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How to Open or Repair Corrupted Hard Disk without Formatting in Windows 10/8/7

Updated on Nov 13, 2018 by Abby Haines to Data Recovery


This article provides two methods to help you repair corrupted hard disk without formatting by CMD in Windows 10/8/7 and recover files and repair internal/external hard disk by formatting. If you need to restore fancy data from corrupted hard disk, just download the best hard drive recovery software to get your lost data back and follow solutions here to repair corrupted internal/external hard drive without formatting now.

Overview of Repairing Corrupted Hard Disk Without Formatting

Sometimes, your hard drive can be damaged and become unrecognized or inaccessible in Windows 10/8/7 due to various reasons, no matter it is an internal Hard disk used on a laptop/desktop or an external hard drive used as a storage device. Here are some common causes and symptoms of hard drive corruption.

  • External hard drive not recognized, reading or showing up while plugging into PC.
  • Get "X:\ is not accessible. The file or directory is corrupted and unreadable" error message.
  • The hard drive has a drive letter in My Computer but becomes inaccessible and says: "You need to format the disk in the drive before you can use it".
  • The hard drive becomes RAW and prompts 'disk needs to be formatted' error.
  • Hard disk shows 0 bytes.
  • Others.....

How to Repair Corrupted Internal & External Hard Disk Without Formatting in Windows 10/8/7

When you encountered one of the above situations, you have to repair corrupted hard disk to make it work usually. It would be quickly done by formatting. But if you have essential data on the device, you may want to open or repair corrupted internal hard disk without formatting. So you can protect your files. Fortunately, chkdsk command prompt in cmd can help you manage it efficiently in Windows 10/8/7.

To fix and recover corrupted external hard disk using cmd, follow these steps:

Step 1. Press Windows Key + X button to bring up the power users menu.
Step 2. In the power users menu, select the Command Prompt (Admin) option.
Step 3. Click Yes when you are presented with a UAC window requesting permission to launch the Command Prompt as Administrator.
Step 4. In the new Command Prompt window, type chkdsk E: /f /r /x. Here you should replace E with your drive letter.

This option will run chkdsk to check and repair disk errors in Windows 10. The "/f" parameter tells CHKDSK to fix any errors it finds; "/r" tells it to locate the bad sectors on the drive and recover readable information; "/x" forces the drive to dismount before the process starts. 

Recover Files and Repair Corrupted Internal & External Hard Drive by Formatting

If chkdsk command prompt in cmd cannot help, here is an alternative solution to repair corrupted external hard drive without formatting. That is recover data from the corrupted hard drive and fix the disk by formatting. Having no data loss risk, it just works as well as accessing hard drive without formatting. Here, EaseUS free data recovery software which performs well to recover files from the external hard drive without formatting in Windows 10/8/7 can do you a favor.

To recover files from the external hard drive without formatting, follow these steps:

Step 1. Choose the external hard drive

Since you're going to recover data from the external hard drive, run EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard and under the External Devices tab, choose the exact drive where you lost data. Click Scan.

select external hard drive

Step 2. Scan for lost data

The software will start immediately to scan all over the selected drive for all lost data. During the scan, you could see more and more data showing up in the results.

scan external hard drive

Step 3. Preview and recover data

After the scan is over, check the scan results for the desired data. You can preview the file by double-clicking on it. Click Recover and choose another location to save the recovered data.

preview and recover data