Hard drive locked error during Windows 10 recovery

Hard drive locked error during Windows 10 recovery

When trying to repair or recover a Windows 10 installation from the Windows Recovery Environment, you may get an error that the drive where Windows is installed is locked. This article provides steps to resolve this issue and continue with the Windows 10 restore.

Hard drive locked during Windows 10 recovery

If you choose to refresh your PC from the Windows 10 Recovery Environment, then the following error may appear: "The drive where Windows is installed is locked. Unlock the drive and try again." To resolve the issue, follow the steps below

  1. Hit Cancel on the error message. The computer should boot to the Windows 10 Recovery Environment.
    NOTE: If the computer is able to boot into Windows, then follow the steps listed in the following article to reboot to the Windows Recovery Environment: How to access the Windows Recovery Environment in Windows 10.
  2. Click on Troubleshoot.
  3. Then click Advanced options from the Troubleshoot menu.
  4. On the Advanced options screen that appears, click the Command Prompt.
  5. At the command prompt, type bootrec /FixMbr and press Enter on the keyboard.
    NOTE: A message should appear after each command that the process completed successfully. The command prompt will then reappear, allowing you to type the next command in the list of steps below.
  6. Type bootrec /fixboot and press Enter.
  7. Type bootrec /ScanOs and press Enter.
  8. Type bootrec /RebuildBcd and press Enter.
    NOTE: A prompt for Total identified Windows installations: may now appear with the choices of Add installation to boot list? Yes<y>/No<n>/All<a>:. Type Y for Yes to continue with the rebuild process.
  9. Finally, type Exit and press Enter.
  10. The computer should reboot and allow the refresh or repair of Windows 10 to complete.

If you receive the "Hard drive is locked" error when you try to install Windows 10 from recovery media, reference the following Dell article to resolve the issue: Windows 10: Hard Drive Locked Error During Install.

If you still have an issue with the hard drive locked error after performing the steps above, contact Dell Technical Support at the following link: Dell Contact Technical Support.

Article ID: SLN304076

Last Date Modified: 06/26/2019 03:29 PM

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