How to Repair Corrupted Internal Hard Disk without Formatting?

If the internal hard disk has been corrupted, you can read this article and we will demonstrate how to repair corrupted internal hard disk without formatting it effectively.


By Emily / Updated on May 12, 2023

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Overview of corrupted internal hard disk

An internal hard disk is the primary storage device, holding the OS and other pre-installed programs. It decides whether your computer and system can run successfully. But similar to external hard drives, the internal hard disk sometimes also gets corrupted. When that occurs, your computer won’t boot successfully. So, how to repair corrupted internal hard disk? Before that, you may want to know why it happens and how can you tell the internal hard disk is damaged.

Common reasons:
The hard disk is infected by some unexpected or unknown viruses.
The hard disk suffers a sudden power failure during working.
The internal hard disk has some bad sectors.
The MBR of the internal hard disk gets damaged.
Improper human operations: hitting the hard disk by accident, frequently formatting it or dropping it down, etc.
The computer hard disk is overheated and very hot.

Typical symptoms:
Computer system will not able to boot up properly and pop out some error messages like “Operating System ▸Not Found”, “Invalid Partition Table” and “Missing Operating System”.
Computer shut down suddenly, or reboot on its own.
Computer often freezes all of a sudden.
Hard disk drive becomes RAW partition.
You are frequently asked to format the disk every time when you attempt to access it in Windows Explorer.
Hard disk generates strange sounds during working.

How to repair corrupted internal hard disk without formatting?

Since the internal hard disk contains OS and other important data, many users are looking for a way to fix corrupted internal hard disk without formatting. Or you can use a data recovery program like Recoverit to restore them and make a backup before they are gone forever.

Here, we will show you how to repair an internal hard disk via Command Prompt as well as a free partition manager. Both tools provide methods to fix damaged corrupted internal hard disk without format. Now let’s get started...

1. Fix corrupted internal hard drive using CMD (Require Windows Disc)

Built-in Windows 11/10 CMD is a very useful tool, with which you can check and fix bad sectors and repair damaged MBR on the internal hard disk. But how to open Command Prompt window? That depends on whether your Windows can boot successfully or not.

>>If your Windows can boot successfully, you can click the Search box, input CMD, and right-click the given Command Prompt icon and select Run as administrator to open the CMD window.
>> If your Windows cannot boot successfully, you need the help of  Windows installation disc to open CMD window as the following instruction.

1. Insert Windows installation disc into your computer, boot from it.

2. Select language, time and keyboard input, and click Next.

3. For a Windows 11, 10, or Windows 8.1/ 8 installation media, go for Troubleshoot>Command Prompt. For a Windows 7 installation media, in System Recovery Options, select the first item and Windows 7 as the operating system, click "Next">"Command Prompt".

After opening the CMD window, you can check bad sectors and fix damaged MBR now.

Part 1. Check bad sectors on the internal hard disk

You just need type "chkdsk c: /f" and press Enter in the window. (where C is the drive letter of one partition on the internal hard disk). In most cases, you will receive a message saying “Chkdsk cannot run because the volume is in use by another process. Would you like to schedule this volume to be checked the next time the system restarts? (Y/N)”


In this situation, you can answer the question with a “Y” for yes, and press Enter. ThenChkdsk will run automatically the next time you reboot Windows.

Part 2. Fix MBR of the internal hard disk

A damaged MBR is one of the most reasons for a corrupted internal hard disk, so fixing or rebuilding MBR is an important part of how to repair corrupted internal hard disk. To fix MBR in Command Prompt window, type the following commands in sequence and hit Enter after each one.

•bootrec /fixmbr

•bootrec /fixboot

•bootrec /scanos

•bootrec /rebuildbcd

Then restart your computer when it completes.

2. Fix internal hard disk with free partition software (Not require Windows Disc)

The instruction about how to repair corrupted internal hard disk via CMD tool is complicated? The internal hard drive becomes RAW in Windows, and the error message-CHKDSK is not available for RAW drives appears when running CHKDSK? Or you don’t have a Windows installation disc to open CMD window to fix MBR?

To get around all the awkward situations, here we recommend you a reliable GUI free partition manager-AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard (supporting Windows 11/10/8/7/XP/Vista). This freeware allows you to create a bootable media, then check (RAW) partition and rebuild MBR in Windows PE mode. In the whole process, the Windows installation disc is not required.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

To create a bootable USB: Connect an empty USB to a working computer, download the free software, install and run it on the working computer. Click “Tools” in the top toolbar, and choose “Make Bootable Media” to create a bootable USB. (PS: it will contain installed AOMEI Partition Assistant.)

Make Bootable Media

Then plug the bootable USB in the computer with a corrupted internal hard disk. Enter BIOS and change the boot order to make your computer boot from the bootable USB just created. Once login, you will be in the main interface of AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard. The follow the steps below to rebuild MBR and check RAW partition.

Part 1. Rebuild MBR

1. Right click the internal disk and select "Rebuild MBR".

Rebuild MBR

2. Choose a proper MBR type for the current OS you are using and click OK.

Choose MBR Type

3. In the main interface, click "Apply">"Proceed" to start rebuilding the MBR.


Part 2. Check RAW partition

1. Right click the RAW partition in AOMEI Partition Assistant and go for "Advanced">"Check Partition".

Check Partition

2. Tick the last method to check whether there are some bad sectors on the partition and click "OK".

Fix Error

3. Click “Start” to begin the checking process.

What’s more, you can check an entire disk under the help of “Surface Test” feature. If those methods does not work, you can use AOMEI Partition Assistant to wipe the internal hard drive completely and reinstall OS.

Sum up

If you are curious about how to repair corrupted internal hard disk without formatting, this article offers you effective solutions. It is worth mentioning that AOMEI Partition Assistant is versatile software, making it possible to repair damaged hard disk without Windows disc, and you can also use it to format system partition, migrate OS to SSD, extend system partition without reboot. If you are mainly using Windows Server, you can try AOMEI Partition Assistant Server.

Emily · Staff Editor
Emily is an English editor of AOMEI Technology; she has a great passion for providing easy solutions for people to tackle with all disk or partition management problems. In addition to writing articles about disk/partition management, she also edits great tutorials on how to back up and restore disk for data security. In her spare time, she loves to learn computer skill to improve herself or stay with her family to enjoy a good day.