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Recovery Console Tutorial - Question

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#1 MarkWR


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  • Local time:06:35 PM

Posted 07 May 2006 - 05:14 AM

[ background
Having just spent several days swapping between Recovery Console and Symantec/PartitionManager in trying to sort out disk problems, I sought out a note on installing the recovery console and found your excellent tutorial.

As it happens, I will not in this instance add a new partition as my current problem is very delicately balanced
a] I don't want "drive" references and "partition" settings to change.
b] since you need a good bootsector on the active partition before the boot.ini file is picked up, the whole thing seems to be of limited use in a one-disk system

I am still struggling with the precise terminology [drive device volume partition] used especially in Microsoft Help and also with the lack of explicit descriptions when it comes to context on key commands [fixmbr fixboot bootcfg map ...]

Just when I think I understand,
I see the phrase for FIXMBR "Repairs the startup partition's master boot code. "
The argument "variable device" is, if I understand correctly something like: a "disk drive" or "volume".
However, I thought there was only one set of master boot code per volume and that finds a partition area (the active/boot one) and loads the code from that partition's bootsector and then executes that.

Shouldn't FIXMBR talk in terms of (BIOS-selected) boot-device and its MBR (or MBsector?) and a description should clarify if the MBR is only changed with respect to its code or if any change is made to the partition table itself. Clearly, any amendment of the partion table that might occur here is a pretty vital element of any description.

Microsoft FIXMBR says "If an invalid or nonstandard partition table signature is detected, you will be prompted whether you want to continue. If you are not having problems accessing your drives, you should not continue. Writing a new master boot record to your system partition could damage your partition tables and cause your partitions to become inaccessible.
...which begs the questions
a] what happens if the existing partition table is 100% valid does it leave it alone and just change the boot code to Msoft standard
b] what happens if SOME of the partition table is OK - does it smash even the good partition entries? [there are no step-by-step options therein]

in all, what is the intent of fixmbr is it to fix the boot code or to fix the partition information or both or (as I suspect) something in-between. There is certainly no "CHECKMBR" command to get a feel for what FIXMBR might want to do.

Please confirm/refute that "startup partition's master boot code. " is misleading for FIXMBR
and, if appropriate, schedule a re-wording of the tutorial.

Also, any clarification on the logic of FIXMBR would be most welcome.
Thanks, Mark

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