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Windows 7: Could not repair MBR by the standard method

18 Mar 2016   #1
ineuw

Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 32-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 
Could not repair MBR by the standard method

This post is after restoring the system from a mirror backup. On booting Windows 7, it reported that it cannot read from the disk. So, using the Windows install disk to repair, I tried chkdsk /f and it reported a corrupt MBR.

So, following the excellent instructions from this forum to restore the MBR using diskpart, and then bootsect.exe, followed by bootrec.exe and could not repair the MBR.

To be clear, I am well prepared but want to know why I couldn't repair the MBR, for future reference. I have both the original Win 7/32 bit install disk, as well as the Win 7/32 bit repair disk, as well as two system mirrors on another hard disk, and used one to restore Windows 7, but I am concerned.

This is a 32bit Windows 7 system installed on a new 1 TB Seagate Barracuda, using AHCI and the Sata is II. Also, the JMicron disk controller on the MB is the latest software/firmware version.

What could cause this, and are my options?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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18 Mar 2016   #2
remm

Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit
 
 

Hey ineuw.... don't know what's wrong but I have had good success with Paragon's MBR repair tool, included in their free Rescue Kit here. You can burn the tool to a USB, boot off that, then use the MBR fix. Good luck.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2016   #3
ineuw

Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 32-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Many thanks for the link. I am in the process of downloading it now. Also, used Xubuntu Live CD and GParted to look at my Windows install, and it seems that I created two overlapping partitions, (not in use as yet). Corrected it, but will use the software you recommended if I did OK.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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19 Mar 2016   #4
remm

Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit
 
 

Good deal.... might also have it check the partition properties... just to be sure.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2016   #5
torchwood

W7 home premium 32bit/W7HP 64bit/w10 tp insider ring
 
 

NO external devices should be connected when reinstalling a system

Roy
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2016   #6
ineuw

Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 32-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

torchwood, Can you please clarify "NO external devices should be connected when reinstalling a system." Either the Paragon USB, or the Windows Repair USB is plugged in but I do not reinstall a fresh, I restore a Microsoft system mirror.

remm, I have used all of Paragon's tools relating to Boot, MBR, (it is an ASUS 32bit BIOS motherboard) etc. and it's excellent. It always fixes the problem, but the problem keeps coming back on subsequent boots. Thanks!!!

P.S: Much thanks to you both for helping.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2016   #7
derekimo

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ineuw View Post
torchwood, Can you please clarify "NO external devices should be connected when reinstalling a system." Either the Paragon USB, or the Windows Repair USB is plugged in but I do not reinstall a fresh, I restore a Microsoft system mirror.
Just to keep boot files or system files from being mistakenly written to external HDD's, a pretty common mistake we see here.

It's an ounce of prevention.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2016   #8
remm

Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ineuw View Post
This post is after restoring the system from a mirror backup.[...] This is a 32bit Windows 7 system installed on a new 1 TB Seagate Barracuda [...]
In reading your OP closer, if I understand correctly, you restored a Windows mirror (backup) to new hardware... that is, to a new 1TB hard drive. Windows will not boot when restored to new hardware due to piracy cr@p. Restoring to new hardware is called migration.

Paragon also makes a migration tool called Adaptive Restore, but it's included in pay-for products like the Paragon HD Mgr Suite.

In case you were to go this route, or for general information for other readers, once installed, can build WinPE rescue media from within the program. Would then boot to the rescue media and click the "P2P Adjust" tile. Choose the automatic option on the next screen. It will find the installed OS and inject the proper drivers.

Next, the C partition must be set as Active. So from the main Paragon screen, would click on the "Boot Repair" tile. The next screen features 6 options. Would click the first one, "Windows Installations To Correct" and manually set the C drive as Active by using the little box/chevron options. When it finishes this task it will spit you back out to the main screen.

Choose the Boot Repair tile again and click the option about 3 down (don't know the exact wording) but it is to "automatically repair any MBR or boot.ini records for the drive". When this task is done you can close Paragon and the machine should boot from the hard drive without fail.

Sorry I did not read the OP close enough the first time to realize you were migrating to new hardware. You might dbl check that your C drive is set as active, but other than that, you might need a migration tool like the above.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Mar 2016   #9
ineuw

Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 32-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

After days of searching for an answer, I found the problem, corrected it and now everything is working as it should. The basic problem was trying to slowly upgrade the system to be ready for a new 64bit processor, motherboard, memory, and a new PSU. Three months ago, I bought a 120 GB Patriot Torqx SSD to separate the boot drive from the data and learned about AHCI, until then, I was using IDE. Followed instructions to modify the Windows registry for AHCI (an idea that doesn't work), and set the BIOS to AHCI. Last week, the SSD died, so I moved the boot to the new drive but that didn't help until I reset the BIOS to IDE. Thanks for all the kind help from all.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Mar 2016   #10
remm

Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit
 
 

Glad you figured it out and thanks for explaining. You can mark the problem as solved.

(Your solution actually baffled me, as AHCI is for HD SATA controllers and plug'n'play ports, and IDE mode in BIOS is used for OSs that don't have built-in SATA controllers, like XP and prior [and so don't recognize AHCI in the BIOS and BIOS has to run in IDE]. Seems odd if your new drive is SATA and you are using W7 that AHCI would not work? Something seems wrong... but 'if it ain't broke...' )
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Could not repair MBR by the standard method




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