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MBR
Last modified: Monday, April 05, 2004 

Short for Master Boot Record, a small program that is executed when a computer boots up. Typically, the MBR resides on the first sector of the hard disk. The program begins the boot process by looking up the partition table to determine which partition to use for booting. It then transfers program control to the boot sector of that partition, which continues the boot process. In DOS and Windows systems, you can create the MBR with the FDISK /MBR command.

An MBR virus is a common type of virus that replaces the MBR with its own code. Since the MBR executes every time a computer is started, this type of virus is extremely dangerous. MBR viruses normally enter a system through a floppy disk that is installed in the floppy drive when the computer is started up. Even if the floppy disk is not bootable, it can infect the MBR.

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Getting the Boot
Describes how to plan, partition, install, and remove DOS, OS/2, NT, and other operating systems on the same disk at the same time. Includes information on how to diagnose boot time failures. Topics include: FDISK, MBR, BootManager, Dual Boot, boot sectors, primary partitions, and logical volumes.

related categories

DOS

Operating Systems

Windows

related terms

boot

bootable diskette

CERT/CC

dual boot

HLF

multipartite virus

operating system

partition

quarantine

virus

worm


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