3 Fixes For The Disk Does Not Have Enough Space To Replace Bad Clusters

Sometimes when you run CHKDSK to perform a simple disk check, Windows will show an error saying, “The drive does not have enough space to replace bad clusters.”

Windows comes with its built-in utility tool, CHKDSK (Check Disk), which allows users to check and repair files on their hard drives. However, many users have faced bad clusters or storage-related errors while running this tool.

The CHKDSK error indicates that your hard drive has bad sectors on it, and there are no free good sectors available by which CHKDSK can replace the bad sectors. Since the hard drive contains a lot of bad sectors, it fails.

The bad clusters error is not restricted to any particular Windows version and can occur on the versions, including Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10, and Windows 11. In our post, we will be providing you with the causes and possible methods to fix the “The drive does not have enough space to replace bad clusters” error message.

Apart from the “The disk does not have enough space to replace bad clusters” error, there are a few more related problems for your disk drive that the CHKDSK utility raises.

  • The Drive Does Not Have Enough Space To Be Successfully Partitioned – You can fix the error by navigating to the Time Machine System preferences and turning off the Automatic backup option. After that, you should delete all the backup drives from the system and restart your computer.
  • CHKDSK Not Working – The best method to fix this error is by disabling the hybrid root from Windows 10. Alternatively, you can repair the autochk.exe file to help fix the error. If you have set up a system restore point, you can use that to restore your system to the point when your PC was working fine. Please remember restoring your system back in time will cause data loss.
  • The Disk Does Not Have Enough Storage Space To Replace Bad Clusters Detected In File – It is possible that the hard drive which you are using has failed or is in the process of failing. You can follow the methods in the article to fix the error.
  • CHKDSK Insufficient Disk Space – It could be possible that your hard disk drive is corrupted, and hence you are getting the error. If your drive is corrupted, backup the data on the drive and replace it with a new one. Many users have found that disabling the antivirus installed on your PC can fix this problem.
  • The Drive Does Not Have Enough Storage Space To Replace Bad Clusters External Hard Drive – There is a high chance of disk failure; hence make sure that you have backed up all the data on the failing drive. You can follow the data backup guidelines provided in this article to copy all data from the drive into an external drive by creating an image of the failing drive. You can also apply other methods given in the article.
  • CHKDSK Access Denied – If you are logged into your system from a user or guest account, you should log in using the admin account as CHKDSK requires admin privileges to perform some of its actions. After logging in as admin, run the CHKDSK utility again and wait for the process to finish.

What Causes The Error “The Disk Drive Does Not Have Enough Space To Replace Bad Clusters” Issue In Windows 10?

Before we get into the causes for the disk error, let us understand what sectors are and what free disk space CHKDSK refers to in the error message. It is imperative to understand that the “free” disk space is different from the common disk space.

Apart from the space you see on a hard disk, there is a specific unallocated space in every disk where the bad sectors can be stored and replaced. A disk can have multiple sectors, and each sector has a number assigned to it. At the drive’s end, there are some non-numbered extra sectors that are used in cases when any numbered sector goes bad and needs to be replaced.

CHKDSK is a Windows utility that allows bad sectors to be removed and replaces the bad sector by assigning it to an un-numbered sector. For users getting the “The disk does not have enough space to replace bad clusters” error, it is most likely that the space on your disk where un-numbered extra sectors are stored is full of bad sectors, and there are no good sectors to replace the bad ones.

After doing thorough research and listening to people on various forums, we have found repair strategies that you can use to fix the failing hard drive. The most common scenarios that lead to the “not enough disk space” error message are:

  • Failing hard disk drive: CHKDSK identifying a large number of failing sectors or bad sectors signifies that your hard drive is failing. While running CHKDSK utility or any other disk utility tool, if new bad sectors are found consistently, it means that your drive will become unusable in the near future as it has a lot of bad sectors. In this scenario, we recommend that you replace or backup the hard drive to avoid any potential data loss.
  • Littoral disk crash: Littoral disk crash occurs when there is a sudden power loss, or your machine shuts down abruptly. “The Disk does not have enough storage space to replace bad sectors” error message is commonly encountered in this scenario. If you face such unexpected power or machine shutdown, allow CHKDSK to complete the disk scanning to ensure how much drive is affected.

There could be several other causes for why your drive is failing. In the upcoming section, we have highlighted the best possible solutions to help you fix the CHKDSK error.

