What does it mean when the tệp tin or directory is corrupted & unreadable? The file or directory is corrupted và unreadable is a comtháng error that always appears when you connect an external storage device, including external hard drive sầu, USB flash drive, SD card & more, to lớn a Windows computer, no matter which system version it runs, Windows 11, Windows 10, Windows 8 or 7. Once you see this error message, you"ll be unable khổng lồ access the data in your external storage devices.

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Sounds terrible? No need lớn panic. In this post, you"ll learn 7 effective methods lớn fix this error. Additionally, you"ll learn the reasons behind this issue so you can avoid the situation next time. Let"s dive right in!

"The tệp tin or directory is corrupted và unreadable" error can be caused by various reasons. But no matter what causes the error, you can try the following solutions to lớn fix the issue.

1. Change the Location of Inaccessible Files

This is definitely the easiest method to try if you have "The tệp tin or directory is corrupted and unreadable" issue. By changing the location of those inaccessible files, you have chance to open it normally.

2. Disable or Uninstall Anti-Virus Software

Sometimes, the antivi khuẩn software will interfere with the external hard drive and thus prsự kiện the PC lớn read the device normally. To wipe out the error, you can disable or uninstall the firewall and antivi khuẩn software. After that, restart the PC and replug in the external storage device khổng lồ check whether it works.


3. Scan Drive from Disk Properties

Actually, this is another way to check the errors on your hard drive sầu. It can fix the file system errors và scan for bad sectors. Compared to the first method, this one is much easier. Le"s kiểm tra how it works.

Double cliông chồng to lớn open (My) Computer. Locate the hard drive sầu that has the issue "The tệp tin or directory is corrupted and unreadable".

Right-click on it, & choose Properties.

Clichồng on the Tools tab. You"ll see a Check button. Click on it lớn scan the hard drive.

If there is any error found on the hard drive sầu, it"ll remind you và you can choose to repair the hard drive sầu.


4. Perkhung the Startup Repair of the Disk

To prsự kiện various errors that may happen on Windows, the developers created a build-in tool khổng lồ solve the common PC problems. And if you are irritated by the "The tệp tin or directory is corrupted & unreadable" problem, you can try the startup repair. And in the very beginning, you need to lớn boot your PC into Advanced Startup Options menu. Here is how lớn do it on Windows 11/10:

Go khổng lồ Start thực đơn > Settings > Update & security > Recovery > Restart Now.

Your computer will go inlớn an option thực đơn, then you need to click Troubleshoot và then Advanced Options.

Now your PC is in Advanced Startup Options thực đơn và you need lớn clichồng the Startup Repair option.

Now you are all done, the system will repair all the potential errors & restart after that. You can wait for the whole process lớn complete và then try plug in your external device again.


5. Persize a Disk Cheông xã through CMD on Windows 11/10/8/7

The Next thing khổng lồ vì when you encounter "The tệp tin or directory is corrupted and unreadable" error is khổng lồ persize a disk check to lớn see if there are any fixable issues on the disk. You will need lớn use the command named chkdsk for this purpose. This comm& scans the drive and fixes various issues like lost clusters, bad sectors, cross-linked files, directory errors, etc.

Follow these instructions:

Launch CMD on your Windows PC via the Start Menu. Right clichồng on it lớn run it as administrator.

Type chkdsk /f x: in the Comm& Prompt window & press Enter to exedễ thương the comm&. X here is the drive letter of the corrupted partition that you want to lớn kiểm tra. Please replace it with your own drive letter.


Once you exexinh tươi the above-mentioned commvà, Windows will scan the drive sầu. It always contains 3 stages, & the checking time totally depends on your data kích cỡ and the read tốc độ of the drive sầu. During the checking process, it will fix the error simultaneously. Once done, the File Explorer will refresh, & the hard drive will be accessible.

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If you see a message like "Chkdsk cannot run because the volume is in use by another process. Would you lượt thích lớn schedule this volume to lớn be checked the next time the system restarts? (Y/N)", you can type Y and restart your computer lớn finish the check. Your disk won"t be formatted.

After you exeđáng yêu the comm& line, there is a possibility that you"ll see another message - Cannot open volume for direct access. It means that there is something blocking you from repairing the errors. If that"s the case, you can try lớn restart your computer.

Additionally, Unable lớn determine volume version & state. CHKDSK aborted. is another common message you"ll see. It means that the information inside the volume is corrupted. The fastest way lớn solve sầu this issue is by reformatting the volume.

6. Format the Device without Losing Data

If the above 5 solutions failed, then you can only lớn format the hard drive sầu. Formatting the hard drive will fix the problem but it will also erase your valuable files. However, you can use a tool to lớn extract or recover the important files on your hard disk before and after formatting it.

There are 3 ways to lớn format a hard drive sầu khổng lồ fix "The file or directory is corrupted & unreadable" issue.

Let"s break each method down.

Method 1: Format from File Explorer

Open My Computer/This PC và navigate khổng lồ your damaged external hard drive.

Right-cliông chồng on it và then cliông xã the Format option.

