Master Boot Record

A Master Boot Record (MBR) is a special type of boot sector at the very beginning of partitioned computer mass storage devices like fixed disks or removable drives intended for use with IBM PC-compatible systems and beyond. The MBR holds the information on how the logical partitions, containing file systems, are organized on that medium. Besides that, the MBR functions as an operating system independent chain boot loader in conjunction with each partition's Volume Boot Record (VBR).

MBRs are not present on non-partitioned media like floppies, superfloppies or other storage devices configured to behave as such.

The concept of MBRs was introduced in 1983. With storage volumes now commonly exceeding 2 TB, it has become a limiting factor in the 2010s. The MBR partitioning scheme is therefore in the process of being superseded by the GUID Partition Table (GPT) scheme in new computers. A GPT can coexist with a MBR in order to provide some limited form of backward compatibility for older systems.

Read more about Master Boot Record:  Overview, Disk Partitioning, System Bootstrapping, Disk Identity, Programming Considerations, Editing/replacing MBR Contents

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