T’nT #2: Backup and Recovery of Master Boot Record

TNTSo here’s another tipp on a bit advanced level but still useful for everyone. Kindly provided by Melli. 🙂

Short for Master Boot Record, MBR is also sometimes referred to as the master boot block, master partition boot sector, and sector 0. The MBR is the first sector of the computer hard drive that tells the computer how to load the operating system, how the hard drive is partitioned, and how to load the operating system.
So if the MBR is ever broken, you won’t be able to boot anymore. To prevent that, you can build a backup.

  1. You need some kind of Linux Terminal with root access, e.g. Open Konsole which is included within openSuSE 13.1 – KDE
  2. Type the following command:
    sudo dd if=/dev/sdX of=/home/USER/mbr.bin bs=512 count=1Where sudo means: execute command as user root
    Where /dev/sdX means: the device node of your boot harddisk e.g. /dev/sda
    Where USER means: the username you used to login e.g. terri → /home/terri/
    Where bs=512 means: the size of one block is 512 bytes
    Where count=1 means: copy one block


How to restore a backup of your Master Boot Record including the Partition Table:

  1. You need some kind of Linux Terminal with root access
    Type the following command:
    sudo dd if=/home/USER/mbr.bin of=/dev/sdX bs=512 count=1Means: you simply swap the parameters if= and of= from the above backup command

Was that article helpful? Do you have any other ideas how to do this? Feel free to share within the comment box! 🙂

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