I had an XP partition set as my boot partition, set to the left of my Windows 7 partition. I deleted the XP partition and expanded the 7 partition to the left. I tried to restore the MBR using ms-sys -m /dev/sda. After that didn't work I tried the same thing, except with -w instead of -m. Now, the Ubuntu Live CD shows the partition as an unknown filesystem.

I've tried the following:

  • If you Master Boot Record has been altered (which is what it sounds like) you are at the point of no return normally. I have never been able to recover an entire partition. Also, if you have been using your computer since then, you page file has probably written over those sectors on the hard drive causing the possibility of getting the data back to diminish completely. Sorry for your loss...
    – David
    Apr 11, 2012 at 19:41

2 Answers 2


Boot up with the Windows 7 DVD. Select the language and click Next. In the lower right corner, click Repair your computer (instead of the giant Install Now button in the middle of the screen).

Choose the Windows installation, click on an Administrative user, then OK. You'll see the Command Prompt as the last or second to last option. Click that.

Type bootrec /fixmbr and press Enter. Then type x:\boot\bootsect /nt60 all /force, replacing x: with the DVD drive detected, then press Enter. Then type bootrec /rebuildbcd and press Enter. Assuming it finds the Windows installation, you're off to the races


Well, according to Ubuntu, your NTFS partition became a RAW partition after trying to extend the NTFS partition. Extending shouldn't be possible on an NTFS partition, as the MBR is located in a specific block of the drive, and extending would change that. As the ms-sys utility couldn't find said block, it tried to create a new partition and overwrite the old one, which was protected, and ended up creating a mix between an NTFS with Windows 7 and an NTFS with nothing, so you're pretty much screwed.

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