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External Hard Disk Corrupted – Know What to Do Now?

Anuraag Singh | Published: 28-Apr-2020 | Data Recovery | 6 Minutes Reading

“Hello. We have a laptop at home that I and my mother both use. We also use external hard drives to store movies and games. I have noticed some unusual things about the external HDD for the last few days. Whenever I connect the hard drive, it takes a lot of time for my system to detect it. Moreover, I see some random files are also missing from that HDD too. I think that the external hard drive has been corrupt. Now tell me how do I recover the external hard disk when it is corrupt. There are more than 300 GB of data and I do not want to lose my collection. Please tell me any easy method to at least retrieve the files.”

Are you also facing the hard drive corruption problem? Would you like to recover data from corrupted external hard drive? Read on to know how you can retrieve files from corrupt hard disks. Know what to do when hard disk corrupted.

External hard drives are usually used for storing various files. Often, they are used for data backup and saving large-sized files. Now, many issues can make an external hard drive corrupt and damaged. This is equally disheartening for the users as an internal hard drive corruption. During this situation, it is often asked, how do you recover the external hard drive when it is corrupt?
This blog will focus on this topic and tell readers how they can get back their data from the corrupted hard drive.

#1: – Scan With Anti-Virus to Fix Hard Disk Corruption Issue

There are many anti-virus applications available in the market. You can choose any good software and scan your hard drive with it to resolve the corruption. Before running the tool, make sure it does not delete any files in order to fix the HDD corruption. Some of the anti-viruses are:

  • Norton Anti-Virus
  • Avast Anti-Virus
  • AVG Anti-Virus
  • Avira Anti-Virus
  • Kaspersky Anti-Virus etc.

Note: – While scanning corrupted files or hard disk. Some of the anti-viruses delete infected files. Make sure to check before using anti-virus.

#2: – Format your Corrupted Hard Drive

If anti-virus didn’t for you, then you have only one option left i.e., format the Disk. But formatting an HDD will erase complete data. If saved files are not important then Format the disk immediately.

Steps to Format Corrupted Hard Disk

  1. Open Disk Management, press Windows + R key to open Run box.
  2. Type diskmgmt.msc and click on the Ok button. After that, the Disk Management window will appear. Select the external hard drive.
  3. After that right-click on it and click on Format. After that follow the instruction.

Steps to Format Hard Disk Corrupt Partition

  1. Open File Explorer and select the corrupted partition.
  2. Right-click on it and after that click on Format option
  3. Now it will ask you to select the file system (exFAT, NTFS, etc.)

Note: Formatting a disk will erase complete data. If it happened to you, and you want erased files back. Follow the below solution.

Recovery Solution for Corrupted Hard Disk

There are different ways to fix this corruption and you can try any one of them. But the solution is not trusted and safe. Due to this, you may lose your important files. But this most trusted Hard Drive Data Recovery Software will empower you to save files. Here is how you can run this software:

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Step 1: – Connect the external hard drive to your system.

external hard disk corrupted
Step 2: – Launch the software on your system. Click on the Scan button underneath the corrupted external drive letter.

files corrupted on external hdd

Step 3: – The software will scan it and show all the items for preview. It will also recover permanently deleted word documents from Hard Drive and highlighted it from red color.

file recovered from corrupted hard drive

Step 4: – Now, users can choose the files they wish to retrieve and select those before clicking on the Save button. Choose the location where you want to save these  recovered shift deleted PST files from HDD. The application will retrieve all the chosen files.

all external drive

In case you want to try some manual methods beforehand, here are two common manual tricks to remove external hard drive corruption. These methods do not assure data recovery from the corrupt HDD.

#3: – Run CHKDSK Command to Resolve Hard Drive Corruption Issue

You can also take the help of command to prompt to fix the external hard drive not formatted corruptions error. Most searched solutions, but in actual this method will not solve the corruption issue.

a. Open Command Prompt by typing CMD in the search box.
b. Type chkdsk Z: /f /r /x in the command window. Here, replace Z with the drive letter of your external hard disk.

Note: – Here, ‘f’ command is used for fixing corruption, ‘r’ is used for recovering data after detecting the bad sectors, and ‘x’ dismounts the drive (if necessary) before the process begins.

Extra Info:

Symptoms of Hard Drive Corruption

Here are some of the common symptoms of corrupt or damaged external HDD. Before knowing how to recover files from corrupted hard disk.

  1. PC fails to recognize the hard disk
  2. Files are disappearing from the drive
  3. Getting error message that ‘you have to format the drive before opening’
  4. Error message ‘the drive is corrupt and inaccessible’
  5. The size of the external hard disk becomes 0
  6. The HDD size is shown correctly but files are not found
  7. The file system of the external HDD became RAW
  8. The disk makes ticking noise after connecting, but the sound was not there earlier

If one or more of these symptoms are occurring, then there is a possibility that the drive is corrupt and damaged. What you have to do then is to stop using the hard drive immediately. You should also try to recover permanently deleted emails from hard drive.


Various reasons can lead to external hard drive corruption. In the above discussion, we have answered, retrieve lost files from failed hard disk when it is corrupt? If you suspect that your external HDD is corrupted or damaged, you can use Computer Data Recovery Tool to restore important files and save them in a different location. You can also try some manual methods given here if you want.