CHKDSK Is Not Available for RAW Drives? Fix RAW Drive Instantly

Wondershare Recoverit Authors

May 20, 2024 • Filed to: Answer Hard Drive Problems • Proven solutions

How do I fix a raw hard drive? I tried the CHKDSK command on Windows, but got an error stating – CHKDSK is not available for RAW drives. What are the other options to repair a RAW drive that I can try?

If you are a regular Windows user, then you might be familiar with the CHKDSK command. It is an inbuilt command that can get rid of various logical errors on a hard drive and fix its file system. Though, if you own a RAW drive, then you might find it hard to use the CHKDSK command with it. Don't worry – you can easily overcome this issue and do RAW disk repair like a pro. Read on and the guide has provided tons of solutions for how to fix a RAW drive on Windows.

Part 1: Why CHKDSK Is Not Available for RAW Drives?

CHKDSK is an inbuilt utility command in Windows that is used to fix a hard drive (or a partition). It can get rid of various kinds of logical errors and can even fix a corrupt file system. Though, the command will only work with file systems that are recognized by the computer like FAT32 or NTFS. If the external drive is in a format that Windows can't recognize, then it would be categorized as RAW and the command won't be able to process.


In this case, an error message like this stating "CHKDSK is not available for RAW drives" is displayed. The following are some of its common reasons.

Part 2: How to Fix RAW Drive Using CHKDSK Properly?

As you know, sometimes users get the "CHKDSK is not available for raw drives" error due to a faulty format or process. Therefore, before you take any drastic measure or follow an alternative method to fix a RAW drive, make sure that you follow a proper technique. Here's how to fix the RAW external hard drive without formatting using the CHKDSK command the right way.

1. To start with, connect your hard drive to the system and let it detect it automatically.

2. Now, go to the Start menu and look for Command Prompt. Make sure that you run it as an administrator for hassle-free control.


3. Once the Command Prompt window will open, enter the "chkdsk" command followed by the drive letter that you wish to format. Also, type the "/f" and "/r" parameters after it. The "/f" feature will fix and repair errors on the drive while "/r" will identify the bad sectors and repair the available data from it.

4. For instance, if you wish to check the "H:" drive, then you would enter "chkdsk h: /f /r".


That's it! Now you can just wait for a few seconds as Windows would check the disk and tries to fix all kinds of issues with it.

Part 3: CHKDSK Is Not Available for RAW Drives? Try these Ways Instead

If the disk that you have connected is of the RAW (or unsupported) format, then the CHKDSK command won't work. Don't worry – you can still fix the RAW drive through either of the following alternative solutions.

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Solution 1: Use Properties to Check and Repair RAW Drive

This is the easiest solution to repair a RAW drive that the CHKDSK command can't fix. Since Windows has offered tons of solutions to repair a drive, we can take the assistance of its native methods. One of them is the Error-checking feature that can perform RAW disk repair and yield positive results in less time. Here's how to fix a RAW hard drive without format via its Properties.

1. Connect your external source to your Windows computer and once it is detected, go to My Computer.


2. Now, select and right-click the drive you wish to check and enter its Properties.

3. This will open a dedicated Properties window on the screen. From here, go to the "Tools" tab and click on the "Check" button under the Error Checking section.

4. Confirm your choice by entering the administrator credentials and wait as Windows would repair the RAW drive subsequently.


Solution 2: Reformat the RAW Drive to NTFS

As you know, most of these issues occur when a hard drive with an unsupported file system is connected to Windows. To fix this, you need to reformat the source to a compatible file system like NTFS. Though, you should know that this will get rid of all the stored content from the hard drive. The good thing is that it will make the drive compatible with Windows in the end. Here's how to fix the RAW hard drive to NTFS on Windows.

1. Connect your external hard disk to your computer and wait for it to be detected. Afterward, launch My Computer and select the drive of your choice.

