning, disk partitioning, data backup, and other related knowledge. Her detailed and ultimate guides help users find effective solutions to their problems. She is fond of traveling, reading, and riding in her spare time.

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Written by Jean

Jean is recognized as one of the most professional writers in EaseUS. She has kept improving her writing skills over the past 10 years and helped millions of her readers solve their tech problems on PC, Mac, and iOS devices.

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