How to Use the Graphical Chkdsk Interface
In addition to using the command-line version of Chkdsk, you can run Chkdsk from My Computer or Windows Explorer.
Click Start, and then click Computer.
Right-click the volume you want to check, and then click Properties.
Click the Tools tab, and then click Check Now.
Do one of the following:
- To run Chkdsk in read-only mode, clear all check boxes, and then click Start.
repair errors without scanning the volume for bad sectors, select the
Automatically Fix File System Errors check box, and then click Start.
repair errors, locate bad sectors, and recover readable information,
select both the Automatically Fix File System Errors and Scan For And
Attempt Recovery Of Bad Sectors check boxes, and then click Start.
will run immediately if the volume is not in use and then display the
results in a dialog box. If the volume is in use, Chkdsk will request
that you schedule a disk check for the next time the computer is
After running, Chkdsk adds the results to the Application Event Log with a source of Chkdsk, as shown in Figure 1.
The Event Log entry will contain the entire Chkdsk output, including
details about any changes made to the volume. To determine if a
computer has had ongoing disk problems, search the Event Log for older
Figure 1. Chkdsk results are stored in the Application Event Log.
How to Determine Whether Chkdsk Is Scheduled to Run
Vista might also configure Chkdsk to automatically run at startup if it
detects problems with a volume. Volumes that Windows Vista determines
need to be checked are considered “dirty.” To determine whether a volume is considered dirty, run the following command at a command prompt:
For example, to determine whether drive C is considered dirty, run:
You can also use the Chkntfs
tool to prevent a dirty volume from being checked at startup, which is
useful if you want to avoid the time-consuming Chkdsk and will not be
at the computer during startup to bypass Chkdsk. For more information,
run the following at a command prompt:
Chkdsk Process on NTFS Volumes
you run Chkdsk on NTFS volumes, the Chkdsk process consists of three
major stages and two optional stages. Chkdsk displays its progress for
each stage with the following messages:
Windows is verifying files (stage 1 of 5)...
File verification completed.
CHKDSK is verifying indexes (stage 2 of 5)...
Index verification completed.
CHKDSK is verifying security descriptors (stage 3 of 5)...
Security descriptor verification completed.
CHKDSK is verifying file data (stage 4 of 5)...
File data verification completed.
CHKDSK is verifying free space (stage 5 of 5)...
Free space verification completed.
The following list describes each of the Chkdsk stages.
Stage 1: Chkdsk verifies each file record segment in the master file table
stage 1, Chkdsk examines each file record segment in the volume’s
master file table (MFT). A specific file record segment in the MFT
uniquely identifies every file and directory on an NTFS volume. The
percent complete that Chkdsk displays during this phase is the percent
of the MFT that has been verified.
percent complete indicator advances relatively smoothly throughout this
phase, although some unevenness might occur. For example, file record
segments that are not in use require less time to process than do those
that are in use, and larger security descriptors take more time to
process than do smaller ones. Overall the percent complete is a fairly
accurate representation of the actual time required for that phase.
Stage 2: Chkdsk checks the directories in the volume
stage 2, Chkdsk examines each of the indexes (directories) on the
volume for internal consistency and verifies that every file and
directory represented by a file record segment in the MFT is referenced
by at least one directory. Chkdsk also confirms that every file or
subdirectory referenced in each directory actually exists as a valid
file record segment in the MFT and checks for circular directory
references. Chkdsk then confirms that the time stamps and the file size
information associated with files are up-to-date in the directory
listings for those files.
complete that Chkdsk displays during this phase is the percent of the
total number of files on the volume that are checked. For volumes with
many thousands of files and folders, the time required to complete this
stage can be significant.
of stage 2 varies because the amount of time required to process a
directory is closely tied to the number of files or subdirectories
listed in that directory. Because of this dependency, the percent
complete indicator might not advance smoothly during stage 2, though
the indicator continues to advance even for large directories.
Therefore, do not use the percent complete as a reliable representation
of the actual time remaining for this phase.
Stage 3: Chkdsk verifies the security descriptors for each volume
stage 3, Chkdsk examines each of the security descriptors associated
with each file and directory on the volume by verifying that each
security descriptor structure is well formed and internally consistent.
The percent complete that Chkdsk displays during this phase is the
percent of the number of files and directories on the volume that are
The percent complete indicator advances relatively smoothly throughout this phase, although some unevenness might occur.
Stage 4 (optional): Chkdsk verifies file data
stage 4, Chkdsk verifies all clusters in use. Chkdsk performs stages 4
and 5 if you specify the /r parameter when you run Chkdsk. The /r
parameter confirms that the sectors in each cluster are usable.
Specifying the /r parameter is usually not necessary because NTFS
identifies and remaps bad sectors during the course of normal
operations, but you can use the /r parameter if you suspect the disk
has bad sectors.
The percent complete
that Chkdsk displays during stage 4 is based on the percent of used
clusters that are checked. Used clusters typically take longer to check
than unused clusters, so stage 4 lasts longer than stage 5 on a volume
with equal amounts of used and unused clusters. For a volume with
mostly unused clusters, stage 5 takes longer than stage 4.
Stage 5 (optional): Chkdsk verifies free space
stage 5, Chkdsk verifies unused clusters. Chkdsk performs stage 5 only
if you specify the /r parameter when you run Chkdsk. The percent
complete that Chkdsk displays during stage 5 is the percent of unused
clusters that are checked.
3. How to Use the Disk Cleanup Wizard
Disk Cleanup (Cleanmgr.exe), you can delete unneeded files and compress
infrequently accessed files. This tool is primarily useful for
resolving problems that might be related to a shortage of disk space.
Insufficient free disk space can cause many problems, ranging from Stop
errors to file corruption. To increase free space you can do the
To run Disk Cleanup, follow these steps:
Click Start, and then click Computer.
Right-click the drive you want to clean, and then click Properties. On the Properties dialog, click Disk Cleanup.
Click either My Files Only or Files From All Users On This Computer.
On the Disk Cleanup tab, select the files to delete, and then click OK.
4. How to Disable Non-volatile Caching
Vista is the first Windows operating system to support caching hard
disk data to non-volatile cache on hard disks with the required cache.
Windows Vista can use the cache to improve startup performance, improve
the performance of frequently modified system data, and reduce
utilization. In rare circumstances, the failing non-volatile cache
might cause problems. To eliminate the possibility that the
non-volatile cache is causing problems, you can disable different cache
functionality using the following Group Policy settings (located in
Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\System\Disk NV Cache):
Turn Off Boot And Resume Optimizations Enable this policy to prevent Windows Vista from using the non-volatile cache to speed startup times.
Turn Off Cache Power Mode
Enable this policy to prevent Windows Vista from putting disks into a
non-volatile cache power-saving mode, which enables the hard disk to
spin down while continuing to use the non-volatile cache.
Turn Off Non Volatile Cache Feature Enable this policy to completely disable all use of the non-volatile cache.
Turn Off Solid State Mode
Enable this policy to prevent frequently written files such as the
system metadata and registry from being stored in the non-volatile