How to restore MBR

#1
Hello,

I was using EasyBCD (latest version) to dual boot between an installation of Vista (32-bit) and Win7 (64) but accidentally overwrote the MBR to the wrong partition - a partition of an IDE drive that had a second (64-bit) installation of Vista on it. Is there a way to use EasyBCD to restore that latter partition to the state it was in before I overwrote its MBR. I tried unsuccessfully to make the disk bootable using the repair facility on the Vista disk but for some reason it failed to "see" the installation and I didn't know how to "load drivers." Thank you in advance for any replies.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#2
What exactly did you do ?
The MBR on a Vista or W7 HDD is the same, so no problem there.
Why were you touching the MBR ?
making a dual boot only needs "add new entry", and as the name suggests, puts another entry into the BCD without going anywhere near the MBR.
The "write MBR button" is in the bootloader setup and is only needed if XP (or Linux) has stolen control with or without your intent and you wish to put the Vista/7 boot process back in charge (Install Vista/7 bootloader button), or if you are an XP user who has experimented with Vista or W7 and decided to abandon them and revert to an XP single-boot (install XP bootloader button).
It should never be used on a working Vista/7 configuration unless you are not intending to use them ever again.
The Vista DVD is confused by IDE/SATA mix (and sometimes even by multiple SATAs), so if you want to do a standard "startup repair", disconnect the other HDD(s) while you do the repair.
 
#3
Thanks for the prompt reply.
What exactly did you do ?
Well, I was in Win7 of a Vista/Win7 dual boot on two partitions on one of the three SATA drives. I got there via BIOS and was trying to get Vista to show up in that iboot thingy in the systray. It was only showing Win7 which was no advantage. Anyway, nothing I did seemed to work so for some strange reason I thought about writing the configuration to the MBR, but I accidentally chose the partition for the 80gb IDE drive. Now of course that drive won't boot when I try to go into it via BIOS and I would like to get it back.

if you want to do a standard "startup repair", disconnect the other HDD(s) while you do the repair.

That was what I tried but the Vista disk didn't give me either configuration to repair. It just gave an empty list of operating systems and the option to open drivers. When i clicked open drivers, none of the folders that appeared would work.

I was using the Microsoft Vista installation DVD. I also have a Vista repair disk on the shelf. I have no idea what that does or if I should try it instead.

Addendum:

The repair worked the second time. For some reason the hard drive didn't get detected by the BIOS at all the first time I booted the Vista dvd. This time it did and the fix worked. I have other problems, now, but not related to anything I did with EasyBCD and nothing a few hours reinstalling won't fix.

Addendum:

The repair worked the second time. For some reason the hard drive didn't get detected by the BIOS at all the first time I booted the Vista dvd. This time it did and the fix worked. I have other problems, now, but not related to anything I did with EasyBCD and nothing a few hours reinstalling won't fix.
 
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Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#4
Glad you've got Vista back.
Did you use Create bootable external media for your internal IDE HDD ?
(It's for making bootable USB flash-drives etc)