How to Fix CHKDSK Stuck at Verifying USN Journal

If you're encountering a problem where CHKDSK is getting stuck at 'Verifying USN Journal' during disk check on Windows, this comprehensive guide provides solutions to resolve the issue.

Nene Aly

By Nene Aly / Updated on March 5, 2024

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If you're a Windows user, chances are you have come across CHKDSK, a built-in utility that checks the integrity of your hard drive and fixes any errors it finds. However, sometimes CHKDSK can get stuck at the 'Verifying USN Journal' stage, causing frustration and delaying the disk check process. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind this issue and provide step-by-step solutions to fix it.

The Problem: CHKDSK Stuck at Verifying USN Journal

When running CHKDSK, it may appear stuck at the 'Verifying USN Journal' stage, leading to a prolonged disk check process. This can be caused by various factors, including:

1. File System Corruption

A corrupt file system can hinder the CHKDSK process, causing it to get stuck at the 'Verifying USN Journal' stage. This corruption can occur due to sudden power outages, system crashes, or improper shutdowns.

2. Faulty Disk Drive

A malfunctioning or failing disk drive may cause CHKDSK to hang at the 'Verifying USN Journal' stage. Issues with the drive's hardware, such as bad sectors or outdated firmware, can contribute to this problem.

3. Software Conflict

In some cases, third-party software installed on your system can interfere with the CHKDSK process, causing it to freeze at the 'Verifying USN Journal' step. This conflict can occur due to incompatible applications or conflicting background processes.

Solutions to Fix CHKDSK Stuck at Verifying USN Journal

Solution 1: Check Disk Drive for Errors

To begin resolving the issue, let's start by checking your disk drive for errors using the built-in Windows Error Checking utility. Follow these steps:

  1. Open Command Prompt as an administrator by searching for 'cmd' in the Start menu, right-clicking on 'Command Prompt,' and selecting 'Run as administrator.'
  2. In the Command Prompt window, type chkdsk /f and press Enter. This command will schedule a disk check on the next system restart.
  3. Confirm the disk check by typing 'Y' and press Enter.
  4. Restart your computer to initiate the CHKDSK process. It may take some time depending on the size of your hard drive.
  5. Once the disk check completes, check if the issue persists or not.

Solution 2: Check Disk Drive Health

If Solution 1 does not resolve the problem, it is recommended to check the health of your disk drive using dedicated disk diagnostic tools. One such useful utility is CrystalDiskInfo:

CrystalDiskInfo is a free software that provides detailed information about your disk drive's health and performance. It displays attributes such as temperature, spin-up time, and reallocated sector count, allowing you to identify potential problems with your drive.

To use CrystalDiskInfo, follow these steps:

  1. Download CrystalDiskInfo from the official website and install it on your computer.
  2. Launch the program and wait for it to detect your disk drives.
  3. Review the 'Health Status' section to see if any warnings or critical issues are reported.
  4. If there are any reported problems, consider backing up your important data and replacing the failing disk drive.


Q: Why is CHKDSK getting stuck at 'Verifying USN Journal'?

There can be several reasons why CHKDSK is getting stuck at the 'Verifying USN Journal' stage. Some possible causes include file system corruption, faulty disk drive, or software conflicts.

Q: How long does CHKDSK take when stuck at 'Verifying USN Journal'?

The duration of CHKDSK when stuck at 'Verifying USN Journal' can vary depending on the size of your hard drive and the extent of the errors found. It is not uncommon for the process to take several hours.

Q: Are there any alternative disk diagnostic tools available?

Yes, apart from CrystalDiskInfo, there are other reliable disk diagnostic tools available such as HD Tune Pro and Victoria. These tools offer advanced features to assess disk health and identify potential issues.

Technical Terms Explained

1. CHKDSK: CHKDSK (short for Check Disk) is a Windows utility that scans and verifies the integrity of file systems, sectors, and file metadata on hard drives.

2. USN Journal: USN (Update Sequence Number) Journal is a feature in the NTFS file system that records changes made to files and directories. CHKDSK needs to verify the integrity of this journal during the disk check process.

3. File System: A file system is the structure and organization method used by an operating system to store, retrieve, and manage files on a storage device. Common file systems include NTFS, FAT32, and exFAT.

Tips for Preventing CHKDSK Issues

  • Regularly backup your important data to prevent data loss in case of disk errors.
  • Avoid sudden power outages or improper shutdowns that can corrupt the file system.
  • Keep your disk drive firmware up to date to avoid compatibility issues.


In conclusion, encountering the issue of CHKDSK getting stuck at 'Verifying USN Journal' can be frustrating, but with the right solutions, you can resolve the problem. We have explored the various causes behind this issue and provided step-by-step solutions to help you fix it. Remember to regularly maintain your disk drives and backup your important data to prevent any future problems.

Nene Aly
Nene Aly · Editor