My computer has taken a dive and it will not boot up. I have reasons to believe that it is the hard drive. I would like to run CHKDSK but I cannot get the computer to boot up into Windows.

My question is this: Is there a way to run CHKDSK from Ubuntu? I can boot into UBuntu using a USB and I can mount and see the hard drive contents (and access them). I was wondering if there is any way I can get chkdsk/r to run and see what happens. (Anyway I can get it to run inside or outside of Ubuntu)

  • 1
    If you have a Windows 7 install DVD, you can run chkdsk from there.
    – Patches
    Aug 6, 2011 at 23:17
  • No Disk. Did not come with computer.
    – L84
    Aug 6, 2011 at 23:24
  • You should check with the OEM and see if you can get a disk for future use. It may cost a few $$$, but you'd probably be back in business now if they had included one. Aug 6, 2011 at 23:52
  • What I learned is to create recovery media when you get your computer. I did not and learning the hard way.
    – L84
    Aug 7, 2011 at 0:42
  • I don't suppose you have another PC you can transplant the disc into temporarily to do the chkdsk? In my current experiences with windows 7 chkdsk has not been particularly useful in recovering non booting PCs but good luck.
    – Col
    Aug 7, 2011 at 7:57

4 Answers 4


Try this:

  1. Reboot the computer, and before the Windows logo comes up, press F8 a few times.
  2. When the menu comes up, select Repair Your Computer (or similar) at the top.
  3. When it's finished booting, select the Command Prompt.
  4. Run ChkDsk.

Another option (this is tedious):

  1. Download and install the Windows AIK.
  2. Create a bootable flash drive with Windows PE on it (it's slightly painful).
  3. Reboot using the flash drive, and run ChkDsk.

I would upload an image that I'd already made, but I don't believe I'm allowed to. :\

  • when I try that I get a black screen with a white cursor I cannot get to the Command Prompt Screen
    – L84
    Aug 6, 2011 at 23:25
  • @UBhapE2: When exactly does that happen? (After which step?)
    – user541686
    Aug 6, 2011 at 23:26
  • I Press F8 - I choose Repair Your Computer - It says Windows is Loading then I get a Black Screen with a White Cursor. It will not go past that point (I have let it sit at that screen for over 4 hours)
    – L84
    Aug 6, 2011 at 23:27
  • @UBhapE2: Ah, I see... Do you think you could try the Windows AIK approach? That's a really good way to run ChkDsk, but it's a little annoying.
    – user541686
    Aug 6, 2011 at 23:29
  • 1
    WOO HOO! DOwnload FInished... FINALLY! About XP I found this: "If installing the WAIK in Windows XP, you may need to install the .NET Framework 2.0 Setup and the MSXML 6.0 Setup before the WAIK will install." From this site: themudcrab.com/vistapeguide_waik.php MSXML 6.0 is incluided in (XP Service Pack 3) Now the next step...
    – L84
    Aug 7, 2011 at 1:35

Not per se. You can try running ntfsfix, part of NTFS-3G, but there is no proper replacement for chkdsk for NTFS drives.

  • 1
    ntfsfix also sets the bit that tells Windows to run chkdsk on startup, which may or may not help depending on at what point Windows stops loading.
    – Patches
    Aug 6, 2011 at 23:18
  • How do you run ntfsfix?
    – L84
    Aug 6, 2011 at 23:25
  • You open a terminal and type it in along with any relevant options. If the command isn't recognized then you'll need to install NTFS-3G, probably from the Ubuntu repositories. Aug 6, 2011 at 23:26
  • I think ntfsfix comes in the standard install now, it's run by doing ntfsfix /dev/devname the devname for windows is usually /dev/sda1 but you can get a list of your partitions and drives by doing ls /dev/sd* if it's a Sata hard drive.
    – Col
    Aug 7, 2011 at 7:59

You could try downloading the drive manufacturer's diagnostic utility, which you should be able to run from a boot disk. This would probably cover you for repairing bad sectors if that's the issue. However, if it's just messed up NTFS metadata, you'll probably need a Windows DVD to access repair tools.


You need a preinstalled environment.

I use Barts PE

Basically you need to run it on another computer running Windows, it will copy your installation files to a CD and make a bootable 'OS' on the disk which gives you a command prompt etc. This will let you run CHKDSK.

  • Please delete this answer: The linked website says: BartPE is no longer available! We have to move on! Thanks everyone for all your support throughout the years!!!
    – Tom Hale
    Jan 11, 2017 at 6:05

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