The Chkntfs command-line utility is designed to view the status of specific volumes and to disable the automatic running of Chkdsk on those volumes after Windows restarts from an improper shutdown. You can also use Chkntfs to prevent Chkdsk from running if the chkdsk /f command was used to schedule Chkdsk to be run on an active volume on the next system restart and to see whether the dirty bit is set.
The utility is run from a command prompt and has the following syntax and command-line options.
chkntfs [/t[:time]] [/x] [/c] volume: [...]
Table 3: Chkntfs Command-Line Switches (Options)
Excludes a drive from the default startup-time check. Excluded drives are not accumulated between command invocations.
Displays the file system type, the status of the file system dirty bit, and whether Chkdsk is scheduled to run against the volume during the startup process.
Schedules a volume to be checked during the startup process.
Restores the computer to the default behavior and removes registry settings that were made by chkdsk /f or chkntfs /x. This means that all drives are checked during the startup process and that Chkdsk is run against those that are found to be dirty.
Changes the Autochk time-out value to the specified length of time in seconds. If the time is not specified, displays the current settings. Although you can set the countdown time to 0, doing so prevents you from canceling a potentially time-consuming automatic file check.
Note To use Chkntfs, you must be logged on with an account that is a member of the local Administrators group.
If no command-line switches are specified, Chkntfs displays the current status of the dirty or scheduled-to-be-checked volumes during the next start-up process.
Table 4: Chkntfs Examples
chkntfs /x c:
Disables Chkdsk from running on drive C.
chkntfs /x d: e:
Disables Chkdsk from running on drives D and E.
The chkntfs /x commands are not cumulative. The command overwrites any previous drive exclusions that have been established. In the example chkntfs /x d: e:, Chkntfs disables Chkdsk from running only on drives D and E; drive C is still checked for the dirty bit.
The Chkntfs utility also modifies the BootExecute value in the system registry. The BootExecute entry is located in the following registry key:
The chkdsk /f schedules Autochk to run during the next start-up process by setting a key in the registry. The chkntfs /x command disables the checking for this registry key. Autochk does not run during the start-up process on volumes that are excluded from dirty-bit checking by Chkntfs.
To run chkdsk /f on a drive that has been excluded by the Chkntfs utility, run chkntfs /d to return the system to its normal state, or edit the BootExecute value in the registry and remove the applicable drive letter from the /k command-line switch.
Chkntfs treats all drives as local to the node. This includes server clusters that use a shared drive array.
Additional values that can be found in the BootExecute entry are shown in Table 5.
Table 5: BootExecute Entries
Schedules an unconditional Chkdsk against the volume.
Schedules an unconditional Chkdsk against a volume mount point.
Excludes Chkdsk from running against the volume.
Tells Autochk to look only at the dirty bit on the volume, and if it is set, to run Chkdsk.