How to Fix “Windows Detect Hard Disk Problem”

If Windows detect hard disk problem, how to repair the hard drive to save your data? You can learn why Windows prompt this error on your PC and how to fix it in this practical guide.


By Lucas / Updated on May 12, 2023

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Why does Windows detect hard disk problem on your PC?

The hard drive problem is an old question for PC users. If your computer is running Windows after Windows XP, you may get an error notice "Windows detect hard disk problem" advising you to backup files quickly to avoid data loss and then contact the computer maker to decide whether you need to repair or replace the disk.

When a hard disk fails or encounters other serious issues, Windows may become damaged, sluggish, or even crash and freeze. Furthermore, getting this error is aggravating because it reports every 5 or 10 minutes. This error message is frequently an omen of a hard disk failure, system crash, file loss, and so on. It is vital to prioritize the problem and investigate possible causes and fixes.

Windows detect hard disk problem

Possible reasons for the “Windows detect hard disk problem” prompt:

• Mechanically or logical damage on a hard disk
It's extremely possible that your hard drive may have issues such as file system corruption, faulty sectors, mechanical issues, and more. The hard drive is the computer's brain, responsible for data storage, and hard disk problems endanger data security. The system displays this warning to notify users of potential information issues and to assist them in preventing file loss.

• Corrupted system files
There are several causes of system file errors, including incomplete software uninstallation, accidental loss of vital system files, erroneous computer shutdown, and so on. All of these acts have the potential to corrupt entries in critical system files. The damaged system file will also result in erroneous or missing link data and information necessary for the system to function properly.

• Virus attacks
When a computer is infected with a virus, it changes even after anti-virus software has eliminated the infection. In theory, your computer will not be infected with viruses as long as your anti-virus software is powerful enough, but this does not guarantee your machine is error-free. Furthermore, in most cases, anti-virus software cannot fix virus-caused damage, which might impair the system. The system may then report the message incorrectly.

• Mistakenly change on PC
Numerous inappropriate activities are performed accidentally by users, which can cause major problems with the system even when users are attempting to improve computational efficiency. Some users, for example, change system registry settings, change system file attributes or location, install incompatible plugins, and so on.
However, many users are inept at maintaining systems or computer components, they are more prone to follow faulty instructions and carry out inappropriate activities. Certain incorrect acts may cause system or hardware harm.

Of course, there are many other suspicious reasons such as registry error, RAM decline, fragmented files, excessive startup entries, redundant program installations, etc.

3 ways for “Windows detect hard disk problem” error

The error message makes it difficult to determine the cause. The essential question is how to resolve the "Windows detect hard disk problem" error.

Before we start, please reconnect the power cable and SATA cable to get rid of any connection problems. Sometimes the disk error may be triggered by an unstable connection. If all components are connected well, then we can try other solutions.

Way 1. Repair hard disk error with SFC

Step 1. Input cmd in the Windows search box, right-click the Command Prompt and choose Run as administrator.

Step 2. Input the sfc /scannow command, and press Enter.


Step 3. It will begin to scan the system and repair the corrupted files automatically. And you may receive different messages in the following:

The procedure is quick, and the outcome will reveal whether or not there is an interiority breach. This command examines all protected system files for corruption and replaces them with a backup copy. Do not shut the window until the verification is completely finished. If there is no problem, reboot your computer and see if this problem still exists.

Way 2. Perform CHKDSK for hard disk

Step 1. Press Windows + R key combination to open the Run window.

Step 2. Type the chkdsk C: /f /r /x and press Enter.

C: : Target drive
/f: fix any errors it finds.
/r: locate the bad sectors on the drive and recover readable information.
/x: force the drive to dismount before the operation.

Check error

Step 3. Reboot your computer and see if this problem still exists.

Way 3. Check bad sector and run a surface test for the hard disk

The 2 methods above are testing and resolving system errors and checking file system problems. If there is no problem with the system or the partition file system, you must check the hard drive's health. Bad sectors can occur on any hard disk and suspicious data security. Furthermore, several users reported that CHKDSK was stuck when scanning and repairing a disk on Windows.

Therefore, a reliable disk checking tool can meet your needs. AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard is a free disk and partition checking tool for Windows 11/10/8/8.1/7/XP/Vista users to check hard disk errors, monitor disk health, and test disk speed. What’s more, you can use the defragment feature to improve your HDD performance regularly.

Download FreewareWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

▶ Check partitions

Step 1. Free download the software, install and launch it. It will display to you the basic situation of your hard drives. Select the partition that you want to check for, right-click it, and select Advanced -> Check Partition.

Advanced check

Step 2. It will pop up a small window where you can select the way of checking errors to perform. Choose one according to your needs and click OK. It will proceed immediately.

Check and repair

▶ Surface test

Step 1. Open AOMEI Partition Assistant. Click the disk you want to scan and select "Disk Surface Test" under "Test". It will mostly check the bad sectors of the selected disk.

System disk surface test

Step 2. Click Start to do the surface test. You may want to tick Quick Check to perform a fast test.

Start test

▶ Test disk health

To check disk health, AOMEI Partition Assistant can smartly monitor your disk. Once it detects that the disk health status of one hard drive is poor, a red exclamation mark will be displayed on the disk icon. You can also right-click on one hard drive and choose Properties-->Health(SMART) to see detailed S.M.A.R.T. information on this disk.

Disk health

Step 2: There are 3 states of hard disk health:

State one: Good
The disk is in good condition and can be used with confidence.

State two: Caution
Except for the temperature, one or more attributes are close to the threshold. The disk still can be used normally, but it is recommended to back up the disk regularly.

State three: Bad
One or more attributes are equal to or less than the threshold. The disk may be damaged soon and cause data loss. It is recommended to clone this disk and replace it with a new one.


You can click "View details" to see specific S.M.A.R.T. values, red text indicates that the value of the item is equal to or exceeds the threshold.

Health status

Bonus tips: Safely replace failing disk on Windows PC

A hard disk or system failure might result in significant file loss. If you discover that any folders or files have vanished for no apparent reason after seeing the "Windows detect hard disk problem" notice, you can try to recover those lost files which might not be deleted thoroughly.

But, you also have to know that these kinds of symptoms mean that it's time to replace old disk as soon as possible.

To replace or back up the failing disk on your PC, you can upgrade to the Professional Edition. There are two functions, Disk Clone Wizard and Migrate OS to SSD, to help you safely and conveniently upgrade your disk without reinstalling OS.

Disk clone wizard” can avoid reinstalling OS and all your installed apps. All your data will be duplicated on the target disk.

Disk Clone Wizard

While “Migrate OS to SSD” is a system cloning, it only clones system-relevant files and partitions, so users can enjoy a familiar OS environment to start new Windows usage.

Migrate OS to SSD

To sum up

When Windows detect hard disk problem, don’t panic, check your disk and prepare to change to a new one. AOMEI Partition Assistant will always be a reliable tool to protect your disk and PC. If you’re using Windows Server, you can choose our Server Edition which supports Windows Server 2022/2019/2016/2012(R2)/2008(R2)/2003.

Lucas · Staff Editor
I prefer peaceful and quiet life during vacation,but sometimes I watch football match if my favorite club performs brilliantly in that season. And I love reading, painting and calligraphy, thus I send my friends festival handwriting cards every year.