How to Recover a Missing Sector on a Hard Drive 1
/ By Vlad Tabaranu / Data Recovery / 0 Comments

How to Recover a Missing Sector on a Hard Drive

If your hard drive has missing sectors, you may be puzzled as to how to rectify this. Various methods, including the use of tools and data recovery software, can be employed to address this issue. Here are some of the most commonly used ways. Initially, you can try to rectify the soft bad sectors. Fixing these sectors is typically easier than hard ones, and the majority of operating systems come with built-in utilities to handle them. If you are a Microsoft Windows user, chkdsk can be used to detect such problems, while Linux users can opt for badblocks for the same purpose. If the affected sector can’t be repaired, it’ll be designated as unfit for use, requiring you to utilize a data recovery instrument to salvage the erased files.


Bad sectors on a hard drive can leave your files inaccessible and cause your computer to freeze or turn off without warning. These sectors are caused by physical damage or software errors. It is important to keep your hard drive in tip-top shape and avoid touching it while it is running.

Bad sectors can also lead to an unusual friction sound while booting up your computer, system error messages, and a disk that won’t format. A scan tool called Scandisk runs when the system boots up and can detect bad sectors. In some cases, the problem can be caused by viruses or malware. In these cases, you can use Disk Check or virus cleaner software to remove the affected sectors.

Hard drives are comprised of many parts, including a PCB. The PCBs control the operation of the read/write heads and a tiny arm that changes the orientation of disk plates. When the PCB fails, the hard drive will no longer work properly and will eventually fail. When this happens, you may notice a burning smell or an unresponsive drive. In addition, you might also notice strange file errors.

Bad sectors can occur on mechanical hard drives, modern solid-state drives, and many forms of digital media. A hard drive with bad sectors generally means that the disk can’t read any files. However, despite its failure, hard drive file recovery is still possible.

The most simple and easiest way to fix the problem is to remove all of the unwanted contents on the disk. Go to the partition where the disk is and delete any content that you don’t need. Take care not to delete any important system files. You should also empty the Recycle Bin so that there is more disk space available.

The problem can also be caused by physical damage to the hard drive. For instance, bumping or dropping the hard drive can cause a bad sector. Another cause is a manufacturing defect. This occurs when the manufacturing process is improper or there is a design flaw. Even new hard disk drives can develop bad sectors. If you don’t fix a bad sector in time, you will lose all your data forever.

Repair options

If your hard drive has a bad sector, you have several options for recovering the data. You can first use disk drive scanning to locate the bad sector. Secondly, you can use professional data recovery software. Some of these tools can even detect and repair file system errors. One of these options is to use Windows 10’s built-in disk repair feature. When you connect the disk to your computer, make sure to be gentle when you move it. It’s also a good idea to place it in a safe environment. Lastly, make sure to protect your computer from sudden power failures.

Another option is to use Windows’ built-in hard disk check tool, known as ScanDisk. This method can be helpful if your hard drive contains a soft bad sector. Windows File Explorer can also be used to locate your hard drive. In the “Format” tab, right-click the hard drive and choose “Quick Format.” Once the formatting process is complete, you can save your data to the hard drive.

If you are trying to recover the data from a hard drive that has a missing sector, it’s important to perform an analysis before starting any recovery process. This step will help determine how much data you need to recover. The size of your hard disk and the extent of the damage to your files will determine how long it will take to recover the data. You’ll need to be patient, as the analysis process can take hours to complete.

Bad sectors are a common problem for data storage devices. While bad sectors are unavoidable, there are ways to recover data from them. This guide will provide you with tips on how to perform this repair. Once you’ve done this, you’ll be on your way to restoring the data you need.

There are two types of bad sectors on a hard drive: physically damaged and logically damaged sectors. A physically damaged sector occurs when a cluster of hard disk cells is damaged. The hard drive’s operating system will not be able to read data stored in that sector. If you have a logically damaged sector, you can try to fix it with software.

If you are unable to read the data on your hard drive, the easiest way to recover it is by using a Windows data recovery tool. These tools can locate and save the lost data to a new hard drive. This method is not suitable for physical hard disks that have bad sectors, but it can help you reinstall your operating system. It’s important to back up your data frequently to protect it from losing valuable files.

Although it is possible to repair a hard drive, it is not an easy process. Unlike software, the process of fixing a hard drive requires several steps and is not free. Hard drives that have bad sectors will be slow to read and write data.

Time frame

When it comes to recovering deleted files from a hard drive, you’re going to need data recovery software. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to improve your chances of success. One option is to clone the hard drive. This can fix the problem of bad sectors and restore lost data. Another option is to run a data recovery scan with a data recovery tool. These tools will scan your hard drive for missing or corrupted sectors, and can even recover deleted files.

Bad sectors can be caused by various things, including power outages and physical damage. Bad sectors cause your hard drive to run slower and give you less storage space. In addition, they can damage your file system and boot sector, so you may need to reinstall your operating system. However, most bad sectors don’t pose a significant problem.

Another common cause of missing sectors is mechanical damage. Dropping or bumping your hard drive can cause physical damage, which will lead to bad sectors. Manufacturing defects and wrongful design decisions can also cause bad sectors. Even new hard disk drives can suffer from manufacturing defects and bad sectors. While they are not necessarily harmful, these errors can make it impossible to recover data from them. Therefore, it’s important to seek professional help if you notice a missing sector on your hard drive.

Thankfully, there are several ways to recover a missing sector on a disk. Bad sectors can result from physical damage to the disk platter, or from transistor failure. In the case of a hard disk, bad sectors can affect both the read/write heads and the disk platter. In either case, it’s important to get the data back and restore it to a new storage device.

