How to Backup MBR in Windows 7

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When your computer first boots up, your hard drive initializes by accessing its master boot record or MBR. The MBR contains information on the size and specifications of your hard drive's partitions. If your MBR becomes corrupted, then your computer will not be able to identify your hard drive, and it will not be possible to access any information on the drive or initiate your operating system. To avoid data loss, you can create a backup of your MBR. Although Windows 7 does not include native MBR backup capability, you can complete this task using MBRtool, a free utility.

Things You'll Need

  • Blank CD-R disc
  • Navigate your web browser to DIY DataRecovery's MBRtool download page. MBRtool is a freeware utility that can back up and restore your computer's MBR.

  • Click the blue download icon next to MBRtool on the download page. Save the MBRtool installation file to your hard drive.

  • Run the installation file to start the MBRtool setup wizard. Click "Next" to continue.

  • Read the License Agreement and click the radio button next to "I accept the agreement." Click "Next," as it appears, four times. Click "Install" to continue.

  • Insert a blank, writable CD into your computer's CD-R drive.

  • Click the radio button next to "Create Boot CD/DVD." Click "Go." MBRtool will create a bootable CD that contains the MBRtool utility.

  • Restart your computer and boot to the CD. Your computer will boot to a DOS command prompt.

  • Type "MBRtool" at the command prompt, and press "Enter." The program will start up and display the main MBRtool menu.

  • Type "2" and press "Enter" at the main MBRtool program menu to backup your MBR to a file. Type the name of the file to which you would like to save the computer's MBR and press "Enter." MBRtool will backup your MBR to the specified file.

Tips & Warnings

  • If your MBR becomes corrupted, you can boot to the CD. Use the MBRtool utility to repair or restore the MBR.

References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images
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