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Windows 7: Hard Drive with MBR Failed; how do I get main installation working?

08 Jan 2013   #1

Windows 7 64-bit
 
 
Hard Drive with MBR Failed; how do I get main installation working?

My former hard drive with my MBR on it failed. This hard drive was/is 750GB and when I purchased my 'main' 2TB hard drive I made another fresh install of Windows. In other words, I had two installations of Windows on two separate hard drives. However, the MBR is located on the now-failed 750GB hard drive, and so my 2TB install of Windows won't work. I have tried (and failed) at repairing or otherwise installing a new MBR on the 2TB hard drive. I am at a loss at what to do. Perhaps I am missing something big or am making a small oversight, I really don't know. Help appreciated!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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08 Jan 2013   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

If there was no MBR on the 2tb HDD drive, Windows would not install.

For old 750gb HDD drive
Check the hard drive with the manufacturer's diagnostic tools.
Hard Drive Diagnostics Tools and Utilities (Storage) - TACKtech Corp.
Hard Drive Diagnostic Procedure
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jan 2013   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bits 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

  1. detach faulty disk from system
  2. Perform a startup repair
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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08 Jan 2013   #4
Microsoft MVP

 

Startup Repair will not work to write the System boot files to the remaining Windows 7 partition unless you mark it Active first:

First Mark Partition Active, then run Startup Repair - Run up to 3 Separate Times until Windows 7 starts and holds the System Active flags showing the boot files are onboard.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Jan 2013   #5

Windows 7 64-bit
 
 

Thank you so much for all your help. I tried everything you guys told me, and when it came down to it gregrocker's method got my system up and running again. Marking the partition as active was the main hurdle I was having problems with. Thanks!!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Jan 2013   #6

Windows 7 Professional x64 Linux Mint 16
 
 

He`s the man
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Jan 2013   #7

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bits 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by MasterofTofu View Post
Thank you so much for all your help. I tried everything you guys told me, and when it came down to it gregrocker's method got my system up and running again. Marking the partition as active was the main hurdle I was having problems with. Thanks!!
Normally if no partition is marked ACTIVE, startup repair marks the partition with file bootmgr on it as ACTIVE. Don't know what happens when 2 partitions have that file or no partitions have that file.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Jan 2013   #8
Microsoft MVP

 

From what I've seen if the Active flag is not on the partition, Startup Repair will not work until you mark the intended boot partition Active showing it where you want the boot files repaired or written.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Jan 2013   #9

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bits 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

I tested it myself a few weeks ago (see #7)

partition 1: primary with OS. Deleted bootmgr (actually renamed it). Renamed \boot\bcd
partition 2: empty primary ntfs partition. Only file bootmgr on it.

No partition active. Rebooted from Windows 7 system repair disk (it didn't find Windows 7 instance). Then ran startup repair. It did make partition 2 ACTIVE and places bcd file on it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Jan 2013   #10
Microsoft MVP

 

Interesting.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Hard Drive with MBR Failed; how do I get main installation working?




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