Restore the MBR and partition information, therefore restoring the file system

As the MBR and partition information both resided in track 0, which was wiped when recreated the striped set, we need to first manually restore the partition information and then automatically recover the MBR. The references to sectors in this section only deal with logical sectors as we are now dealing with sectors on the RAID 0 disk.

The NTFS partition information can be copied back to sector 63 either by restoring it from a backup on a floppy disk or by copying it from a replica found later in the NTFS partition (as shown in the previous section). To confirm that the data is valid, use a human-readable converter to check that the ‘Big total sectors’ value is correct based on the calculations described previously. Other values, such as the NTFS signature, magic bytes, etc, should always be correct.

Recovery of the MBR can be done in many ways. To approach this manually, one could use an MBR editor to create an empty MBR and insert a single entry that describes the NTFS partition with its sector boundaries. Another option could to restore it from a copy on a floppy disk, and check the entry, editing where necessary. The automatic method, and perhaps the safest, is to use partition/MBR recovery software. It will scan the disk looking for partition information blocks (here it would find the NTFS one) to deduce the entries the MBR should contain. Once it has found valid partitions, it will re-create the entire contents of sector 0 and insert the correct entry to describe the NTFS partition. This whole process can usually be achieved simply by following a wizard in modern programs.

Once the MBR and partition information have been restored, the process is complete. You can now restart the computer and pray to your deity of choice.


Thank you for reading this guide! I hope it was helpful. If you have a spare moment, drop me an email telling me of your experience or if you have any comments regarding this guide.