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Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ?? (Read 38552 times)
henriette
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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #30 - Jun 15th, 2012 at 7:35am
 
WOW, Dan  Smiley

How can I ever thank you for spending so much time  Kiss

UBCD contains *MbrWork* (Boot Management).

http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/

(scroll down to see the content).

Quote:
MbrWork backs up and restores what you actually had.  It not only backs up all of LBA 0 (the bootstrap code, the DiskID, and the partition table), but goes further and backs up all of Track 0.  When you restore Track 0, you end up restoring all three parts of LBA 0, so even if the virus had moved your partition table it won't matter because MbrWork is restoring your saved partition table, too.

I take from your post that *MbrWork* is a brilliant tool for me  Smiley

Quote:
If you've installed a multiboot manager

My PC has single boot only (shown while booting). --> old board &&.

My main internal HDD = HDD1 has 5 partitions > C-D-E-F-G.

It's a WD HDD, 500GB < = biggest recommended size for internal HDD ---> support ASUS.

Quote:
It's not always necessary to backup more than LBA 0, but I don't bother trying to figure out whether I need to or not.  The backups are tiny, so I backup all of Track 0 as a matter of routine.

I'd assume the above goes for "multiboot" only. So I wouldn't need it ...

Still there are a lot of questions:
(so sorry ...   Undecided

1. What commands do I need °within° *MbrWork* (whole procedure) ?

2. Where should I store the backup of *MbrWork* ? --> HDD2 internal ?

Quote:
you can achieve the same result with individual images of each partition plus a Track 0 backup.

Do you mean by that (having an image of C:\ only):

> Restoring image of C:\ , THEN add the *MbrWork* backup to C:\ ?

3. At what point exactly "restore" the *MbrWork*-backup ?

4. Do I (mainly) have to use *MbrWork* only when I have caught a MBR-virus ?

5. how can I tell If I've caught a MBR virus ?



note #1: I'm using *ESET NOD32 AV 5*.

note #2: I've searched the web + UBCD forums > can't seem to find any instruction of how to use *MbrWork*.
Neither in English nor _of course  Roll Eyes_ in German.

You may understand that it's fatal if I'm already in PC-DOS > *MbrWork*, not knowing what to do next!

Thanks again for your detailed help - I'm hoping the board will forgive me for asking non-backup-software questions in here Embarrassed

henriette   


 

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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #31 - Jun 15th, 2012 at 3:02pm
 
@
henriette

Quote:
UBCD contains *MbrWork* (Boot Management).

Yes, it appears to be the same version you can get from TeraByte Unlimited Freeware page.  Scroll down to about the middle of the page and you will find *MBRWork* version 1.08.

Quote:
1. What commands do I need °within° *MbrWork* (whole procedure) ?

Quoting from the above TeraByte page:

Quote:
MBRWork is a utility to perform some common and uncommon tasks to the MBR/EMBR sectors of a hard drive. It should only be used by power users who understand how computers work. The readme.txt file in the ZIP contains a list of the tasks available.

So, probably the various tasks and how to use them are in that *readme.txt* file.  Just extract the files from the ZIP and then you can load it using NotePad or WordPad.  Most likely that *readme.txt* file is also on the UBCD disk in the directory where the MBRWork *.exe* file is located.

Quote:
2. Where should I store the backup of *MbrWork* ? --> HDD2 internal ?

Floppy disk or any other HDD that you will have access to if you need to restore it to the source HDD from which it came.

Quote:
3. At what point exactly "restore" the *MbrWork*-backup ?

When you have decided to replace the MBR (for whatever reason) with that backup MBR file--and before you restore the Ghost OS partition file.  If you do any HDD changes to the basic structure--like any changing of the partition sizes, number of partitions, etc.--you need to make an updated backup of the MBR--have to keep it up to date.  If you don't make any changes, ever, then that original backup will remain valid.

Quote:
4. Do I (mainly) have to use *MbrWork* only when I have caught a MBR-virus ?

Probably, unless some other event somehow corrupts your MBR.

Quote:
5. how can I tell If I've caught a MBR virus ?

When you suddenly have unexplained behavior that appears to be *bad*, and you have not installed a program that you know is supposed to be doing that behavior.  Even then, it will probably be hard to know for sure--you will have to rule out other possibilities, probably ask for help, or Google the behavior to see if others recognize it as a problem.  Possibly running multiple scans using your Antivirus program, or using the on-line scans provided by various Antivirus providers--sometimes you have to run an antivirus scan after you close down Windows and run it from a booted optical disc.

Quote:
I'm hoping the board will forgive me for asking non-backup-software questions in here

Not to worry!  Backing up the MBR is part of what imaging backups of the OS include--either inside of the imaging program--or separately like MBRWork.

henriette wrote on Jun 14th, 2012 at 10:38am:
NightOwl wrote:
Quote:

Quote:
the key, is *zeroing* the MBR before the restore of the image!


How to do that

Any disk editor program that you can use once booted to DOS will work.  Just below the MBRWork v1.08 download mentioned above on TeraBytes Free Utilities is another MBR program called *MBR Utility*.   Quoting its description:

Quote:
MBR allows you to manipulate a drive's master boot record (MBR) via the command line. For example, MBR is capable of deleting all the partitions in a MBR, zeroing out a MBR, installing a standard MBR, and more. MBR runs under DOS/Linux/Windows

And, there are other tools and utilities that can do this for you.  I suspect that the MBRWork program also has this function--but, I have not checked yet.

