Many other sites suggest that your hard disk crashed when you get the error “A disk read error occurred” – this is plain and simple wrong and dangerous advice, here’s what really happens

IMPORTANT: This error most likely occurs when you do not install AHCI drivers and try to install Windows 8 on a SSD that requires AHCI drivers. In that case the solution is to install AHCI drivers as explained in one of our guides.

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Check BIOS settings – upgrade BIOS too

1. Step If you get the “a disk read error occurred” immediately after installing Windows 8 it is very unlikely that your disk actually crashed, instead it’s a software bug. Go into your BIOS and see if the drive is still recognized, if it is then there’s a good chance you can easily access your drive again

2. Step Should it show up, unplug all external devices and reboot

3. Step Still no dice? Try to boot from Windows 8 DVD and repair your installation – in most cases you simply have to boot from DVD then select “Repair PC” / “Continue with Windows 7” => Windows 8 will automatically recognize that Windows 8 does not work for you and restore Windows 7 again

During Windows 8 Pro Install Try This

1. Step When you are asked to download updates, select No Thanks

2. Step When you are asked what files you want to keep “Choose what to keep”, select the option “Windows settings, personal files, and apps”

3. Step Continue the install and see if it fixes the problems

If you need a new license anyway, you can try to download the Windows 8 Upgrade Assistent from Microsoft – this is a separate file and might help you to correctly install Windows 8 (it is recommended you follow the tips above first)