2. Right-click its icon and select the "Format" option from the list.


3. A pop-up window will open for formatting the drive. Click on the dropdown option under the File System. From here, select a compatible format like NTFS and click on the "Start" button to confirm your choice.


In this end, this will format the drive to NTFS format. Now, you can use it without any trouble with a Windows system.

Solution 3: Use CMD to Repair the RAW Drive

CMD (or Command Prompt) is the native command user interface in Windows that helps us perform numerous tasks. In case if you are not able to repair the RAW drive using the CHKDSK command, then don't worry – there is another option. The DISKPART (Disk Partition) utility command will let you clean the drive and format it to the file system of your choice. You can follow these steps to fix the RAW drive on Windows using the DISKPART command.

1. Connect the hard drive to your computer and from its Start menu, launch the Command Prompt window.

2. Now, just type and enter the "DISKPART" command to load the utility tool. Firstly, enter the "list disk" command to start with.

3. This will list the details of all the connected disks with their identifier. From here, simply note the name (like disk 1 or disk 2) of the RAW drive.

4. Now, you need to select the disk. To do this, just enter the "select" command followed by its identifier. For instance, to pick disk 2, enter "select disk 2".

5. Furthermore, enter the command "attributes disk clear readonly" to make sure that the disk won't stay write-protected.

6. Once it is processed, enter the "clean" command to wipe all the data stored in the disk. This would be followed by the "create partition primary" command to make a primary partition on the disk.

7. That's it! In the end, you simply need to format the disk to a particular file system. To do this, type the "format" command, followed by "fs" and the name of the file system. If you wish to format it to an NTFS system, then enter "format fs=ntfs".


Just sit back and wait for a few minutes as the drive would be formatted to a compatible file system. Afterward, you can use the CHKDSK command again to repair the disk.

Part 4: How to Recover Data from a RAW Drive

While fixing the RAW drive, chances are that you might have formatted it. Therefore, if your data has been lost after fixing or formatting a RAW disk, then consider using Recoverit Data Recovery. Developed by Wondershare, it provides a user-friendly and highly efficient solution to recover our data under different scenarios. The tool has an impressive recovery rate of 96% and can get back more than 1000 different types of content.

The best thing about Recoverit is that it supports all kinds of external sources too. This includes external hard disks, USB drives, SD cards, and so on in every popular file format like NTFS, FAT32, exFAT, and more. Therefore, you won't face any kind of compatibility issue using Recoverit Data Recovery. All you got to do is follow these steps to recover your lost data.

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Step 1: Pick a location to scan

Connect your external hard drive to your computer (if you haven't already) and launch Recoverit on it. On its welcome screen, you can see the available partitions, popular folders, and the connected external sources. Simply select a location and click on the "Start" button to commence the recovery process.


Step 2: Wait for the scan to be over

As the application would scan the source, you can simply wait for it to be over. There is an on-screen indicator to show its progress, which you can halt anytime you want.


Step 3: Recover your data

That's it! Once the process is over, all the retrieved content will be displayed on its interface. You can go to its sidebar to browse between different categories and preview your photos, videos, documents, etc. Now, just select the files you wish to save and click on the "Recover" button. This will let you save the selected files to any location.


When you recover your data, make sure that you restore it to any other location than your hard drive. In this way, you can easily maintain a copy of your important files at a trusted place. While the basic version of Recoverit is for free, it has a data limit of 100 MB. Therefore, if you have a lot of files to restore, then you can directly get its premium subscription.

That's a wrap, everyone! After following this guide, you would be able to fix a RAW drive and issues like CHKDSK is not available for RAW drives. To make it easier for you, we have listed three different options to repair RAW drive apart from the CHKDSK command. You can choose either of them and even take the assistance of Recoverit if your data has been lost during the process. It is a remarkable data recovery tool that would certainly help you get back all kinds of content under different data loss scenarios.

Recoverit author

Theo Lucia

chief Editor

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