write mbr and table of partition in a file

Discussion in 'Acronis Disk Director Suite' started by mantra, Sep 15, 2007.

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  1. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    Hi
    i have disk director suite
    i did make the iso boot cd

    i tried to backup my mbr & table of partitions ,and save in a file

    well i boot with the cd, i click on the hd -> edit

    on the menu save to file , i can't save , the save button is gray

    what's the problem?
    i gave a look at the faqs ,but did not find an answer


    help me
     
  2. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    mantra:

    The easiest way to do this is to do it while running the Windows version of Disk Director. Do what you described in your post, and while viewing the "Edit" window, "View as Hex", use your mouse cursor to highlight the first 512 bytes in Sector 0 (bytes 00h to 1Fh). Then choose "Edit", "Write to file..."

    The Write to file dialog box should be displaying an Offset of 0 and a size of 512 bytes. This will give you the first sector on the disk which includes the MBR and Partition Table. Click on the "Browse" button, find a location to save to, give the file a name and click "Save".

    If you have to do this by booting from the CD, then Disk Director will require a location to write to that is in a Windows/DOS file format, like NTFS or FAT. If you don't have any NTFS or FAT partitions on the disk then try plugging in a USB flash drive or connecting your PC to a wired network and saving to one of those locations.

    If you are seeing a grayed-out "Write to file..." button then there are probably no NTFS or FAT partitions to write to on your disk.
     
  3. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    thanks mark! :thumb:

    in these few byte is there a mbr and partition tableo_O
    i'm a novice
    mrb to make a hd bootable, right?
     
  4. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    Mantra:

    Yep; the Master boot record on a Windows XP computer is 380 bytes long. The partition table is 64 bytes long. These and a few other goodies all fit in the first 512 byte sector.

    More than you ever wanted to know about the first sector on a hard disk is in this article. Scroll about half-way down the page (beneath figure 2) to see a pictorial illustration of sector 0.
     
  5. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    thanks k0lo

    so after a disaster or partition deleted , is enough to restore these byte?
     
  6. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    As long as you have not made any changes to the partition table (creating a new partition, resizing, or moving a partition) then it is OK to restore your saved first sector containing the MBR and your previous partition table.

    Here is an example of a situation that might cause problems. Let's say you had two partitions of equal size and that you saved a copy of the first sector containing the partition table that reflects this layout.

    Later you resize, making the first partition smaller and enlarging the second partition to the left. If, after doing that, you restore the saved copy of the first sector containing the old partition table then it will contain incorrect information about the location of the partitions. The first partition will work OK but the second one won't because the partition table will point to the wrong location on the disk.

    So exercise care when doing this...
     
  7. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    thanks Mark very clear & very kind!
    last question
    if i have damage in the MFT
    what can i use to repair it ? outside chkdsk?
     
  8. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    I was spectacularly unsuccessful in repairing a disk with a damaged MFT once, but here are some places to start looking:

    http://www.google.com/search?q=repair MFT

    If you have Acronis True Image it would be wise to first back up the entire disk before attempting any repairs. Some of the repair tools (like chkdsk) can create additional damage under certain conditions. If you have a backup then you might be able to try a few things to see if they work without risking your data.
     
  9. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    thanks

    but if the mft of my c: will be damage , would it ruin the other partitions or other hd?
     
  10. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    No, only the partition with the damaged MFT will be affected.
     
  11. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    so i have a hd with 3 partition c: d: e:
    if the mft of c: will go in hell , the other D: and E: in the same hd will be safe?

    had u an experience of mft damage?
     
  12. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    Each partition has its own MFT, just as each partition has its own file format (FAT32, NTFS, Ext3, etc.). A corrupt MFT in one partition will have no effect on any other partitions.

    A corrupt partition table (in the MBR) will affect one or more partitions depending on the situation.

    I have had the MFT get corrupted on a computer years ago. I still have the image of the drive, but haven't had the time to browse through 120MB (yes, it was that long ago, a 120MB drive) of raw data to find the files that I would like to recover. In that case, the controller went bad (during a backup) and destroyed the MFT. When it was "repaired", the files were all scrambled. Parts of database files were mixed with parts of Word files, for example. That data was all there, but the links were all screwed up. Not a pretty situation. I ended up staying up all night and redoing a day's work to get my database files back where they were before the disaster.
     
  13. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    mantra:

    Yes, I too had a damaged MFT on my Windows (C) partition. In my case it was caused by a software error from a third-party disk defragmentation tool that had a small "bug" in the code. It scrambled up the MFT on the disk and my efforts to repair it with several tools were unsuccessful.

    Fortunately, MFT corruption is relatively rare with the NTFS file system. If you are unlucky enough to have it happen to you then it can result in complete loss of your data. Having a backup is sometimes the only way to recover.
     
  14. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    Mark i had the same experience with a defrag
    which defrag did u use?
    me ultimate defrag!:thumbd:
     
  15. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    It was one of the "Big Guys" in the disk defragmentation world. They were super helpful and fixed the bug IMMEDIATELY, issuing an update the next day, so I'm reluctant to name names.
     
  16. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    well
    i can ask only 1 question
    how can i save only the mbr? and not the partition table?
     
  17. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    Here are a couple of ways:

    1. The easy way - Use Acronis TrueImage. Any partition image will save a copy of MBR/Track 0 along with the image. Once saved, simply restore MBR/Track 0 to replace only the MBR code without affecting the partition table.

    2. The hard way - Using Disk Director's sector editor, save a copy of bytes 0000h through 017Fh (from absolute sector 0) to a file. If you ever need to restore just the MBR code, copy just those bytes from your saved file to sector 0.

    Take a look at the picture of sector 0 in this article to see what's going on. Scroll down to the picture of sector 0, located right below Figure 2. The bytes shaded in green are the MBR code, and those shaded violet are the MBR error messages. Those are the ones that you want to replace (green and violet). The bytes shaded in the rose color (from 01BEh through 01FDh) are the partition table.

    You can learn a lot by experimenting with Disk Director's sector editor, but it also has the capability of rendering the disk unreadable if you edit the wrong bytes. The advice in the manual is good -- do your experimenting on a spare hard drive that you don't mind accidentally messing up.
     
  18. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    thanks u are very very kind
    but is there a freesoftware that let me do it?
    save only the mbr
    i use true image 9 and disk director 10
     
  19. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

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    You can use dd in Linux.
     
  20. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    i don't use linux
    i mean a program to put in a boot floppy
     
  21. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    You should be able to save the MBR directly to a floppy disk from DD's Disk Editor. Just select the MBR section (as in K0lo's instructions) and save it to the floppy. (I wouldn't trust a floppy with anything, though.)
     
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