Bad sectors on a hard drive are usually indicative of an issue with the drive, so it’s essential to back up your data and replace the drive promptly.

The most common way to recover a missing sector on a hard drive is by performing a full format. This will scan the entire drive and remap any bad sectors to backup ones.

1. Run chkdsk.exe

If you need to recover a missing sector on a hard drive, first run the CHKDSK command. This disk diagnostic utility checks for both logical and physical errors on an array.

If it detects any errors, it will list them and suggest that you fix them. It also informs you if any of those issues require that you reinstall Windows.

It can also check the state of a volume’s file system, such as whether it’s corrupted or not. This can help identify issues within your system that you may not even be aware of.

The chkdsk command is a robust disk diagnostic utility included with Microsoft’s Windows operating system to help identify and fix logical errors in files on your computer’s hard drive. It can also scan for physical disk issues like bad sectors that prevent data from being written correctly to the disk.

Chkdsk can help identify issues before they negatively impact your system performance, and even restore data from a damaged hard drive. Therefore, running this tool as part of your regular maintenance regimen is recommended in order to keep your machine running optimally.

Before running the chkdsk command, open a Command Prompt window by clicking either on the “Run as administrator” button in your Start menu or right-clicking Command prompt and selecting “Run as administrator.”

Once in a Command Prompt window, type “chkdsk /c” into the command line, replacing “C:” with your hard drive’s drive letter. This will run the CHKDSK command on drive C; however, you may change this by typing either “chkdsk /r” or “chkdsk /f” into the same command line and replacing “C:” with your hard disk’s drive letter.

This will scan the C: drive for logical and physical disk errors, providing recommendations to fix them. It also creates a log file with details regarding the results of the scan.

2. Run ddrescue.exe

Ddrescue is a program that can recover data from failing hard drives. It can be utilized for recovering missing sectors as well as cloning a disk to another disk or partition.

The program is user-friendly and runs quickly, but caution should still be exercised when using it. Without knowledge of what you’re doing, using this software without a full system backup could prove hazardous. Thus, we strongly advise against its use without such precautions.

If a sector on your disk has failed, you should endeavor to recover it as quickly as possible. Doing this helps avoid further errors with the drive and could potentially render it unusable in the future.

To use ddrescue, you need the correct command line and options. These settings will determine how ddrescue handles a hard drive error.

Ddrescue will first read the disk and attempt to copy any sectors it can. If it cannot read them, it will retry; if retries fail, it will keep trying until successful completion of copying the entire disk to a new location.

Ddrescue will flag any sectors it can’t read as bad, so they won’t be written to the image file. This prevents recopying damaged sectors to another location.

Once ddrescue has finished its recovery process, it will create a mapfile on the output disk. This mapfile consists of three parts: heading comments, a status line and an array of data blocks.

The heading comments display the version number of ddrescue, the command line used and when it was started. The status line copies a screenshot from the screen. Finally, a list of data blocks contains contiguous, non-overlapping blocks of information.

The program will retry reads until it finds a successful one, at which point it will stop. It then remaps any bad sectors if they can be read correctly even with difficulty and erases delays for slow-reading sectors.

3. Run ddrescue.bat

Hard drives often experience degradation over time, leading to unreadable individual sectors. While this is an inevitable part of having an aging drive, it can present issues when trying to read data from the disk – especially if transferring large files.

To avoid this issue, many modern drives use spare sectors that act as buffers against bad sector errors that can damage a drive and even make it unmountable. These extra sectors act as an insurance policy against such errors.

Once a sector is determined to be unrecoverable, the drive’s firmware will mark it as such. When ddrescue attempts to recover it, however, if it cannot be read then it will move ahead to the next available sector for recovery.

The second phase of ddrescue, trimming, attempts to reduce the size of a recovered file by copying data as blocks and discarding any that cannot be recovered. This reduces its size considerably and frees up space on disk for storage.

This process is repeated until a sector can be successfully read. If this fails, the third phase of ddrescue is known as scraping. In this step, the read head attempts to read each sector several times in different directions in an effort to align itself with different sectors for improved accuracy.

After scraping, the final stage of ddrescue is called retrying. In this phase, attempts are made to read sectors marked as bad-sector again until an agreed number of retries have been made.

Ddrescue is an effective approach for recovering bad sectors, but it can take hours or days to complete a successful rescue. Therefore, it’s critical that ddrescue create a mapfile as proof of their current state; without this file, they won’t be able to resume and must start over from zero again.

4. Run

There are a few ways to recover data from a hard drive with missing sectors. However, the most reliable option is using ddrescue -a free program compatible with most Linux distributions which will clone the entire drive and then scan for data stored in those missing sectors.

Ddrescue can create a mapfile that can be used for subsequent recovery attempts. This mapfile lists all data blocks copied or trimmed and their locations, as well as any bad sectors found.

This method is quicker than using chkdsk, however it cannot guarantee you will recover all data from a hard disk with missing sectors. This is because certain errors on hard drives make it difficult for this tool to read them accurately.

A successful strategy when using ddrescue is to rapidly copy off as much data as possible and skip over any bad sectors on the disk. Doing this allows the program to save time reading data before returning a failure.

Another method you can use to recover a missing sector on a hard drive is interrogating the data with a hex editor. This will enable you to determine whether the files stored in those missing sectors are readable or not.

This method can be an effective way to recover files from a hard drive that has missing sectors, provided you know how to interrogate the data with a tool such as wxhexeditor. This tool can be run in real-time and helps determine if trying to recover data from such a disk is worth trying.

When cloning a hard disk with bad sectors, it is imperative that you do it correctly the first time. Without an initial clone file, attempts at cloning can result in complete failure of the drive; hence why cloning is highly recommended prior to any data recovery attempt on it.