In Windows versions before Windows 8, if your hard drive partition was marked dirty due to an improper shutdown, or due to corruption or bad sectors, Chkdsk ran while Windows was booting to fix any drive errors. You had a choice to cancel the disk check and continue to boot Windows, before it started scanning and fixing errors. However, starting with Windows 8, the Chkdsk timeout is set to 0 by default so it no longer allows you to cancel the disk check. Also, the automatic repair mechanism kicks in by default which we showed can be disabled. In this article, we will look at how to set the timeout before Chkdsk starts so you get time to cancel the disk check.
The delay can be configured by Registry Editing. Follow the instruction below to change it.
- Open Registry Editor (Tip: see our detailed tutorial about Registry Editor).
- Navigate to the following key:
Tip: You can access any desired Registry key with one click.
If you do not have this key, then just create it.
- In the right pane of Registry Editor, create or modify a DWORD value named AutoChkTimeout. Its value data means the timeout in seconds, which must be specified in decimals.
To set it to 10 seconds, set the AutoChkTimeout value to 10 in decimal, as shown in the picture above. So, you will have 10 seconds before Chkdsk will start checking your hard drive during the OS boot.
That's it. Clearly, the team that made Windows didn't respect the 'user-in-control' principle. Not giving an easy way to disable automatic repair and automatic Chkdsk is not a friendly decision.