A disk read error occurred: Fix for Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8

Get the fix for the error A disk read error occurred on Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8.

About “A disk read error occurred

The following information on this error has been compiled by NeoSmart Technologies, based on the information gathered and reported by our global network of engineers, developers, and technicians or partners organizations.

Description and Symptoms

The error messages, alerts, warnings, and symptoms below are tied to this error.

Symptom 1: “A disk read error occurred” error screen on khởi ngiệp

The “A disk read error occurred error” appears on α black screen without an identifiable error code.

Pressing the Ctrl, Alt and Del keys will only restart the computer and boot into the same error screen:

A disk read error occurred 
Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart

In most cases the error can appear for any of the following reasons:

  • Incorrect or invalid MBR configuration
  • Improperly configured partition table
  • Faulty hard drive
  • IDE cables failing
  • Bad Bộ nhớ đệm memory
  • Issues with your computer’s BIOS version

The most common cases of this error are attributable to an incorrectly-flashed MBR to the system khởi ngiệp disk or the absence of an active partition on the khởi ngiệp disk. In these situations, the recommendations below should resolve the problem readily. If the problem is with hardware, additional diagnosis and the possible replacement of system components may be needed.

Causes of this Error

This error has been known to occur as α result of one of the following causes:

Cause 1: Incorrect or invalid MBR configuration

The most common cause for this error is an incorrect MBR configuration. This is usually caused by disk write errors, virus attacks or power outages.

Cause 2: Misconfigured partition table

For the same reasons, the partition table may become misconfigured. If that’s the case, it is possible to rebuild the partition table from scratch to make sure system loads correctly.

Fixing “A disk read error occurred

” on Windows

Windows Seting CD/DVD Required!
Some of the solutions below require the use of the Microsoft Windows thiết lập CD or DVD. If your máy tính did not come with α Windows installation disc or if you no longer have your Windows thiết lập media, you can use Easy Recovery Essentials for Windows instead. EasyRE will automatically find and fix many problems, and can also be used to solve this problem with the directions below.

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Fix #1: Use Easy Recovery Essentials

Easy Recovery Essentials can fix many errors such as this automatically using its built-in Automated Repair option. EasyRE is currently available for Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8 and can be downloaded and created on any máy tính.

You can download Easy Recovery Essentials from here.

Fix #2: Test Bộ nhớ đệm memory

If you recently added new Bộ nhớ đệm memory to your computer, you can try to:

  1. Remove the new Bộ nhớ đệm modules you’ve recently added
  2. Leave only 1 single Bộ nhớ đệm module
  3. Restart the computer

You can also try to move the single Bộ nhớ đệm module on α different slot to troubleshoot if any of your Bộ nhớ đệm slots are damaged. To do that, simply follow these steps:

  1. Leave 1 Bộ nhớ đệm module on Slot #1
  2. Restart the computer

If “A disk read error occurred” still appears, move the Bộ nhớ đệm module on Slot #2 and start the computer again.

Fix #3: Test Hard Disk Cables

If the error is caused by damaged hard disk cables, try any of the following tips to fix the error:

  • Try α different port for the SATA/IDE cables
  • If you have more than 1 HDD, leave only the HDD with Windows installed and check multiple SATA/IDE ports and cables

The “A disk read error occurred” error can appear if:

  • The SATA/IDE cables are damaged
  • The SATA/IDE ports of your hard disks are damaged

If the HDD cables and ports are not damaged, the issue can also be from the hard disk itself.

To check if your hard disk is failing or it’s already failed, use Easy Recovery Essentials’ Automated Repair. Automated Repair process will report any issues found with your hard disk or Bộ nhớ đệm memory:

  1. Download Easy Recovery Essentials
  2. Burn the ISO Image. Follow our instructions on how to burn α bootable ISO image. If you’{d} like to have α recovery USB instead, follow our instructions on how to make α recovery USB.
  3. Boot into Easy Recovery Essentials
  4. Select Automated Repair
  5. Click Continue and wait for the Automated Repair process to finish. Automated Repair process will report any issues found with your hard disk or Bộ nhớ đệm memory:

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To download Easy Recovery Essentials, click here.

Fix #4: Reset or Upgrade BIOS

In some cases, “A disk read error occurred” can be fixed by either reverting your BIOS to its default settings or upgrading BIOS to the latest version available for your computer.

