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this is happening on 1 of my users WinXP notebook.

in WinXP: I did a "chkdsk c: /F" chkdsk runs during the next reboot, fixes errors and completes successfully. however subsequent "chkdsk c:" checks in windows still yields errors. I repeat the cycle a few times and the errors still show.

so I used a Vista/Win7 bootdisk and ran "chkdsk c: /F" errors are fixed and subsequent "chkdsk c:" yields NO ERRORS.

does anyone have any ideas why I get different results with WinXP's chkdsk as compared to the Vista/Win7 version?

I have also used smartmontools to check. SMART attributes are ok. nothing is flagged.


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CHKDSK tends to detect physical problems with the disk. To ease your mind, download the appropriate hard drive diagnostic tool for your brand of drive and run a thorough test. you may just find that there are some bad sectors on the disk.

A list of utilities can be found here for different manufacturers:

It may be that booting the drive in XP attempts to write to a portion of the disk that is defective creating file system errors, whereas booting from the win 7 DVD doesn't really access the drive, so once the errors are "fixed" they stay fixed...until you boot from the drive into XP again.

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the hdd is a Toshiba MK2556GSYF SATA. but all those tools listed on Toshiba's website don't work. I can't get the tools to scan the hdd. it seems that this drive is not supported or something. bummer... – szeli Mar 1 '12 at 7:32
Try the Hitachi Drive fitness test from the link above or the direct link HERE It will allow you to test almost any drive from the bootable CD. – G Koe Mar 1 '12 at 13:50
  • First, under XP, it's better to run CHKDSK with the /r switch:

/f Fixes errors on the volume /r Locates bad sectors and recovers readable information and implies /f

  • Then, in W7, boot to the Windows Recovery Environment and run chkdsk c: /p

    (Warning: don't use /r in this environment! Read Caution on use of /R switch in the quoted article)

  • According to a user comment in a MS TechNet librairy article about CHKDSK

Under Windows 7 it may happen that chkdsk runs randomly when starting up. If it does not find any failures and this should happen seemingly without any reason it's probably a bug. There is no reason to panic! your drive is alright.

It seems that some Antivirus products or/and steam under Windows 7 are responsible for that behaviour. There is as far as i know no solution to this problem.


Since the s.m.a.r.t. data report no failures you may assume the hard disk is "OK" at the hardware level.

At the Operating System level, the difference between the results of W xp and W7 CHKDSK is, may be, a bug of the W7 chkdsk version...

Finally if your system under Wxp and W7 runs with no "strange" problems such as freezing in read/write operations on the HD AND there's any Event errors in the event viewer with the source "Hard disk", you may assume the HD is in a good state.

Hope this help. Let us know.

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When chkdsk is in read-only mode (i.e. the /f switch is not passed) its results are not 100% reliable. It can and will report false positives (corruption detected,) but not false negatives.

Read-only CHKDSK will abort before it completes all three phases if it encounters errors in earlier phases and is prone to falsely reporting errors when in read-only mode. That is, CHKDSK may report that a disk is corrupted even when there is no real corruption present. This can happen if NTFS happens to modify areas of the disk on behalf of some program activity that CHKDSK is examining at the same time. To verify a volume correctly, the volume must be in a static state, and the only way to guarantee that state is to lock the volume. CHKDSK only locks the volume when /F or /R (which implies "F") is specified. Thus, you may need to run CHKDSK more than once to get it to complete all stages in read-only mode.

(emphasis added.)

Further reading.

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Hi Amazed. Unfortunatelly, It seems your link ("further reading") is not good... :-/ – climenole Mar 1 '12 at 6:57
Works for me: – Andrew Lambert Mar 1 '12 at 7:00
! :-/ Now working for me too. Thank you Amazed. :) – climenole Mar 1 '12 at 7:06

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