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MBR problem: fiddle or leave it?


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#1
PoleMist

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Greetings. I have an old, but functioning Sony Vaio (PCG-FX203), using Win ME. Initially, I wanted to increase the RAM, and bought the right stuff. It wasn't picking it up, and I have since discovered that (apparently) Sony are known for "bad" RAM slots. There was a lot of mucking about trying to get things working, and it ended up 1) not booting every time then 2) not booting at all (power light on, but black screen.) This was (apparently) because it wasn't picking up / happy with the RAM connections. This has been fixed, and it IS booting up ok - reliably, and is perfectly useable.
As I had not been online on the machine for a while, I updated my (Norton) virus protection whatnot, and ran a scan.
It told me it was not finding the Master Boot Record to scan (MBR missing.) Presumably this was caused by the constant attempts to get it working post RAM addition (repeated forced power downs.) Presumably, also, Fdisk (fdisk /mbr) is designed to deal with such things, but I am worried about blowing its beautiful brains out (it IS a lovely little laptop...)
As I say, it IS booting up ok - everything works - what do you guys out there reckon...to touch or not to touch? :)
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#2
123Runner

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If the MBR (master boot record) is missing, your computer wont boot up to the OS.

The master boot record could be corrupted. The master boot record is stored in the first sector of your hard disk. It is an important data structure that contains the code instructions to the the system on how to boot up to an operable system. In this case, when you power up your computer, the BIOS identifies the boot device and detects invalid information in the master boot record. Some viruses also like to attack this record causing the computer to malfunction during boot up. Hence, your system halts and displays a blank screen


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#3
PoleMist

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Thanks 123Runner; but if the MBR is corrupted, what is the best way to check that / fixit? I just tried running the virus scan again and this message came up: "drive access error. unable to read the boot record on hard drive #0. Check to make sure the drive is ready." Clicking on "retry" takes me round in a loop; clicking on "continue" takes me to the next message: "unable to read the boot record on drive C: Check to make sure the drive is ready." Well, all the drives seem to be ready enough to me - they're working (for the moment?) Any advice would be appreciated.
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#4
123Runner

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So if I understand you correctly, you can get it to boot and work?
You only get the errors when you run your scanner?

If this is correct, I would normally have you run "fixmbr" from the recovery console. SEE HERE .

But I would wait for some other responses on this.
If you wish to proceed, do so at your own risk. Backup all your data first.
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