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Recover data from damaged or formatted VMFS disks or VMDK files
Recover data from damaged or formatted VMFS disks or VMDK files
Last updated: May 02, 2024

How to Recover VHDX Files in Windows?

VHDX, the successor file format for VHD is Microsoft’s native file system format for its Hyper-V platform. Although not widely used nowadays, this file system is one of the three most popular virtual hard disk formats and it supports up to 62 TB storage. You can convert VHDX files to other virtual hard drive formats like VMDK and VDI. But then, if you found out your VHDX files suddenly got lost from where you saved them, this article provides a detailed guide on how to get them back.

What is VHDX File?

Virtual Hard Disk Extended (VHDX) is a file format introduced by Microsoft in its Windows 8 release to replace its far-limited original VHD file format. The newer VHDX improved on the limitations of its predecessor, VHD, and supports more flexibility. VHDX format offers more storage for dynamic and differential disks, and custom metadata features.

The VHDX file stores the same content as the VHD file, including the boot record, partitions, file systems, normal files, and folders. So you know, a VHDX file represents a virtual machine hosted in a Windows Hyper-V environment – if the file gets corrupted, the associated VM won’t launch. Yes, virtual files are subject to corruption just as local files saved on local physical hard drives.

VHDX File Corruption

There are quite many reasons why a VHDK file could get corrupted – the file can be mistakenly deleted too, by the system user. The truth, whether virtual files or local files, data corruption can occur due to a virus attack on the physical hard drive or there’s a sudden power surge that ends up damaging the hard drive’s logical volumes.

Common Causes of VHDX File Deletion/Corruption

  • Accidental Deletion: This refers to a scenario where the system user mistakenly deletes the VHDX file, maybe during a bulk delete or due to an accident.
  • Virus Attack: If the physical hard drive that stores the VHDX file gets attacked by malware, there are higher chances of the VHDK file getting corrupted and inaccessible.
  • Power Surge: A sudden power surge may cause damage to the logical volumes on a hard drive; thus, corrupting the virtual hard drive file stored on the drive.

Software Issues: Some software programs can corrupt your important files. If your VM stopped launching after installing a new software, consider uninstalling the software as a troubleshooting practice.

How to Recover VHDX Files

You can recover VHDX files lost due to any of the scenarios explained above. While you can use Windows OS free utilities like PowerShell and Check Disk, in some cases, you will require a professional third-party tool.

Part 1. Recover VHD Files with VHDX Data Recovery Tool

Recovering VHDX files using DiskInternals VMFS Recovery is a process that involves several steps. VHDX files are virtual hard disk images used primarily with Microsoft Hyper-V. They can contain critical data, and losing access to such files can be problematic, especially in virtualized environments. Here’s a general guide on how to use DiskInternals VMFS Recovery to recover VHDX files:

  1. Download and Install DiskInternals VMFS Recovery:

    • First, you need to download the DiskInternals VMFS Recovery software.
    • Install the software on a Windows computer that can access the storage where the VHDX files were stored.
  2. Launch the Software:

    • Open DiskInternals VMFS Recovery after installation.
    • The software’s wizard will guide you through the initial steps.
  3. Connect to the Storage Device:

    • Ensure the storage device (like a hard disk, SAN, or NAS) containing the VHDX files is connected to your computer.
    • The software should be able to detect the storage device automatically; if not, you might need to manually locate it through the software interface.
  4. Scan for Lost VHDX Files:

    • Use the scanning feature to search for lost or deleted VHDX files.
    • You can perform a quick scan or a full scan, depending on how deeply you need to search for the files. A full scan takes longer but is more thorough.
  5. Preview and Recover VHDX Files:

    • Once the scan is complete, browse through the found data and locate the VHDX files you want to recover.
    • DiskInternals VMFS Recovery allows you to preview the files before recovery to ensure they are the correct ones and not corrupted.
    • Select the VHDX files you need and choose a safe location to save them. It’s important to save the recovered files to a different disk than the one they were recovered from to avoid data overwriting.
  6. Complete the Recovery Process:

    • After selecting the files and the save location, initiate the recovery process.
    • Wait until the recovery is complete. The duration will depend on the size of the files being recovered.
  7. Verify the Integrity of the Recovered Files:

    • Once recovery is complete, check the integrity of the recovered VHDX files by attempting to mount them in Hyper-V or by browsing their contents.

Part 2. Repair the Corrupted or Unreadable VHDX

To address the issue of repairing a corrupted or unreadable VHDX file, you can follow these steps. Each method varies in complexity and risk, so it’s important to back up any accessible data before proceeding with these repair methods.

1. Run CHKDSK Command to Repair Bad Sectors on VHDX

The CHKDSK command is a Windows utility that can check the file system integrity of a disk and fix logical file system errors, including bad sectors:

  1. Mount the VHDX file in Windows. You can do this through the Disk Management tool or by using the PowerShell command Mount-VHD -Path "C:\path\to\file.vhdx".
  2. Open Command Prompt as Administrator.
  3. Run the command: chkdsk /f /r X: where X: is the drive letter of the mounted VHDX. The /f parameter tells CHKDSK to fix any errors it finds, and /r tells it to locate bad sectors and recover readable information.

2. Format VHDX to NTFS File System

Formatting should be a last resort as it will erase all data stored on the VHDX. If you’ve backed up the data or if data recovery is not a concern:

  1. Mount the VHDX using Disk Management or PowerShell.
  2. Right-click the VHDX drive in Disk Management and select Format.
  3. Choose NTFS as the file system and complete the format.

3. Delete and Create a New VHDX Partition

If formatting does not work, you might need to delete the existing partition and create a new one:

  1. Open Disk Management.
  2. Right-click the partition on the VHDX and select Delete Volume.
  3. Create a new volume by right-clicking the now unallocated space and choosing New Simple Volume. Follow the prompts to initialize and format the partition.

4. Repair Using Windows PowerShell

You can use PowerShell to attempt a repair on the VHDX file:

  1. Open PowerShell as Administrator.
  2. Use the command: Repair-VHD -Path "C:\path\to\file.vhdx".

5. Opt For The VHD Repair Tool

If the above methods do not work, consider using a dedicated VHD/VHDX repair tool. Several third-party tools are available that can scan and repair corrupted VHDX files. Make sure to choose a reliable and well-reviewed tool.

6. Fix with CHKDSK Command

This step repeats the first step and involves using CHKDSK to fix file system errors and bad sectors. It’s an essential first step for diagnosing and fixing basic file system corruption.

By following these steps, you can address most issues related to VHDX file corruption. However, if your VHDX contains critical data, and these methods do not resolve the issue, consulting with professional data recovery services is advisable to avoid further damage.


You can recover or repair VHDX files using different methods and tools. Data loss scenarios cannot be fully avoided, so making regular backups and having a recovery solution handy is your best bet not to lose your important files.

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