The file or directory is corrupted and unreadable


Have you ever encountered the tệp tin or directory is corrupted or unreadable issue? Do you feel confused about it? This post will show you the possible reasons & responding solutions to the issue, & some tips on protecting data in USB drives. It would help you resolve the problem effectively & quickly.

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Error: The File or Directory is Corrupted và Unreadable

Have sầu you ever encountered the error message that saying "tệp tin or directory is corrupted & unreadable" when using a USB drive sầu under Windows operating system? (Sometimes the error message could be "You need khổng lồ format the disk in drive X:before you can use it. Do you want to lớn format it?") Such problem may happen to lớn anyone. Seeing this error message, you cannot access the data in the USB hard drive sầu partitions.



By checking the file system of the USB drive, you are likely lớn find that it is RAW file system. If you are unable to lớn find a way to lớn fix this error message and access the partition on that USB drive sầu successfully, the direct result then is tệp tin loss. "What caused this error message? And how can I solve sầu this issue? "Next we will show you all you want to lớn know. 

4 Causes for "The File or Directory is Corrupted và Unreadable"

Although partition not accessible error is comtháng to many of us, yet the causes remain unknown to most users. Why did this error happen? In general, if file, folder, MFT, FAT or the USB drive sầu gets damaged due to certain reasons, this error will appear. Let"s see the details:

Cause 1: MFT or FAT corruption

To Windows users, the most frequently used tệp tin systems are NTFS & FAT. Then what is MFT? MFT is short for Master File Table and is included in NTFS file system, playing an important role in tệp tin storage. All the information about a file such as tệp tin kích cỡ, creation time, và access permissions is stored in MFT entries. Also tệp tin recovery software retrieves lost data by analyzing MFT information. Therefore, once MFT gets damaged, system won"t be able khổng lồ access data from the NTFS partitions.

Cause 2: Virus infection

Today people browse seas of sites every day for all info they need, such as working, study materials, entertainment, & so on. During the process of surfing the internet, users are likely to tải về or install malicious program to computer. Thus their computers can easily get infected with virus.

The consequence is obvious, these viruses can delete important files without informing, corrupt partition information, damage operating system, or even infect other devices connected khổng lồ virus-affected computer. Once virus damages the tệp tin system of the disk, that specific partition will become inaccessible, and files on that drive sầu are no longer available for comtháng visit. At this time, opening anti-virut program to carry out anti-vi khuẩn is too late for data retrieve.

Cause 3: Physical issues

Bad sectors are another cause for unreadable partition on USB drive sầu or flash drive sầu. Bad sector is a kind of sector that is no longer accessible or writeable due to lớn permanent damage. Partition information such as file system is saved on a specific location. If this location includes bad sectors, then the operating system will fail lớn access data. At this time users will get the error messages "The file or directory is corrupted & unreadable".

Cause 4: USB drives are not safely removed from PC

If you force lớn unplug a USB drive from computer when the drive sầu is still in working state lượt thích transferring or reading data, then there is risk of losing vital files of system information. What’s strange is that this is the most comtháng reason that leads lớn this error - a comtháng sense we all know but tend to ignore for convenience…

So next time when you are going to lớn unplug an external hard drive sầu, make sure that operating system has done on saving or transferring data khổng lồ the drive. Then clichồng on the "Safely Remove sầu Hardware" option on the notification area of the screen and then unplug the drive sầu.

These four reasons for "the tệp tin or directory is corrupted and unreadable" proves lớn be useful for me lớn avoid this issue again. And I think they are also helpful to you…Cliông xã to tweet

3 Solutions to lớn "The File or Directory is Corrupted and Unreadable"

Tip: Before we cut into point, we would like to recommover users to download two programs to lớn PC: Free partition magic -MiniTool Partition Wizard.

Free Download 

Solution 1: Carry out Chkdsk lớn kiểm tra & repair errors

Chkdsk.exe cộ is a command-line tool offered by Windows to kiểm tra & repair volume errors. This tool tries khổng lồ repair any problem it finds out, for example, lost clusters, cross-linked files, directory errors, etc. How khổng lồ carry out Chkdsk? Take Windows 10 for example.

Step 1: Run Comm& Prompt as administrator: cliông chồng Start button and tìm kiếm for Comm& Prompt, then right-cliông xã it và select Run as administrator.


Step 2: In the following message box, clichồng Yes to lớn allow it khổng lồ change your computer.

Step 3: In the commvà prompt box, continue lớn type chkdsk /f h: và press Enter. H is the drive sầu letter of the unreadable partition và it can be other drive letters according khổng lồ your real situation. This takes some time to finish the process, & is largely related lớn the amount of files và folders on that partition, the read tốc độ of the drive sầu, the capacity of the volume, etc.


