The facts about CHKDSK

Have you encountered a CHKDSK error? Do you know what is CHKDSK program and CHKDSK errors?. CHKDSK errors usually occurs whenever windows detects a problem with the file system on your hard disk. Windows tries to repair it by running the CHKDSK application. The fact about CHKDSK program is that eventhough it can repair such error it sometimes misdiagnose the cause of the problem and often make things worse.

The most frequent reason why windows launches CHKDSK is when the computer  was not properly shutdown. This can be caused by power blackouts, computer crashing, or just by simply turning off the computer without shutting down windows first. The most common things that causes CHKDSK errors are logical errors in the file system, bad sectors on the hard disk, lost clusters, cross-linked files, and directory errors. Viruses can also cause CHKDSK errors. All these things can lead to problems with Internet Explorer, files being corrupted or lost, and make the PC lag or even freeze up.

Windows scans the hard disk to look for corrupted sectors or file system errors and then it automatically fix the error before the operating system boots up. Unfortunately, this automation can be a problem in cases where running CHKDSK makes things worse.

Hey slavezero you said that CHKDSK can make problems worse, how can CHKDSK make problems worse when it repairs errors? as I’ve said earlier CHKDSK sometimes misdiagnose the real cause of  the problem. The thing is sometimes CHKDSK does not or cannot fix those errors and it often leads to a more serious problems when the program applies a wrong solution. Just Imagine a plumber trying to fix a leak that is actually being caused, not by the pipes, but by a hole in the roof.

In the process of CHKDSK attempting unsuccessfully to correctly rewrite a non-existent file system problem on a physically damaged sector of the hard disk, the data contained in that sector may become fragmented, corrupted, and irreparable. Consequently, files that may have been recoverable are now hopelessly scrambled. If those files are crucial operating system files, the PC can be damaged beyond repair, with the only repair option left being a complete reinstallation of Windows.

What can I do to prevent such damage? The great solution is backup before you try to repair anything. In Windows 95 and 98, an older version of CHKDSK (called Scandisk) will search the hard disk for problems and then ask you if you want to repair any errors found. As it is the repair process that can corrupt data on damaged hard drives, simply selecting “no” will avoid any problems. In Windows 2000/XP/Vista, however, CHKDSK will automatically try to repair any errors found without asking you first. To abort CHKDSK, simply press the ESC key within 10 seconds after it starts running. From there, your PC will continue to boot into Windows. Once in, you can back up you important files to another media (such as CD or DVD) before trying to fix the hard disk problems.