I have my Windows 7 x64 ISO on my pendrive, but WinToFlash app forgot to install the MBR (again).

The only PC I have, uses x86 Win7 , so it won't install the bootrec.exe, since that is a 64bit binary.

I need the /boot/ folder from the Win7 ISO/disc. (32-bit)
Where can I download only that? Can anyone give me a link?

  • Found a "bootsect.exe" on ZippyShare using Google, and it works. HOWEVER, this is not really safe (even if Avast says so), so the question remains open.
    – Apache
    Jun 14 '11 at 10:18
  • I doubt you'd be able to download folder folders such as those.. without having to resort to "seedy" places. Perhaps I can upload it somewhere.
    – Sathyajith Bhat
    Jun 14 '11 at 11:01
  • I'd appreciate that upload. But seriously... Microsoft doesn't provide a legal way for people? :/
    – Apache
    Jun 14 '11 at 12:19
  • you can borrow a Windows DVD or download a Windows DVD over torrents and use your key and remain legal.
    – Sathyajith Bhat
    Jun 14 '11 at 12:30
  • @Sathya - I'm using MSDN ISO. But this happened to me a lot of times. Downloaded the ISO from my MSDNAA account. Made the (there are some options here) USB install "disk", and then it wouldn't boot. Now, you don't have a PC where you can fix things ... worse if you have a PC with XP and so on. Downloading the whole ISO again (since you used YOUR PC to do that), takes some time.
    – Apache
    Jun 14 '11 at 13:05

10 Answers 10


BootRec.exe is not officially available for download. However, you can extract it from any legitimate Windows 7 ISO.

You'll need something capable of reading a WIM file - 7zip should suffice for this. From the root of the ISO, open .\sources\boot.wim. From there, BootRec.exe can be found in .\1\Windows\System32\.

  • If this is true I believe it should be marked as the best answer. Oct 23 '15 at 17:54
  • On my old Lenovo ThinkPad X201i, it can be found here: Hidden recovery partition → 7z l FactoryRecovery/sdrivebackup.wim | grep -i '\.wim'Recovery/WindowsRE/winRE.wim7z l winRE.wim | grep -i bootrec.exeWindows/System32/BootRec.exe. Aug 5 '18 at 9:31

you can find it in the install.wim\Windows\System32\Recovery\Winre.wim\Windows\System32\bootrec.exe

  • 1
    Man that was the only working and real adress to that file, yet this post has 2 dislikes. What the .. is wrong people?
    – ek.bic
    Jun 6 '18 at 4:43

Microsoft doesn't offer individual files from their operating systems available for download. However, you can legally and safely download the entire Windows 7 64-bit .iso from http://msft-dnl.digitalrivercontent.net/msvista/pub/X15-65805/X15-65805.iso

Sources: This SuperUser answer, which provides a full list of ISOs available for download, as well as that answer's original source.

Or you could visit a friend and make a copy of the file from their computer...

  • 2
    Are you sure that bootrec.exe is inside ISO? I have have browsed original Windows7 ISO content and found no bootrec.exe. There is only boot\bootsect.exe.
    – dma_k
    Oct 4 '15 at 11:33

Hiren's Boot CD contains several boot environments that include that tool, among others (Try Mini Windows XP). You can download it here:

Download: http://www.hirensbootcd.org/download/

Info: http://www.hiren.info/pages/bootcd

  • 1
    Thanks for the hint for Hiren's Boot CD 15.2. After booting from that ISO, its "Dos Programs" menu contains lots of MBR tools (and there is a trick: type "M" + "<ENTER>" in DOS command line will bring up Hiren's Boot CD's menu, to save you from a reboot to switch to next tool). I'm yet to find a bootrec.exe nor any tool to be able to fix my hard disk booting issue, though, but still thanks for sharing the interesting Hiren's Boot CD.
    – RayLuo
    Oct 19 '20 at 9:01

You can also install grub on the drive using a linux distro which will automatically scan and add all available operating systems on the drive to it's loader. Note removing the usb drive woun't affect booting.

More info 1 Recovering GRUB after installing Windows More info 2 Grub as bootloader


You can open up boot.wim using the free 7-Zip utility at http://www.7-zip.org/download.html

  • Welcome to Super User! This duplicates another answer and adds no new content. Please don't post an answer unless you actually have something new to contribute.
    – DavidPostill
    Oct 8 '16 at 19:55

If you have a working computer that has a similar image, such as in an enterprise environment, you can do the following: WindowsKey + R and then type recdisc.exe and press Enter. This will give you the dialog used to create a repair disc which when finished contains a WinRE-image that has BootRec.exe on it.


Or simply download the entire .Iso installer file of the windows OS you are using and look for it in the folders or simply do a search in that directory.


If you can still boot into Windows, then this should work on Windows 10:

  • From the windows start menu, or in the cortana search box enter ‘Change advanced Startup Options’
  • Alternatively go to 'Settings' from the windows start menu, and search 'Recovery options'.
  • Under 'Advanced Starup' click 'Restart now'.

When the computer restarts, choose 'Troubleshoot', 'Advanced options', and select 'Command Prompt'.

When the computer restarts, you should get a recovery prompt where 'bootrec.exe' is available. You may have to login with your windows account first.

  • Thank you for your reply. To be fair, I mostly used the tool for recovery, where you can't boot anymore. But, the issue is getting less and less relevant now. 1) I was able to backup the tool for all Windows for myself. Which every IT admin should do I guess until Microsoft comes to it's senses. 2) Today we have 100mbps+ connections, SSD, etc. Back in '11, it was a major hassle to grab an entire ISO, extract, and just copy up the tool. Thank you for your post!
    – Apache
    Oct 21 '18 at 7:47

You can also extract BootRec.exe from the Windows 10 ISO file. My Win 10 is in 7z archive, so I used the 7-Zip program to browse the Wim in the ISO.

If you have just a plain ISO, which is not compressed in any other format you can still browse the ISO with 7-Zip.

The file location is as follows:


I right clicked on the file and extracted to desktop, so I can copy to my System32 folder.

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