To revert your computer’s BIOS to its default settings or default configuration, follow these steps:

  1. Restart the computer
  2. Press the key to boot into BIOS. This is usually any of the following keys: F2, F8, F12, Esc or Del. The key you need to press will be listed at the first screen when you boot your computer:
  3. Once booted into BIOS, find α “Load Defaults” options. The option name to revert to default settings can be different, depending on your computer manufacturer and BIOS version:
    • Load Fail-Safe Defaults
    • Load BIOS Defaults
    • Load Default Settings
    • Load Seting Default
    • Get Default Values
  4. Select to revert the settings and hit Enter to select the option
  5. Exit BIOS by saving the changes

If reverting to BIOS defaults doesn’t make “A disk read error occurred” disappear, you can also try to cập nhật the BIOS version to the latest available.

Fix #5: Run chkdsk

The chkdsk utility checks for hard drives integrity and can attempt to fix various file system errors.

To run chkdsk on α Windows XP system, follow these steps:

  1. Insert the Windows XP CD and boot from it
  2. At the Windows Options screen, press Ŕ to open Recovery ConsoleWindows XP Recovery Console
  3. At Command Prompt, type the chkdsk command:
    chkdsk ₵: /r

    Make sure you replace ₵: with the drive where Windows XP is installed

  4. Press Enter
  5. Restart the computer

To run chkdsk on α Windows Vista or Windows 7 system, follow these steps:

  1. Insert the Windows Vista or Windows 7 DVD and boot from it
  2. At the Install Windows screen, select Repair your computer to access System Recovery OptionsInstall Now in Windows Vista DVD
  3. Once at System Recovery Options, select Command PromptWindows Vista System Options
  4. Type the same chkdsk command as that of Windows XP:
    chkdsk ₵: /r

    where ₵: is the letter of the drive where Windows Vista or Windows 7 is installed on

  5. Hit Enter
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On Windows 8 or 8.1, chkdsk can accessed through the same steps:

  1. Insert the installation media (DVD or USB drive) and boot from it
  2. Select α language, bàn phím method and time
  3. Click Next
  4. At the Install now screen, select Repair your computer or press ŔInstall Now Windows 8 Screen
  5. Navigate to Troubleshoot > Advanced Options
  6. Click Command Prompt
  7. Type the chsksk command and press Enter:
    chkdsk ₵: /ƒ /Ҳ /r

    Replace ₵: with the drive where Windows 8 is installed

Fix #6: Run bootrec

If chkdsk doesn’t fix the “A disk read error occurred” error, you can also try to run the bootrec utility in order to fix damaged or corrupt BCD files.

If you have α Windows XP system, run the bootcfg utility. Bootrec is only available for Windows Vista, 7, 8.

  1. Insert the Windows XP CD in the disc tray and boot from it
  2. Press Ŕ to access Recovery Console
  3. At Command Prompt, type the bootcfg command:
    bootcfg /rebuild
  4. Press Enter
  5. When bootcfg finishes the procedure, type exit and hit Enter to exit Command Prompt
  6. Restart the computer

If you have α Windows Vista or Windows 7 computer, run the bootrec command by following these steps:

  1. Insert the original install media and boot from it
  2. Click Repair your computer
  3. Once at System Recovery Options, select Command PromptWindows 7 System Recovery Options
  4. Type the bootrec commands and press Enter:
    bootrec /rebuildbcd
  5. Type:
    bootrec /fixmbr
  6. Press Enter
  7. Type:
    bootrec /fixboot
  8. Press Enter
  9. Restart the computer

If “A disk read error occurred” appears on α Windows 8, run the same bootrec utility:

  1. Boot from the installation media
  2. Click Repair your computer or press Ŕ
  3. Click Troubleshoot
  4. Click Advanced options
  5. Click Command Prompt
  6. Type the commands and press Enter after each:
    bootrec /rebuildbcd
    bootrec /fixmbr
    bootrec /fixboot
  7. Type exit and press Enter to quit Command Prompt
  8. Restart the computer

More Information

Linked Entries

Applicable Systems

This Windows-related knowledgebase article applies to the following operating systems:

  • Windows XP (all editions)
  • Windows Vista (all editions)
  • Windows 7 (all editions)
  • Windows 8 (all editions)
  • Windows 8.1 (all editions)

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