How to repair a corrupt DCIM

Written by adrian grahams Google
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How to repair a corrupt DCIM
A corrput DCIM folder can stop you from viewing photos and videos. (Sean Gallup/Getty Images News/Getty Images)

The photos and video clips you capture with your digital camera, video camera and some mobile phones usually save to the Digital Camera Images (DCIM) folder on the device's removable SD storage card. If you can't access your photos and video clips from the SD card, the DCIM folder may be corrupt. Fortunately, computers running the Windows operating system include a utility that can repair corrupt files and folders. Slot the SD card with the corrupt DCIM folder into the computer's card reader slot or, if it doesn't have an integrated card reader, you can use a standalone card reader device connected to a spare USB port. After inserting the card, use the Windows check disk utility to fix the problem.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Remove the SD card with the corrupt DCIM folder from the camera or phone. In most cases, you will need to push the SD card gently to release it from the slot. Insert the SD card into the computer's card reader slot or the slot in a separate card reader device connected to the computer with a USB cable.

  2. 2

    Tap or click the "File Explorer" icon on the computer's desktop taskbar, and then select "Computer" in the left menu of the open Computer window. The SD card displays as a storage drive in the "Devices With Removable Storage" section of the window.

  3. 3

    Write down or memorise the SD card's drive letter, such as "F:" or "G:", as displayed in the window. Point to the lower left corner of the screen with your mouse, or swipe to the left corner of the screen on a touchscreen device and open the Windows Start screen.

  4. 4

    Point or swipe to the top right corner of the Start screen, and then select the "Search" icon. Type "cmd" in the "Search" input field. Select the "Apps" option under the Search field.

  5. 5

    Click or tap "Command Prompt" in the search results on the left side of the screen to launch the Command Prompt tool in a new window. Type "chkdsk x: /f" (without quotes) but replace the "x" letter with the SD card's actual drive letter, for example, type "chkdsk f: /f" if the drive letter is "F:".

  6. 6

    Press the "Y" key on your computer keyboard to confirm that you want to repair this drive. If prompted, restart your PC to launch the repair utility. Wait for the tool to detect and repair errors in the DCIM folder. This process can take from a few minutes to more than an hour, depending on the number of files and extent of the problem.

Tips and warnings

  • The information in this article applies to computers running the Microsoft Windows 8 operating system. It may differ significantly or slightly with other versions of Windows.

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