MBR or Boot Sector

Posted on 2006-03-27
Last Modified: 2011-09-20

Confused from reading!

Does each IPL device have a MBR? And, each partition a boot sector? Is the MBR OS independent and the boot sector OS dependent?

I assume the BIOS boot loader looks at the IPL devices to load the primary, then loads the MBR from that device. At that time the Active partition in the MBR is identified and the Boot Sector from that partition is loaded at which time the second stage Boot loaders (NTLDR, LILO, etc..) begin to load the OS into RAM.

Is any of this right?
Question by:link334
    LVL 18

    Expert Comment

    by:Sam Panwar
    LVL 69

    Accepted Solution

    Hi link334 I am probably off subject a bit here but it does seem to cover the whole subject.
     each partition a boot sector as far as I know no, unless you multi boot.
    then your boot.ini reflects the different operating systems.
    How To Multi-Boot Operating Systems
    Hope this helps
    Regards Merete


    Author Comment

    I appreciate the input.
    The articles you have listed are good and are where I got the original info prior to posting questions

    I am looking for summarization for clarity.


    Author Comment

    I was mistaken regarding the article you posted. This is quite a good article.

    I thank you for your help.
    LVL 69

    Expert Comment

    cool thanks, I appreciate sometimes we are just too busy and want quick answers.
    You have scroll down down on that one for the goodies. ;)

    Featured Post

    Find Ransomware Secrets With All-Source Analysis

    Ransomware has become a major concern for organizations; its prevalence has grown due to past successes achieved by threat actors. While each ransomware variant is different, we’ve seen some common tactics and trends used among the authors of the malware.

    Join & Write a Comment

    Just about everyone has an old PC laying around.  Ask anyone in the IT industry, whether they are a professional or play in it as a hobby.  From outdated Desktops to cheap "throwaway" laptops, they are all around and not as hard to "fix up" as you m…
    I. Introduction There's an interesting discussion going on now in an Experts Exchange Group — Attachments with no extension ( This reminded me of questions tha…
    In this seventh video of the Xpdf series, we discuss and demonstrate the PDFfonts utility, which lists all the fonts used in a PDF file. It does this via a command line interface, making it suitable for use in programs, scripts, batch files — any pl…
    Here's a very brief overview of the methods PRTG Network Monitor ( offers for monitoring bandwidth, to help you decide which methods you´d like to investigate in more detail.  The methods are covered in more detail in o…

    729 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

    Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

    Join & Ask a Question

    Need Help in Real-Time?

    Connect with top rated Experts

    21 Experts available now in Live!

    Get 1:1 Help Now