How to repair Windows file corruption with SFC command

The SFC (System File Checker) command is a built-in utility in Windows that allows you to scan for and repair missing or corrupted system files.

SFC (System File Checker) command is available in most versions of Windows. It is a built-in utility that is designed to scan for and repair missing or corrupted system files. It can help resolve various issues related to system stability and functionality.

windows 11 on a tablet
windows 11 on a tablet

Here’s how to use the SFC command

  1. Open Command Prompt as an administrator:

Press the Windows key, type “Command Prompt,” right-click on “Command Prompt” in the search results, and select “Run as administrator.”

  1. Run the SFC command:

In the Command Prompt window, type sfc /scannow and press Enter.

The command will scan all protected system files and replace any corrupted files with a cached copy located in a compressed folder at %WinDir%\System32\dllcache. The %WinDir% placeholder represents the Windows operating system folder (e.g., C:\Windows).

  1. Wait for the scan to complete:

The scan may take some time to finish. Do not close the Command Prompt window until the verification is 100% complete.

  1. After the scan is complete, you will see one of the following messages:
    • “Windows Resource Protection did not find any integrity violations”: This means that no missing or corrupted system files were found.
    • “Windows Resource Protection could not perform the requested operation”: In this case, you can try running the SFC scan in safe mode and ensure that the PendingDeletes and PendingRenames folders exist under %WinDir%\WinSxS\Temp.

Availability across Windows Versions

Windows 11, Windows 10, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1: 

The SFC command is available and can be run from the Command Prompt or Windows PowerShell with administrator privileges

Windows 7 and earlier

The SFC command is also available in these versions of Windows, but the DISM (Deployment Image Servicing and Management) command is not available.

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