Fix: The Drive Where Windows is Installed is Locked

The drive where windows is installed is locked, unlock the drive and try again” is the message shown when you try to install or restore the operating system. This is a frustrating windows error,  but no need for getting frustrated. Here are the 11 easy methods to fix this error.

What Causes This Error?

The error “The drive where windows is installed is locked” is caused when you try to install/restore or refresh your PC. This is an error message from an internal hardware failure. This error occurred due to the BCD (Boot Configuration Data) file is damaged or corrupted. Sometimes the reason behind this error is TPM (Trusted Platform Module).

If the TPM is lost or cleared, the system will not be able to boot.  Bitlocker is another reason behind this error. If the BitLocker is disabled or over-written by accident or due to third party interference, this error may appear.

11 Ways to “The drive where windows is installed is locked” Error

The drive where windows is installed is locked” this message will no more irritate you because here are the fixes which can easily resolve the problem.

Fix 1: Run chkdsk Scan

CHKDSK scan can help in fixing this error. To do so, follow these steps

  •  Boot your PC with Windows Installation Media
  •  Select language preference and click Next

  • After that, click on Repair your Computer

  •  Go to Troubleshoot and select Advanced Options

  •  Open Command Prompt

  •  Click on Command Prompt and type the following command

chkdsk c: /f  /r /x

C here represent c drive. Replace letter C with that of letter of your drive)

  • After that, press Enter

Fix 2: Run SFC Scan

System File Checker scans for corrupted system files and restores computer files. To run an SFC scan, follow these steps –

  •  Boot your PC with Windows Installation Media
  •  Select language preference and click Next

  •  Click on Repair your Computer

  •  Go to Troubleshoot and select Advanced Options

  •  Click on Command Prompt and type the following command

  • Reboot the Windows to check whether the problem is fixed or not

Fix 3: Select Correct Partition

You can also check whether the partition is correct or not.

  •  Boot from Windows Installation Media
  •  Select language preference and click Next

  •  Click on Repair your Computer

  •  Go to Troubleshoot > Advanced Options > Command Prompt

  •  Type the following commands in the Command Prompt

diskpart

  •  Press Enter

 sel disk 0

  •  Press Enter, then type

list vol

  •  Press Enter

Check the volume listed by  Command Prompt with FAT32 at the F’s column. Once you identified the volume, type the following command

sel vol 2

  •  Replace 2 with the volume’s number
  •  Press Enter
  •  Assign a new letter to this partition
  •  assign letter z :
  •  Replace z from above command with a unique letter for this partition
  •  Press Enter
  •  A confirmation message from diskpart utility will appear
  •  Diskpart successfully assigned the drive letter or mount point
  •  After that, type

exit

  •  Press Enter
  •  Then type

bootrec / fixboot

  •  Press Enter
  •  Then type

ren BCD BCD, Backup

  •  This will create a backup of the current BCD file
  •  Press Enter
  •  Then type,

 bcdboot c:\windows / 1 en-us / s x : / f ALL

  •  Replace x with a letter which you have assigned earlier
  •  Press Enter
  •  Remove the installation media
  •  Type exit
  • Press Enter
  •   Restart your pc

Fix 4: Run Automatic Repair

The automatic repair might fix “The drive where Windows is installed is locked” error on Windows 10, 8. To run automatic repair, follow these steps –

  •  Boot your PC with Windows Installation Media
  •  Select language preference and click Next

  •  Click on Repair your Computer

  •  Go to Troubleshoot

  •  Click on Automatic Repair

  •  Wait till the process completes

Fix 5: Rebuild BCD

Sometimes the reason behind the error is caused by BCD file on your computer. For fixing BCD, follow these steps –

  •  Boot your PC with Windows Installation Media
  •  Select language preferences and click Next

  •  Click on Repair your Computer

  •  Go to Troubleshoot and select Advanced Options

  •  Click on Command Prompt

  •  Type the following commands and click Enter after each command

  •  Type Exit
  •  Press Enter
  •  Restart your PC

Fix 6: Run System Restore

To run system restore, follow these steps –

  •  Boot your PC with Windows Installation Media
  •  Select language and click Next

  •  Click on Repair your Computer

  •  Go to Troubleshoot and select Advanced Options

  •  Click on System Restore

  •  Click Next
  •  After restore is done, follow the commands given on-the screen to unlock windows drive

Fix 7: Refreshing the PC

Refreshing the PC act as reinstalling of Windows without affecting personal files on your device. By doing this, an error can be fixed. For doing this, follow these steps –

  •  Boot your PC with Windows Installation Media
  •  Select language preference and click Next

  •  Click on Repair your Computer

  •  Go to Troubleshoot

  •  Click on Refresh your PC

  •  Wait till the refreshing process completes

Fix 8: Disconnect Additional Hard Drive

According to many users, “The drive where Windows is installed is locked” is caused by the harddrive. To check this, shut down your PC and disconnect all the other hard drives that do not have windows. Now check the problem is fixed or not by doing boot. If the boot process completes without any error, then this problem is fixed.

Fix 9: Check If Hard Drive Is Properly Connected

Many times, simple reasons are there behind the serious errors. If your hard drive is not properly connected to the PC, then this error might occur. Check all the connections of hardware. If this was the reason behind the error, then after proper connections are done, this error should be fixed.

Fix 10: Change BIOS Settings

According to many users, if the settings in bios are changed from Raid to Ahci, this error may occur. Changing the settings back to Raid could help in fixing this error. Follow these steps to switch from Ahci to Raid-

  •  Switch to Safe Boot
  •  Reboot into BIOS
  •  Change settings from Ahci to raid in the BIOS

  •  Boot into Safe mode

  •  Turn off safe mode and reboot normally again

If this was the reason behind this error, then by switching from Ahci to Raid might fix the error.

Fix 11: Check Boot Priority

If your hard drive isn’t set as the boot device, this error may occur. If you have more than one hard drive, you might have set a secondary hard drive as the first boot device. For fixing this, change the boot priority. Make sure that your primary hard drive is the first boot device.

Conclusion

These are the 11 best fixes for “The drive where windows is installed is locked’ error. These 11 methods are useful in fixing this error in an easy manner. If you tried them wisely, you are now using your PC without getting irritated by this error.

In case these methods didn’t work, then ask professionals for help. Hope I helped you in fixing this error. For any query regarding the topic, comment below in the comment section. Have a great day!

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