How to fix "A disk read error occurred. Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart" issue on Windows?

Issue: I bought a new computer, and after a week of usage, I couldn‘t load it. Right after the logo of the processor shows up, the screen goes black and “A disk read error occurred. Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart” shows up. A couple of times restarting the device worked, but now the message won’t go away, and I can’t load the device all. Any suggestions would be highly appreciated.

Solved Answer

A disk read error occurred. Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart” error might appear regardless of whether your device is brand new or older, whether you are still running Windows XP or Windows 10 with Creators Update installed. Let us assure that your data is still there unless you have witnessed the direct physical damage inflicted on the hard disk.

Indeed, the issue might become a highly frustrating issue if left untackled. Since it is quite frequent, there are already solutions for. It would be practical to determine the cause to solve the issue faster.

The very cause may lie not in the operating system itself but in the hardware. You might want to check your RAM slots, SATA and IDE cables. Physical damage may trigger the error message. Here, you will find a couple of methods to solve the problem. The screenshot of "A disk read error occurred. Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart" error

Option 1. Load BIOS default settings

Step 1. This method often works unless there is a damaged element on the motherboard.

  1. In order to load the setup, tap F2 or F8 right after you press the power button, and the computer screen displays the image of your video card manufacturer or processor. The screen will also indicate which keys open which options.
  2. Once you are in the setup, navigate with arrow keys to the Exit section.
  3. There you will see Load BIOS defaults. Move down with the arrow key and press Enter. A message will appear asking to click Y or N to make changes. Click Y key on the keyboard.
  4. In order for the changes to take effect, move up to the option Exit saving changes.
  5. Repeat the same action with the Y key.
  6. Click Ctrl+Alt+Del to reboot the computer or do it manually by holding the power button.

Step 2. Choose Load Custom Defaults

Repeat the same steps but instead of choosing Load BIOS defaults, opt for Load Custom Defaults. Apply changes by opting for Exit saving changes.

Option 2. Check if the computer detects the hard disk

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Once you load the settings by tapping F2 or F8, you may check the Main or Boot settings to see if the name of the hard drive is displayed. In short, check if any numbers and characters are displayed under the Hard drive headline.

Then, move to the Exit section and press Enter after choosing Exit Saving Changes. Surprisingly, this simple trick might solve the problem.

Option 3. Check SATA, IDE cables, and RAM slots

It is often the case that “A disk read error occurred. Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart” issue appears as a result of damaged cables in the hardware. If you have never opened the computer cover and might be frightened to get lost in the myriad of microchips, simply take a look at the pictures on the Web. World Wide Web members did a great job placing photos with the instructions.

Re-plug the cables to other slots. Faulty hardware slots is a common issue. Fortunately, other ports should work. You may change RAM ports as well to see if it solves the problem.

Though this error is purely internal, it would be a mistake to let your guard down. The cases of tech support scams reveal how crafty cyber crooks may be to find persuasive deceptions. Monitor the cyber protection of the device with Fortect.

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About the author
Julie Splinters - Computer optimization specialist

When it comes to computer optimization, Julie Splinters is the expert. Whether it is a slow smartphone, Windows, Mac or Linux operating system, she will find a solution within minutes.

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