Fix 'Can't read from the source file or disk' error and regain access to your data

Abby Haines updated on May 31, 2019 to File Recovery | How-to Articles


Follow the two methods to fix 'can't read from the source file or disk' error in Windows 10/8/7. If you get this message while copying, moving or deleting files from PC to external storage devices such as USB/SD etc, relax. You can regain access to your data and fix 'can't read from source file/disk' error here now.

Error Message: Can't read from the source file or disk 

"My internal hard drive is full and it dramatically slows down my Windows 10 laptop. Then, I bought a new external hard drive and wanted to transfer some data from the PC to the new drive. So, I could free up more space. But when it gets to a certain point, it always says "Can't read from the source file or disk" and name a certain file that can't be read. Is there any way to fix the issue?"

Can't read from the source file or disk error

Many users have reported that they got "Can't read from the source file or disk" error message while copying, deleting or moving files from one location to another. For example from a PC to an external hard drive/SD card, USB flash drive, etc or vice verse in Windows 10/8/7. If you happened to be annoyed by this issue, please don't worry! The solution below may help you.

Firstly, recover data from the hard disk

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  • Recover deleted, formatted, and inaccessible data in different data loss situations.
  • Recover photos, audio, music, and emails from any storage effectively, safely and completely.
  • Recover data from the recycle bin, hard drive, memory card, flash drive, digital camera and camcorder.

Secondly, format the disk to permanently remove "Can't read from the source file or disk" error message

After retrieving all your files, you can try disk management tool to format your external hard drive, SD card or USB flash drive to permanently remove "Can't read from the source file or disk" error message. It easy and just takes simple steps!

  1. 1. Connect the device to PC.
  2. 2. Type Control Panel in the search box. Click "Control Panel".
  3. 3. Click "Administrative Tools".
  4. 4. Click "Computer Management".
  5. 5. Click "Disk Management".
  6. 6. Right-click on the drive or device to format and click on "Format".
  7. 7. Select the file system and set the cluster size.
  8. 8. Click "OK" to format the disk.

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Frequently Asked Qusetions

1. Why cannot I recover 2GB data for free?

It is recommended to check the version installed is Free or Trial because they are different versions.

Trial has data preview function but cannot save any files, while the Free version enables to recover 2 GB files. The default free space is 500 MB and you may share the product on social media to get another 1.5 GB.

2. Why cannot the recovered files be opened?

A file is saved as 2 parts on the storage device: directory info (which is comprised by file name, time stamp and size info, etc.) and data content.

If the files with original file names and folder structures cannot be opened, one possible reason is the corrupted directory info. There is still a chance to recover the data content with the RAW Recovery method in our software.

3. Why isn't it suggested to recover the files back to the original drive?

The storage structure of the lost files would be altered or damaged by any changes on the drive. If you save the recovered files back to the same drive, the original data structures and data content would be corrupted or overwritten, which causes permanent data loss. So you should prepare another disk to save the files.

4. How can I check whether my data is recoverable or not before purchase?

The Free version helps you save 2GB files to better verify the recovery quality of our product before purchase.

5. How long does it take to scan the drive?

It strongly depends on the capacity of your hard drive and the performance of your computer. As reference,most drive recoveries can be completed in around 10 to 12 hours for a 1-TB healthy hard drive in general conditions.

About Data Recovery Wizard

It's super easy to recover 250+ types of files after deletion, disk formatting and virus infection. Click the links and compare the difference of each version.