HELP! Windows 7 MBR GONE! Partition Table GONE!!!

So three weeks ago I installed Windows 7 RC, and I was happy with it. So happy with it, in fact, that I proceeded to install quite lot of applications on it.

Anyway, last night I was installing the Dreamweaver CS4 trial, downloaded officially from their website. All of a sudden my PC froze, task manager wouldn't open, so I hit the reset button.
After that, windows would normally take an hour to boot. It would stay at the windows loading screen for an hour, then boot into windows, and the first time it did that, I realized that it was no longer detecting my 160GB E:\.
My partition configuration before this problem was this:

C:\ 15GB
D:\ 50GB
Remaining drive space lost due to partitioning
E:\ 149GB (which is the standard available space on a 160GB sata)

When my PC finally booted into Windows, I checked msconfig, and under BOOT it said "Windows 7(recovered); defaultOS; current OS".
Every time before showing the Windows loading screen, I also got a message saying some startup entry was preventing my computer from booting properly, and I should start the windows Startup Recovery from the disk.

I checked online, and on a few forums it said my MBR was corrupt. So I put in the Windows 7 installation disk, went in to Repair My Computer, waited, clicked on Startup Recovery, it ran for a few seconds, rebooted, and my problem was still there. I tried safe mode, and even safe mode took hours to boot. I tried Last Known Good Configuration, same problem.

Another solution told me to boot to DOS using the Windows setup CD and run the following command:
bootsect /nt60 /$something$
I dont remember the exact command, but I know it was right, cause it's an official Windows 7 command, like fixmbr in Windows XP.
Anyway, that didn't work either.

I finally found a utility called MBRFix:

I ran it's default command:
mbrfix /drive 0 fixmbr /yes
But that didn't work.
I also tried mbrfix /drive 0 fixmbr /vista, but that didn't work either.

As another forum suggested, I told MBRFix to CLEAN my MBR and then fix it, so that it would right a new one...

And tragedy struck...

As of now, Windows won't recognize any of my drives.
When I insert the Windows 7 setup CD in the drive, in the place where you're supposed to select a drive to install windows to, it shows C:\ 74GB UNCALLOCATED. It's showing my first physical drive as unallocated, its partitions are not showing up. And its not showing my second physical drive at all.
All linux live cds wont boot. Ubuntu and Knoppix drop me to a VERY LIMITED SHELL.

By default, if I dont insert any media and let the PC run, it comes to a NO BOOT DEVICE FOUND screen.

And now I have no idea what to do.
I obviously want all my data back.
BIOS is detecting all my drives properly.

I currently have access to a friends laptop, but I dont know for how long, so here's hoping you can get back to me ASAP.
I am sufficiently tech savvy, so I won't have a problem resorting to any amount of complicated instructions, I can only hope my data remains untouched.
I friend of mine suggested that installing Windows 7 to a USB drive and through it QUICK FORMATTING the original C: would restore it to normal usage without touching the data, but I don't know it this method would work with a drive hiding TWO partitions within it.

ANY amount of help would be appreciated,
Standing by for instructions,
Intel Core2Duo E4500 2.2 GHz
80GB IDE (two partitions) + 160GB SATA (no partition) HDDs
RJ45 Ethernet jack (LAN card unknown)

Well, if your 80 gig drive shows 74 gigs of unallocated space, then I'd say the best thing to do now is to just reformat the drive and start from scratch.

I don't think that a quick format will help even if you did manage to install and boot windows from a USB stick.
Full format will write zero's on every sector of the hard drive, completely erasing the data on it. A quick format will not, but will erase the drives MFT file, so even though there are files on it, you wont see it because of the new MFT labeling the drive empty and available.


New Member
Well,, for data recovery,, you might be able to try TestDisk Data Recovery
This is one of the best data recovery tools out there. Not it doesn't always work unfortunately, but if it is only a lost MFT, then it could work.

Messing with the MBR is ALWAYS a risky thing.
ALWAYS, recover data first before messing with the MRB,,, ALways and FOREVER.
Once you hose the MBR, all you can do is try to recover data and only then, test the HDD with diags, nuke and reload.

Second, 15G partition is no where even close to adequate size for a Win7 install, plus Page File, Plus added software, drivers, updates. It is likely, the system blew itself up due to lack of drive space.


New Member
I am not sure it was anything to do with the mbr in the first place.

I also got a message saying some startup entry was preventing my computer from booting properly
The finger of suspicion points at something from the recently installed app. failing to load.

You could try the Rescue cd , free from the lovely people at Paragon- use the file Transfer Wizard to copy your data off.

FREE Rescue Kit 9.0 Express - Don't wait for disaster, get instant data recovery software!

You can also try the various options to fix boot problems - you never know.

Otherwise, after saving your data - you will need to reformat and reinstall.

Boot Corrector

  • Search for valid Windows installations (Windows 2000/XP/Vista/Server)
  • Correct drive letters in the System Registry of a selected Windows installation
  • Correct “boot.ini” on selected disk
  • Correct Boot Configuration Data (BCD) files for partitions on selected disk or for partitions on all disks
  • Correct the Master Boot Record (MBR) executable code
  • Reorder primary partitions (change primary slots)
  • Correct the boot record for a selected Windows installation (increment the Serial Number, correct the partition offset, make a copy of the boot record, correct the Bootsect.dos file if exists)
  • Set an active partition
  • Hide/unhide partitions
  • Change Serial Numbers
  • Change Partition IDs
  • Display the MBR in a more understandable format
  • Display partition properties
  • Create, display, save or print a boot correction report
  • Adjust OS to boot on new hardware (Windows Vista only)
File Transfer Wizard

  • Export important files and folders from the partition (including GPT disks) to another local drive, or burn them to CD/DVD in case of system failure

Undelete Partition Wizard

  • Undelete partitions (recover accidentally deleted or lost partitions)

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