Fsutil: dirty

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

Fsutil: dirty

Queries to see whether a volume's dirty bit is set. Sets a volume's dirty bit. When a volume's dirty bit is set, autochk automatically checks the volume for errors the next time the computer is restarted.


fsutil dirty {query | set} VolumePathname

  • query
    Queries the dirty bit.
  • set
    Sets a volume's dirty bit.
  • VolumePathname
    Specifies the drive letter (followed by a colon).
  • If a volume's dirty bit is set, this indicates that the file system may be in an inconsistent state. The dirty bit can be set because the volume is online and has outstanding changes, because changes were made to the volume and the computer shutdown before the changes were committed to disk, or because corruption was detected on the volume. If the dirty bit is set when the computer restarts, chkdsk runs to verify the consistency of the volume.

    Every time you start a computer running one of the operating systems in Windows XP or the Windows Server 2003 family, Autochk.exe is called by the Kernel to scan all volumes to check if the volume dirty bit is set. If the dirty bit is set, autochk performs an immediate chkdsk /f on that volume. Chkdsk /f verifies file system integrity and attempts to fix any problems with the volume.


To query the dirty bit on drive C, type:

fsutil dirty query C:

Sample output:

Volume C: is dirty


Volume C: is not dirty

To set the dirty bit on drive C, type:

fsutil dirty set C:

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See Also


Command-line reference A-Z
Command shell overview