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Corrupt MBR

Last response: in Systems
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August 21, 2009 5:57:55 PM

Hi guys,

So I just moved into my new dormitory with my new computer I built over the summer and was mortified to receiver the error that my MBR was corrupt. At first I thought it'd be an easy fix using the repair utility on the Windows Vista DVD (32-bit), but my system powers off before I even have the chance to boot from CD/DVD.

I have tried removing components, but nothing seems to work. I'll give you the specs and hopefully I can get some help.


MoBo: GIGABYTE GA-EX58-UD4P LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard
Processor: Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920
Hard Drive (Primary Drive): Intel X25-M SSDSA2MH080G1 80GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid state disk (SSD)
RAM: G.SKILL 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Triple Channel
GFX: 2x EVGA 896-P3-1257-AR GeForce GTX 260 Core 216 Superclocked Edition 896MB SLI
PSU: Antec TruePower Quattro TPQ-1000 1000W Continuous Power ATX12V / EPS12V
OS: Vista Ultimate 32-bit

More about : corrupt mbr

a b B Homebuilt system
August 21, 2009 6:07:48 PM

I assume you reset the boot device order to boot from the DVD drive first right? Aside from the repair utility on the DVD the only other way i know how to repair an MBR is via DOS using a bootable floppy, but that technique hasnt been viable for years. If the repair utility cant fix it you may need to get a linux live CD, back everything up onto an external and do a clean install.
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August 21, 2009 8:39:27 PM

I am tempted to think that this is not a typical corrupted mbr,

Because on the occasional start the computer has actually started loading Windows off the HDD, but then the computer shuts off. I am seriously thinking it is the power. Is it possible that the PSU can't draw the proper power to maintain operating voltages? I mean, if the mbr is shot, why would the OS try to load from HDD?
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August 22, 2009 2:40:26 PM

First if it was the MBR the PC wouldn't reboot... You'll have a black screen with an error message...

First thing you should try its to plug the PC into a different power outlet/room, the problem looks like a bad power output from the wall. Current isn't stable enought. A UPS should do the trick to help stabilize the current and protect the PC from power surge.

I had this kind of problem a few times and was able to solve everything with either a UPS or different power source.

But it might be something else...
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August 29, 2009 12:46:29 AM

Well after testing it in a new building only two years old and well capable of running 1kW PSU's...it still did the same thing.

So after tearing the whole thing apart, it turns out it was the CPU overheating on startup. During move-in to college my improperly set heatsink finally came loose. So nothing more than a case of n00bitis. Nothing was hurt, thermal paste needs replaced though.
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a c 136 B Homebuilt system
August 29, 2009 3:12:17 AM

glad it all worked well in the end :-)
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a b B Homebuilt system
August 29, 2009 4:30:09 AM

This is off the topic, but 6GB of RAM in a system with a 32-bit OS is an absolute waste since you'll be lucky to have half of it available with your GPU's. Are you aware that you need a 64-bit OS to fully access 4GB+ of RAM?
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