How to Get Rid of Bad Sectors On External Hard Drive?

Bad sectors on disk surface

A bad sector on a storage disk means that a sector of the disk has turned defective. With bad sectors, it won’t be possible to perform any read-write operations on such sectors. In other words, you just cannot store or access any data on the sectors that have turned defective. All external hard drives and other USB media device encounter problems with bad sectors because of many reasons.

Generally speaking, bad sectors are of two different types. One is caused due to physical damages to the hard disk. This, in fact, is very difficult to be fixed or cannot be fixed at all. The other type of bad sectors is formed due to some logical or software errors. Some major causes for soft bad sectors include-

  • Virus and malware invasions
  • Sudden system shut down
  • Abrupt removal of external HD while it is in use

With these kinds of bad sectors formed on your removable HD, you might observe some error messages on your computer. You can also see that files/data in your external hard disk to have turned corrupted with damaged disk sectors. At worst cases, with extensive bad sectors, you can experience hard drive failure. Fortunately, this kind of bad sector can be fixed with some techniques.

Dealing with bad sectors on your external hard disk

It is quite distressing when bad sectors are found on the disk space containing any vital files or data. Henceforth, bad sectors should be carefully repaired in order to protect data stored on the disk. Here is what you can do to repair bad disk sectors on a Windows system-

The check disk utility: Running the inbuilt check disk utility can scan your external drive and attempt to fix bad sectors on it. A key thing to remember here is, to take a backup your drive contents prior running the check disk command. This is because at times check disk may fail to repair the disk and data on the external media may appear in an unreadable format.

  • Connect your external hard drive to a Windows PC
  • Open the File Explorer and right-click on that particular drive (containing bad sectors)
  • Choose properties option
  • Click on Tools tab, press over Check button (Check Now on Windows 7)

Then there appears a dialog box, which if you want, can mark both the options: Automatically fix the system errors and Scan for and attempt for the recovery of bad sectors. After marking relevant options, press on the Start button to begin the repair process.

Alternately, you can perform disk check in a manual way in the Windows command prompt. Open the Command window (run as administrator) then type the command as- chkdsk /f drive_ letter: (Replace drive_letter with your respective e external hard drive letter) and press on Enter key.

Likewise, check disk in Windows, there are similar inbuilt disk repair utilities are available on Macintosh and Linux operating system environments.

Recovery from bad sectors

If it is not at all possible to access data from drives with bad sectors you can simply seek the help of a data recovery program. Drive data restoration tools as Remo Recover can strongly handle bad sectors formed on your external HD and retrieve all the drive contents. Along with external hard drives, the program can also recover bad sector USB drive, memory cards, and other external devices. Moreover, the process of recovering drive files takes merely a little time that too with easy steps. You can get back your data affected with bad sectors in their original format. To this, the tool is compatible to run on all latest OS versions.