[Solved] The Operation Could Not be Completed Because the Volume is Dirty


Summary: Here are the 6 best solutions to overcome the operation could not be completed because the volume is dirty error, and the best data recovery software to recover essential data.

Yesterday, I was about to transfer a few of my files from my hard drive, e.g., C partition to my external hard drive, but I was interrupted with an error message. As soon I pasted those files on my external hard drive, the procedure failed and showed the error message the operation could not be completed because the volume is dirty. I tried to do the same again after deleting the files, but the result was the same.

The Operation Could Not be Completed Because the Volume is Dirty

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If the Windows is showing, error code: 0x80071ac3, the volume is dirty; basically, it Windows is unable to read or write the data on the external hard drives, SD memory cards, or USB drives. Although, the operation could not be completed because the volume is dirty is a very common issue, but it is very problematic and can interrupt your work. So, we have provided a few solutions below and recommend use them one by one.

How to fix the volume is dirty on Windows 10, 8, 7

Solution 1: Inspect the Drive

So, if you are getting the operation could not be completed because the volume is a dirty error, every time you try to copy a file; you must inspect the drive first. You have to execute the procedure via Command Prompt. The steps are straightforward, let’s have a look;

Step1: So, open your computer and make a right-click on the drive that is causing the issue. Go to “Properties”.

Step2: Now, open the “Tools” tab and then click on “Check” or “Check Now”.

Drive Error Checking

Step3: If you are a Windows 10 user, then you will click on “Scan and Repair Drive” but if you are Windows 7 user, you need to check all the options and click “Start”.

Now, you need to wait for the scan to get completed. The progression will be visible, but after that, the drive-in question will get fixed automatically.

Solution 2: Registry Changes

It is possible that Windows is not allowing you to copy files due to bad registry configurations. So, you must try to resolve them in the right order.

But before you do that, you must know that; changes in registry can cause serious issues with your OS; so, make sure that you are following the steps very carefully.

Step1: Open your PC and press “Windows + R” keys, type “Regedit” and hit “enter” to execute and lastly, click “Yes”.

Step2: After the registry opens, you must go to “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE” and then click on “System”.

Step3: After that, go to “CurrentControlSet” and then click on “Control”.

Step4: Now, you have to find “StorageDevicePolicies” and click on it.

Step5: Inside it, you need to open “WriteProtect” and double-click on it.

Step6: After that, you need to change the write-protect value from 1 to a complete 0, click “OK” to make changes.

write protect

After this, just close the Registry Editor and reboot your PC. After your computer starts again, you need to check if you were able to get rid of the issue.

Solution 3: Disable Readyboost

Since Microsoft brought us a disk caching software component called Readyboost, which enables write cache between storage drive and RAM to enhance the computing performance on Windows Vista or later operating system, but USB drive is slower than RAM, then enabled Readyboost feature may lead to the volume is dirty issue. We should try to disable Readyboost to eliminate.

Step1: Connect your external device to the computer and then enter into My computer/This PC.

Step2: Right-click on the external device, select “Properties”.

Step3: Turn to Readyboost tab and tick on Do not use this device, apply the change.


Safely remove the external device and plug it into the USB port to check again.

Solution 4: fix the volume is dirty issue using CMD

Another well-performed solution is using CMD to check the external device with these steps:

Step1: Right-click on the Start button and choose Command Prompt (Admin), for Windows 10 user, you should choose Windows Powershell (Admin).

Step2: Paste this command to the window: chkdsk X: /B

chkdsk X B

Solution 5: Reinstall driver software

The other solution worth a try is to reinstall/update the driver software of the external hard drive, USB flash drive, etc. This is to make sure the driver software may not get out-to-dated and cause the operation could not be completed because the volume is dirty error.

Step1: Connect your USB flash drive or external hard drive to the computer, after that, press Win Logo key + R and then type: devmgmt.msc to open Device Manager Window, after

Step2: Now, look for the device you plugged in and then right-click on it.

Step3: Select Uninstall to let the Windows system to delete the driver software and then right-click on the machine name and choose Scan for hardware changes to reinstall the driver software automatically.

Else, you can also click on Update Driver Software and search the latest one automatically.

Solution 6: Format the Drive

Well, the final option is very depressing, as you will lose all your files, but if anything is not working; you must format the drive. But you can copy the important files before formatting.

Step1: So, you have to open your PC and make a right-click on the hard drive partition and click “Format”.

Step2: You need to click on the “Restore Device Defaults” option and lastly click “OK” to execute.

Format the SD Card

After the hard drive partition is formatted, you will not have to face the error message.

Extra Tip: Recover Data from a Formatted Hard Drive

Unfortunately, you can lose all of your data after formatting your hard drive. Formatting your hard drive will definitely, fix the issue, but it will also erase your files.

But if you are hung up on them and forgot to copy or backup your files; you can recover all those lost files with Bitwar Data Recovery. It is a great program. Effective and comes with an excellent data recovery rate. The operational procedure is pretty simple; we have detailed it below. Let’s have a look;

Step1: First, you need to download and install the latest version of Bitwar Data Recovery on your computer.

Download for PCDownload for Mac

Step2: Now, launch the program and choose the hard drive that you are about to format and click “Next” to proceed.

Select the drive 6.49

Step3: Now, select “Formatted Recovery” in the scan mode and click “next” to proceed. (If this mode can’t work to find the lost data, try with Deep Scan mode next time).

formatted Recovery 6.49

Step4: After that, you must select the file types you need to recover and click “Next” to proceed.

Select All Types

Step5: After the scan is complete, you will get the preview and then click “Recover” to restore the files.

Video Preview


Error code: 0x80071ac3, the operation could not be completed because the volume is dirty will not permit you to copy files as Windows is unable to read or write the files. This is a very typical issue. Mostly occur when copying files to a USB or an external hard drive due to bad sectors or some other reasons. But not to worry, we have detailed a few of the most effective methods to fix the said error.

If all of the solutions couldn’t work to resolve the error, and you can only choose to format the external hard drive, then the vital data stores on the drive will be wiped out together, then don’t forget to use Bitwar Data Recovery to recover those lost files immediately.

Read More

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