that Error Checking cannot begin until you restart the computer? That gives you the option to restart now, or continue working on the computer until such time you are ready to reboot it.
Error Checking only works on a reboot as there has to be 'no other' software running at all. Once started, you cannot stop it.
Is it important? Yes and no.
Scan Disk will attempt to repair bad sectors. If it cannot repair them then it marks them to be left unused. File recovery is a bit of a misnomer in error checking. Whilst it will recover files and save them as .chk fies, (I believe), you are going to be hard pressed to extract anything useful from those files unless the originals were plain text. The more bad sectors it finds, the worse the news is for the hard drive. That's why we employ a regular backup system. However all disks will have some bad sectors.
Some users error check and defragment regularly, weekly or even more, but the general view seems to be that this is overkill. Once a month or even less seems ok. I error checked my own a month ago, the first time for a year.
You need to set plenty of time aside for error checking to complete. Depending on the size of the hard disk this can be many hours.
When in my computer if you right click on your local hard drive and seclect tools you will see error-checking. If you start this there is a cancel but it becomes grayed out and I see no way to stop the checking if I want to even using the red x in the upper right corner. I am wanting to know how to cancel out because if I select scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors this can take a long time and even longer if I do it in safe mode. I may run out of time and want to stop it from running. Also how important is it to do the bad sector thing, is it really needed for prevention or should I only do this if having a problem? I have searched using google but can not find how to cancel out of this. Thanks slybo