Fix CHKDSK Error: The Disk Does Not Have Enough Space To Replace Bad Sectors

Any hard drive is designed in such a way that it can never run out of sectors throughout its lifespan, generally five years. Suppose you have recently bought a new hard disk drive and are facing a storage error, it implies that the drive is generating a large number of bad sectors and is unable to replace them.

Most of the users that face the CHKDSK “The Disk Does Not Have Enough Space To Replace Bad Sectors” error where there is not enough space to replace bad sectors on a hard disk drive have been able to fix the error using the methods in our guide.

Various users have successfully tested the methods mentioned in our article in resolving the CHKDSK error. We suggest you take back up before you follow along with our solutions.

  1. Wait For The CHKDSK Process To Complete
  2. Using Third-Party App To Regenerate Bad Clusters
  3. Backing Up Your Hard Drive & Replace The Failing Drive

Method 1: Wait For The CHKDSK Process To Complete

While running CHKDSK, if you are getting the “The Disk Does Not Have Enough Space To Replace Bad Sectors” error, don’t rush to close the utility and wait for CHKDSK to complete the process.

It will take time to complete while the utility tries to repair the drive; hence even though you are getting the error, there’s still a chance that the CHKDSK scan will be able to fix it.

Since it is a lengthy process and sometimes it might take more than four hours, you should remember that it will take a while for the scanning to complete. If, after all the wait, CHKDSK isn’t able to replace the bad clusters and faces storage issues,

Method 2: Using Third-Party App To Regenerate Bad Clusters

If you are fortunate enough, you will notice that even though CHKDSK couldn’t fix a portion of the bad sectors on your hard drive, the drive still has some good sectors which are reliable. Using reliable isolation methods, you can make partitions on your disk in a way that the bad sectors won’t be a part of the partition.

There are multiple third-party applications available that will allow you to do this kind of isolation. Some of these products are free, while others are paid.

Don’t worry. We understand your need to use a free alternative that can do the job of any other paid software with a few more configurations. Many users have found freeware such as Victoria and HDD regenerator that can detect and fix bad sectors from your hard disk drive or external hard drive without costing you a dime.

Using Victoria to regenerate bad clusters

Victoria is a third-party freeware that you can use to detect and fix the bad sectors by isolating the good sectors and partitioning them. Below are some methods for you to follow to regenerate and use bad clusters using Victoria:

Download Victoria from SoftPedia

Step 1. Start by downloading the archive with the latest version of Victoria from the following websites: MajorGeeks, Softpedia, SoftFamous. On these websites, you would find a variety of archives or download directories. We suggest that you download a version that is older than 4.2.

Victoria downloading to repair the bad clusters

Step 2. After the Victoria archive is downloaded, you need to extract the contents of the folder using WinZip or 7-Zip extractors and save it in another folder, say “Victoria.”

Extract files in Victoria folder from zip

Step 3. Please go into the newly created Victoria folder and locate the Victoria.exe file in it. Please right-click on the file and choose Run as Administrator. This will allow the program to run with admin privileges.

Run Victoria.exe as administrator to fix the disk does not have enough space to replace bad clusters error

Step 4. In the running Victoria application, go to Standard and navigate to the hard disk drive that is giving rise to the “Disk does not have enough storage space to replace bad sectors” error from the list of hard disk drives listed on the right-hand panel.

Step 5. Next, head over to the Smart tab and click on the Get SMART button. It will offer you a thorough analysis of what is happening to your disk. The Get SMART button doesn’t work on USB drives so ensure that you are checking the right hard drive. There are two particular things that you should look for:

  • Once the analysis completes, check the Reallocated sector count. A number higher than 10 implies that your disk truly has bad sectors, and the CHKDSK error was not a false positive.
  • Near the Get SMART button, the status of your drive is displayed. If it says GOOD, you will probably be able to resolve the hard drive issues and continue using the HDD.

Step 6. Switch to the Tests tab in the application and click on the Scan button to begin scanning the entire drive for problems. The default settings of the scan ensure that the process scans your entire drive. However, if you know where the bad sectors are located on your drive, you can adjust the Start LBA, and End LBA attributes of the drive to focus the search better.

Step 7. Once the scanning begins, navigate to the write speed menu located below. From the list, choose to Remap toggle to ensure that the application replaces the bad sectors with good sectors from the reserved area.

Step 8. After the drive scanning is complete, close the Victoria application and run the CHKDSK scan to verify if the “The Disk Does Not Have Enough Storage Space To Replace Bad Clusters” error is fixed.

