MBR Backup/Repair Utilities

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by TheKid7, Dec 2, 2010.

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  1. TheKid7

    TheKid7 Registered Member

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    What are your favorite MBR Backup/Repair Utilities?

    What is your MBR backup routine?

    The Partitions Wizard Bootable CD web page says that it can repair the MBR without destroying the disk partition table.

    Has anyone used Partition Wizard for repairing a MBR? Currently, I do not have a need of making any MBR repairs. However, I would like to know a simple and easy way to repair a MBR if the need ever arises.

    Thanks in Advance.
     
  2. pajenn

    pajenn Registered Member

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    I use MbrFix. It's a free command line tool available for both 32- and 64-bit systems. I have it set to make a backup of the mbr once a week during Windows start-up, plus I use it manually before installing any program that might modify the mbr. If there's a problem I would boot to BartPE or WinPE (Windows pre-install environment) to restore one of the mbr backups over the corrupted mbr. That means you need to have a repair disk prepared and your mbr backups should be available in multiple places (since a corrupted mbr may mean an unreadable disk).

    For Windows 7, I've used the Window 7 System Recovery Disk successfully to sort out some boot/mbr problems I had after removing the 100 MB boot partition found on some Windows 7 systems. There's a free disk (iso) download available for both 32- and 64-bit systems and it could also be used as a basis for your WinPE disk.

    Other tools:

    DiskGenius Pro is mainly a disk imaging tool, but it has various functions to backup and restore or rebuild mbrs and can also create a bootable flash disk for you, but it's not free and didn't work for me in the above mentioned Window 7 case - however, I have been able to browse and recovery files from corrupted/unbootable partitions using it.

    Another tool you could try is MBR Backup 2.0 which has been discussed in this forum. It's similar to MbrFix in functionality but with gui (i.e. no need for command line stuff). I'm hesitant to recommend it though because I had some problems using it for mbr restores (maybe my bad, maybe not...)
     
  3. andylau

    andylau Registered Member

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    MBRFix and MBRWizard.:D
     
  4. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    TheKid7,

    I know you use TeraByte images for backup. Each image contains a backup of the MBR. Actually it contains a backup of the First Track (LBA-0 to LBA-62).

    Have you tried TeraByte's MBRWork? It can do some interesting things.
     
  5. aladdin

    aladdin Registered Member

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    MBRWizard is no longer a freeware. I bought it last night for $4.99
     
  6. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    Removed Off Topic post. Free Boot CD mentioned contains paid commercial software.
     
  7. andylau

    andylau Registered Member

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    The command line (CLI) version is free
     
  8. moontan

    moontan Registered Member

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    i suspected as much.
    the other day i installed XP in dual boot to play a game.
    i uninstalled XP because the game didnt work but i still had the option to boot from XP at boot time.

    a restored image from Windows 7 own utility fixed it.
     
  9. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Do you mean you still had the Microsoft dual boot menu?

    Did you restore the old Win7 OS partition?

    Thanks for clearing this in my mind.
     
  10. Franklin

    Franklin Registered Member

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    There's a newish MBR Ransom trojan around that manipulates the mbr where a test was done using MBRguard from Blueridge
    KernelMode
     
  11. moontan

    moontan Registered Member

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    yes for you first question.


    yes for #2 as well.
    i use Windows 7 for imaging and restoring.
    there's a box you can check while in the restore process asking if you want to use the original partitioning.
     
  12. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    moontan,

    Thanks. The Microsoft Boot Manager doesn't put any special code in the MBR so you could have got by without restoring the MBR. As most people don't have a special MBR they needn't be concerned about backing up the MBR. If ever they need new boot code it is easily created. Even an old Win98 boot floppy can do that. And it works for a Win7 OS too.
     
  13. Franklin

    Franklin Registered Member

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    fdisk /mbr works on Win7 from a 98 floppy. o_O
     
  14. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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  15. Franklin

    Franklin Registered Member

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    Thanks for the info Brian K, good to know. :)
     
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