Drive Where Windows is Installed is Locked

alexdale94

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Oct 22, 2013
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I upgraded to Windows 8.1 yesterday and I have been having trouble so I am trying to do a Refresh.
It says "the drive where windows is installed is locked. Unlock the drive and try again"
What is wrong? What do I do?
 

realAMDfreak

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Nov 6, 2013
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If you are using PCIE SSD, below can be found the data recovery solution, because no other solution works. Tried so many, too many actually.



1.) Insert a spare drive in your PC.

2.) Run the clean installation of win 8 on that drive.

3.) When logging into Win for the first time, install the PCIE SSD drivers.

4.) Run "chkdsk F: /f". F: denotes your PCIE SSD drive after its driver installation. It could be another drive letter.

5.) Now if you use Command Prompt you can see the files on the PCIE SSD. If you use Eplorer it will not be possible.

6.) Find a good recovery program to recover the data on the external drive. Or if you know DOS commands use those.

7.) Clean install win 8 on PCIE SSD and format the old spare drive.



Microsoft really did a "great" job. Yesterday my PC was working just fine. Today I turned it on I saw only the black screen with white cursor in the top left corner after the BIOS screen. F8 command did not work. Win 8 installation cd neither. It has lousy support for PCIE SSDs. Luckily I could get my data back, otherwise ...



What is worse they are trying to disguise it as virus when it was the Win Update which shabanged everything.
 

johnbl

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Nov 4, 2012
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you might want to run diskpart.exe as a admin
and see if your disk or partition has been marked as read only.

start cmd.exe as a admin
diskpart.exe
list disk
select disk 0 <----------- from the output of the previous command
attributes disk <-------- displays the attributes of that drive

see if it is marked as readonly
here is what mine shows:
DISKPART> attributes disk
Current Read-only State : No
Read-only : No
Boot Disk : No
Pagefile Disk : No
Hibernation File Disk : No
Crashdump Disk : No
Clustered Disk : No

if it is not marked readonly i would check the partition tables attrbutes

list volume
seclect volume 2 <-------- this is my windows drive
attributes volume <---------this will dump your volume info

here is what mine looks like:

DISKPART> attributes volume
Read-only : No
Hidden : No
No Default Drive Letter: No
Shadow Copy : No

again you are looking for it being marked as readonly.

if they are marked readonly you can clear the attribute

all else fails you can run repair commands to fix the boot record

with bootrec.exe

bootrec /fixmbr
bootrec.exe /fixboot
bootrec.exe /RebuildBcd

sorry if this seems complex, it is just a shame to have to wipe a drive for this problem


 

sevans011

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Jan 18, 2014
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johnbl
i have attributes listed as readonly. in your response you say to clear the attributes, but i dont see where you indicate how to do that. howdo i change them form yes to no?
 

johnbl

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http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc766465(v=ws.10).aspx
or
http://pario.no/2011/05/23/clear-read-only-flag-on-disk-in-windows-7-using-diskpart/

it has been a while but I think you will want to
select disk 0 (or the disk you want to change the attribute for)
list disk
attributes disk clear readonly
list disk <- to confirm you got the right setting
exit

(you use the set to turn on the readonly and clear to remove i)


 

Bobbin54

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Apr 18, 2014
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I had the same problem. After working fine for months, Windows 8 (on an SSD) would not boot. I booted the machine from Win 8 CD; automatic repair and refresh did not work, diskpart and bootrec suggestions did not work. A simple solution that I did not expect to work actually worked: I put the SSD into an external USB sata disk cradle, and plugged that into another Windows 8 machine. The SSD and its volume was recognized and I was able to copy all of the data off of it.
 

imatari

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May 2, 2014
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my impasse was because, Under Bios, under Advanced, i had the CSM setting.
I switched it to UEFI and it was then that I didn't get the "Drive where windows is installed is locked"
 

Izou

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Sep 27, 2014
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Hello! I have an Asus S46 running win8.1,and suddently I get the error "the boot configuration data file is missing". I can access to Windows setup options by pushing F9 button during starting up. From there,I tried to recover Windows but it said "drive is locked"...so I searched on the web and found your topic here. In fact I didnt try to unlock the disk,I directly tried your commands with bootrec (below). And it worked very well!! Thank you soooooo much! The 3 operations were successfull and then windows ran normally. Thank you so much! 5min needed!


 

David Lara

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Oct 25, 2014
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My laptop wasn't acting right so I decided to refresh it by booting the system and selecting recovery then refresh your laptop, so, right away after that, notification says my drive is locked and has to be unlocked before proceeding, after trying this a couple of times and Google it for a while I couldn't get it to work. BUT if you boot you system normally then go to control panel then type in the search box " recovery " it will give you options to perform the same task which is to refresh your system to almost the factory installation which will delete installed programs but will keep your docs, It will take a while either way you try, you can accomplish this just doing it from the control panel and I found no way to do it from the boot screen. So as long as you can boot your system to access the control panel this is working right now as I type.

Hope we all can accomplish this and can be helpful to all of us.
 

Networking101

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Dec 4, 2014
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It wont let you do an auto repair when the disk is locked, it wont let you repair anything you have to load into cmd.
 

moshe3450

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Dec 9, 2014
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If you can't to solve this problem by this solution :

I tried this solution and it worked on my computer for my specific failure...

1. get access to windows repair.

2. rename of c:\windows directory to something other name as "WindowsBak".

3. Restart + F9 (repair console).

4. Then choose -> "troubleshoot"

5. "Reset your computer" - "refresh" will not be work because it's depending on windows installation on your c:, but reset strongest.

Now your computer will be as new...
 

Nik Hamiter

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Dec 15, 2014
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I just went through that last step you described. What should I be seeing it says succefully completed but nothing changes.
 

Scatter121

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Feb 3, 2015
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The DISKPART scenario worked fine. My initial SSD with Win8.1 was set to Read-Only. Now it's formatted.
Thanks.
 

Bram Hertanto

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Mar 21, 2015
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you are the man, this is awesome thanks in advance
 

willisjohn

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Apr 9, 2015
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If you are just getting started loading windows 8.1 from a cd and everything is locked. go to your system bios and tell it to boot from your cd drive only Boot your computer, do a repair and then turn your hard drive back on.
 

Craigf48

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May 13, 2015
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I did a clean install of w8.1 in Feb. just now I fired it up and got the errors reported in this thread.

When I ran disk part and listed the disks my SSD PCIE drive is missing. I ran bootrec /scanos and it couldn't find an installation of windows.

Strange as the drive is listed in my Bios and I when I force post the bios I can see the drive is recognised and initialised.

Any ideas?

Thanks
 

Tonehenge

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May 24, 2015
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4,510
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This was my fix, using the USB recovery disc. Nice and painless and thank you!!!
 

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