Step 9. If Victoria wasn’t able to fix it the first time, repeat step 7 to run another scan but this time, choose the Refresh option to repair any damages that are at the software level. 

Step 10. Please Restart your computer after the scan completes and run CHKDSK to check if the error persists.

Using HDD regenerator to regenerate bad clusters

HDD regenerator is paid third-party software that can help you regenerate bad sectors and fix your hard drive. Here is the process that you should follow:

Step 1. You can download the HDD regenerator from its website here. Once HDD is downloaded, follow the on-screen instructions to install the software on your computer.

Download HDD regenerator to regenerate bad clusters

Step 2. After the HDD regenerator is installed, right-click on it and choose Run as administrator.

Step 3. Now, insert any blank or empty USB flash drive in your system and choose Bootable flash drive from the options in the HDD regenerator.

Step 4. Next, click on Reset Flash Size and follow up with clicking OK and OK again.

Step 5. Once confirmed, the software will ask permission to restart your computer. Allow it by confirming your selection.

Step 6. When your system boots, you will be booted into this utility. Suppose you aren’t. Open BIOS settings and check Boot Priority by providing the priority to the USB flash drive.

Step 7. In the utility, choose the hard disk drive that is giving you the error and hit the enter key.

Step 8. In the options visible on the screen, hit the 2 key and then the enter key.

Step 9. Allow the process to complete. Please wait patiently as it might take some time.

Step 10. Once the process ends, you will be shown all the information related to your hard disk drive on your screen.

Step 11. Make sure that the bad sectors that can be Repaired/Regenerated should be regenerated or repaired as needed.

Step 12. Once everything is done, restart your computer after removing the flash drive.

Using the Victoria and HDD regenerator software is an effective way to repair the bad clusters and make the affected drive reliable. However, if, after using the software, you aren’t able to fix the CHKDSK error, maybe it is time you choose to replace the failing drive.

 Method 3: Backing Up Your Hard Drive & Replace The Failing Drive

The above two methods are the best and most successful solutions used by many users to fix the CHKDSK error. However, for some reasons that the solutions might not be working for you, you should consider replacing the failing hard drive.

The above methods are expected to work only if your drive has enough good sectors left to replace the bad sectors. The fact that the solutions didn’t work for you implies that your drive has an alarmingly high number of bad sectors and needs replacing.

It is impossible to stop your drive from failing, and eventually, the bad sectors will grow to the extent that they will start eating up your data from good sectors.

The best course of action is to create a backup for your data early on and replace the failing disk before you start losing data. There are multiple ways that you can use to back up your data. You can use third-party applications to create a backup for your data.

How to Backup Your Files?

Third-party tools such as DiskInternals Partition Recovery allows users to save the image of their hard drive to protect against any potential data loss. Here’s how you can use the software to backup data:

Step 1. From the DiskInternals Partition Recovery website, download and install the application by following the on-screen instructions.

Step 2. Once installed, launch the DiskInternals software. Close the help wizard interface to launch the software automatically.

Step 3. In the software, choose the failing drive and right-click on it.

Step 4. From the open context menu, choose to Create Image option.

Step 5. Follow the on-screen instructions and prompts to back up your files from the drive.

While saving the image of the disk, you should save it in a secondary drive or any drive other than the one being backed up. Once you have replaced the failing hard drive, you should use the DiskInternals Partition Recovery software to mount back the disk image from the old drive.

You can also use this software to recover lost and deleted files. DiskInternals allows users to recover some important files or an entire partition. The software is supported by all Windows Operating Systems and multiple file formats.

Bottom Line

Every tip and trick that users might require to fix the “The Disk Does Not Have Enough Space To Replace Bad Clusters” error has been provided in the article after careful inspection. If nothing works, replacing the drive is your last course of action that will definitely fix the error.

Once you have resolved the error, you can avoid facing the same problem again in the future by making sure that you do the following:

  • Shutting down the PC properly
  • Using power backups or inverters to protect from abrupt power loss.

Although the methods provided in the guide are tested and verified by various users, if they don’t work out for you and you are unable to fix the CHKDSK error, you should contact the PC repair center.

The specialists there will check the root cause of the problem and fix the error. They might use a different technique to fix the error depending on the cause of the error.

Lastly, if nothing else in the article works, you can always replace the drive with a new one after backing up the data from the old drive and restoring it on the new one to refrain from any data loss.