Note: If you see the message "Chkdsk cannot run because the volume is in use by another process. Would you lượt thích lớn schedule this volume lớn be checked the next time the system restarts?" you are expected to type Y and hit Enter key, and then restart your computer to lớn resume the disk kiểm tra.

Although Chkdsk is always the way that comes khổng lồ mind at first time, it won"t work in some cases, & sometimes it may over-repair items, leading to difficulty for tệp tin recovery. Thus this tool is not suggested to fix error if you want lớn recover data.

Solution 2: Format the corrupted partition for reuse

Perkhung Data Recovery First

Formatting process configures hard disk with new tệp tin system, after which the old and corrupted file system will be replaced. However, formatting will definitely lead to data loss. So before you start, vì chưng necessary data recovery (MiniTool Partition Wizard can recover 1GB data for free).

Free Download

Step 1.

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Enter Data Recovery from the toolbar (or you may just select the unreadable partition and choose Data Recovery from the context menu.)


Step 2. Now you have sầu khổng lồ figure out which is the problematic partition và then double click on it khổng lồ have a full scan. (If you only want to recover a specific type of tệp tin, you can first of all go to lớn Settings lớn uncheck all tệp tin systems and choose then desired tệp tin type.)


Step 3. The recovering process will take some time, & you should be able to lớn view the scanning results from the left panel. please wait patiently until the scanning process finishes và then find the files to recover. You need lớn kiểm tra files you need & save to a different location.



Format unreadable partition

Here we would like khổng lồ make an explanation: Disk Management is also capable of formatting a drive sầu, but Windows won"t allow lớn create/format a partition lớn FAT32 as long as the partition kích cỡ is larger than 32GB. What if you just want lớn employ FAT32 tệp tin system (for using on PS4 or something else)? How can you achieve sầu this goal?

You can totally rely on MiniTool Partition Wizard Free which gives you much more file system options and rare limits.

Free Download

The following guide mainly aims khổng lồ deal with unreadable partitions shown as Other in MiniTool Partition Wizard. In fact, no matter what file system you see, you can follow this guide.

Step 1: Launch không lấy phí MiniTool Partition Wizard. In the main interface, choose the corrupted partition you want khổng lồ format lớn FAT32 và press Delete.


Step 2: Then recreate a partition and choose lớn format it to FAT32 partition.


Step 3: Cliông chồng Apply khổng lồ confirm changes.


Tip: For other file systems, MiniTool Partition Wizard can directly format it khổng lồ FAT32 partition without deletion and recreation.

Solution 3: Cheông xã if the drive sầu has bad sectors

Partition Wizard is a versatile and useful tool which can be used to kiểm tra bad sectors, manage partitions, recover partitions, and more.

Step 1: Install and launch MiniTool Partition Wizard & you"ll see its main interface in which information about all your disks & partitions connected to computer is clearly shown.

Step 2: Right-click the unreadable partition và select Surface Test. Click Start Now và the program starts lớn scan the partition.


Step 3: When the scanning is finished, it reports how many bad sectors there is on the unreadable partition (in my case it"s 0).If there are bad sectors, please think twice whether the data in this drive sầu means a lot to you. If YES, before you send it to lớn repair center or throw it away directly, you should perkhung data recovery at once instead. And you need the help of data recovery feature of MiniTool Partition Wizard.


Useful Tips on Protecting Data in USB Drives

Take good care of your USB drives. Please take care of your hard drives, especially the removable ones. Protect them from being damaged or destroyed.Kill virut regularly. Hard drives can be easily affected by virut, especially when it was connected with stranger PCs. Thus anti-vi khuẩn program should be installed and updated regularly lớn prsự kiện files from being damaged by vi khuẩn or malware. In addition, vị not insert un-trusted USB drive sầu to your PC, for the drive may carry scared vi khuẩn.Remove hardware safely. Before unplugging from USB port, move mouse lớn the lower right corner & press the SAFELY REMOVE HARDWARE ibé in notification bar khổng lồ eject USB drives.NEVER FORMAT before data recovery. If you fail lớn access a drive sầu, vì not persize formatting if the corrupted partition contains important data. File & partition recovery should be the first consideration.

Bottom Line

In this post, we mainly talk about why "The file or directory is corrupted and unreadable" error occurs, và put forward three solutions to lớn fix unreadable partition. Besides, to avoid data loss, we should take good care of our drives & make a backup in advance. For any questions or suggestions related to lớn this issue, please leave us comment below or send an gmail lớn . We read every thread.



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Position: Columnist

Rodin is an enthusiastic IT writer focusing on Windows trends, disk partition management & data recovery. She loves lớn write & chia sẻ her idea about the useful tips & tricks on personal computers" maintenance.

If you are looking for methods lớn improve sầu your computer performance, manage hard drives and recover data from different devices, Rodin can provide reliable solutions for data management.