Now choose the tệp tin system và also tick the Quiông xã Format under Format options. Next, clichồng on the Start button lớn start formatting.

Method 2: Format from Disk Management

Right-cliông xã on the Windows button. Choose Disk Management from the các mục.

Locate your damaged hard disk và right-click on it. You"ll see a Format option.

Click on it and the Format dialog will appear. Customize the settings & press OK khổng lồ begin lớn process.

Method 3: Format a Hard Drive using Command Prompt

This method is a little bit complicated & time-consuming. And a mistake will cause damage to lớn your operating system or other important data. Therefore, please follow the guideline below closely.

Type Comm& Prompt in the search bar. Navigate to it và run as administrator.

Type diskpart và press Enter.

Type danh mục disk & press Enter.

A các mục of the available hard disks will show up. Type select disk x & press Enter. You should replace x with the real disk number that you want to lớn format.

Type clean. Please make sure that you have typed the correct disk number in the last step before you press Enter here.

Once done, you need lớn create a new partition so that your hard disk is accessible. So, we need to type the command create partition primary here.

Now, format your hard disk to a new file system. The commvà needs to enter here is format fs=ntfs.

Finally, type assign lớn assign a drive letter for the partition.

Extract and Recover All Your Files from Hard Disk Before or After Formatting

Some people may suffer from data loss during the repair process & wonder how to lớn save the situation. That"s why we recommkết thúc this tool lớn you. phamnhantutien.vn is a powerful tool that can extract all your files from a hard disk before you format it. Apart from that, it can also recover data from your formatted hard disk as long as the data has not been overwritten. (In order to increase the chance of data recovery, it"s recommended not to lớn write data to lớn your hard disk after formatting.)

Most importantly, even if you failed khổng lồ open files with the methods above sầu, the build-in repair function of phamnhantutien.vn can help you open the corrupted files normally. In a word, by using phamnhantutien.vn, all scanned data can be extracted or recovered và kept original.

Why should you use phamnhantutien.vn:

Fast Scanning: It adopts all-round scan và deep scan that can greatly increase the scanning tốc độ. Easy lớn Use: Using the software is also very easy thanks lớn its user-friendly interface. You can extract or recover all files with just a few clicks. Wide Range of Application: Supports over 1000 tệp tin formats recovery, including photos, videos, music, documents (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, PDF, etc.), archive, email, etc. Free to Try: You can extract or recover 8 files for không tính tiền, no size limit.Broad Compatibility: Works well with Windows 11/10/8/7 as well as all macOS versions.
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Here is how lớn use phamnhantutien.vn:

Step 1. Firstly, launch phamnhantutien.vn on your computer & select the location where you lost data.


Step 2. After clicking on the Start button, the program will start an all-round scan & deep scan simultaneously on the location you selected.


Step 3. Finally, preview the scanned files and select those files you want to recover or extract, then clichồng on Recover button to lớn get your lost data baông chồng.


7. Reinstall or Downgrade the Windows System

The final resort for you is to lớn reinstall the existing Windows version if your PC is running a version below Windows 11. And if it is running Windows 11 now, you can try lớn downgrade it as the newest system version is buggy và vulnerable. By reinstalling or downgrading the system, all the hidden issues can be solved effectively, whereas you may face much severer problems & data loss. Anyway, it is a way out & you can have a try.

Part 2: Causes for "The File or Directory is Corrupted and Unreadable"

There are various reasons behind the error. Once you learn the causes of this error, you can avoid this situation next time.

Cause 1: Corrupted FAT or MFT

The NTFS file system contains a tệp tin called MFT (Master File Table). It stores the type, kích thước, date/time of creation, date/time of modification, and any other information of a file or directory. Therefore, once MFT gets damaged, the system won"t be able to lớn access the partition with NTFS tệp tin system.

FAT is a tệp tin system developed for hard drives. The same as MFT, FAT is also used to lớn store file information. So, the damaged FAT will also lead lớn "The tệp tin or directory is corrupted & unreadable" error.

Cause 2: Physical Damage

Some physical damage khổng lồ the hard disk can cause bad sectors. If a disk sector is permanently damaged, all information stored on that sector will get lost. When a bad sector is detected and marked, the operating system can access the data on it.

Cause 3: Improper Operations

If you eject a hard disk or a USB flash drive from the computer when it"s transferring or reading the data, you"ll thua trận some important files containing system information. In fact, this is the main reason for the error.

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Cause 4: Virus Infection

When you surf the Internet or download some programs from inofficial websites, there is a great possibility that your computer will be infected with virus. Obviously, those viruses will damage your file, your operating system, even the external devices you connected lớn the computer.


The physical damage to the hard disk, improper operations and virut infection will all lead lớn the issue of "The file or directory is corrupted & unreadable" in Windows 11/10/8/7. So, it"s important khổng lồ protect your hard disk from physical damage and install some anti-virut programs on your computer to disinfect the disk regularly. We hope the methods above sầu can help you solve sầu this problem, và if you suffer from data loss during the process, phamnhantutien.vn is always ready to lớn give sầu you a h&. Just tải về và give sầu it a try!