 

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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #32 - Jun 15th, 2012 at 5:29pm
 
This is a screenshot from an older MBRWork version but it outlines the menu. The newer version has a few extra choices.

http://members.shaw.ca/LeesPlace/mbrwork.htm

To backup the First Track you must be running MBRWork from writable media. If you run it from a USB flash drive you must remember that the flash drive is HD0 so you have to change to HD1 before you "Backup First Track". From a floppy, your first internal HD will be HD0.
 
 
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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #33 - Jun 15th, 2012 at 7:54pm
 
Brian and NightOwl have covered a lot of the specifics, but I'll elaborate on a few points.


henriette wrote on Jun 15th, 2012 at 7:35am:
I take from your post that *MbrWork* is a brilliant tool for me [...]

    re: "It's not always necessary to backup more than LBA 0, but I don't bother trying to figure out whether I need to or not.The backups are tiny, so I backup all of Track 0 as a matter of routine."

I'd assume the above goes for "multiboot" only. So I wouldn't need it ...

In general, yeah--but it's not always obvious when you might have a de facto "multiboot" system.

For instance, during the XP-era many OEM computers (Dell, HP, and maybe others) came with a proprietary dual-boot configuration to implement their "factory restore" options.  They appeared to be single-boot systems because the user didn't see a boot menu, but in fact there was a hidden, alternate-boot function accessed via magic key combinations at boot time.

Some third-party vendors may implement similar techniques.  Acronis, for example, touts their "Secure Zone" feature, but if you install it you are essentially installing an Acronis-specific dual-boot, accessible via magic keys.

If you install a linux-only machine, the grub bootloader is larger than a single sector, so uses some of those additional sectors in Track 0, as well.

My point is there is no harm in backing up all of Track 0 instead of just LBA 0 alone.  At worst, a Track 0 backup is capturing LBA 0 plus a bunch of empty sectors--but there's nothing wrong with that.  However, if one of those erstwhile "empty" sectors actually isn't empty and contains crucial data in it, a Track 0 backup can save your rear.

Rather than trying to figure out when or if you need to backup more than LBA 0, just do a Track 0 backup as a matter of habit and you'll never have to worry about it.



Quote:
Do I (mainly) have to use *MbrWork* only when I have caught a MBR-virus ?

Like a partition image, you only need to use it if you think something's wrong, or if you're moving everything to a new HDD.  You're only going to restore a partition image if you think something's wrong with your existing partition.  You're only going to restore Track 0 if you think something messed up your bootstrap code or your partition table.

If you're only needing Ghost to restore your OS, you don't need to restore everything on your hard disk.  You don't need to also restore Track 0 unless you suspect there's something wrong with it.

As NightOwl cautioned, be careful if you've subsequently repartitioned your hard disk.  Repartitioning changes your partition table, so you don't want to restore Track 0 and paste your old, obsolete partition table back in there.  If you repartition, make a new Track 0 backup.

If you ever need to rebuild your entire HDD from scratch--say, on a new, replacement HDD, for example--you need to restore your MBR, partition table, and all partitions.  There are three common strategies for backing up all of those pieces:
    (1) A Track 0 backup, plus a Ghost image of C, plus duplicate copies of the contents in the other four partitions.  (The non-OS partitions don't actually need to be Ghost images, so simple copies of the contents will do.)

    (2) A Track 0 backup, plus individual Ghost images of each partition.  This is essentially option 1 but choosing to use Ghost to backup the data partitions.

    (3) A Ghost whole-disk image.  This is essentially option 2 with everything all together in one backup.  Note this may be the easiest to create, but because of its size it's harder to store.

If you're rebuilding everything on a new HDD, you don't have to partition it beforehand.  Ghost does need partitions to restore into, but partitioning is taken care of by restoring Track 0.  **

So start by restoring Track 0, which restores your MBR bootstrap code, DiskID, and your partition table.  By restoring the partition table, you have, in one fell swoop, defined your partition boundaries, and your disk is now "partitioned", in a manner of speaking--they're empty, raw partitions at this point, but it's partitioned.  Now you have something into which Ghost can pour the contents of the partition image.  After Ghost does that, you'll have a complete, usable partition.

If your backup strategy was to use Ghost images for your data partitions, restoring such an image will automatically convert a raw partition into whatever format, NTFS or FAT32, the original source was.

If your strategy was to make simple copies of the contents of data partitions, then you must first format the raw partition to either NTFS or FAT32 before you can copy the contents back into the new partition.  (Note the flexibility here--the new partition doesn't have to be the same format as the original.)

** caveat re: partitioning... you have five partitions, so you must be using an Extended primary partition with two or more logical volumes within it.  Restoring your partition table will only restore your primary partition layout, not the extended/logical partitions.  The total space of your Extended partition will be laid out, but not how it is subdivided.  You'll need to define its logical partitions by some other means--a normal partitioning utility or even Windows will do.

This may be confusing, so let me illustrate with an example.  Let's say your 5 partitions are laid out thusly:

NTFS primary + NTFS primary + extended (logical + logical + logical)

Restoring Track 0 would "partition" your new disk into:

(raw primary) + (raw primary) + (raw extended)

Restoring Ghost images (or formatting and copying contents) will restore the two primaries back to NTFS primaries, but the subdivisions of your extended partition haven't been defined yet.

Since the exact sizes are rarely critical, just use Windows Disk Management or any partitioning utility to carve your three logical volumes in the Extended space, and then you can fill them back up.




 
 
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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #34 - Jun 16th, 2012 at 8:53am
 
You're all giving me such an overwhelming support. All I can tell you is that last night my brain was busier than ever - I woke up ... my small and dark intelligence had been illuminated (at least I hope so) ... by your wonderful °input° Smiley

NightOwl
wrote:

Quote:
zeroing out a MBR

IMHO that can be done by *MbrWork* too.

*MbrWork 1.08:

Quote:
the various tasks and how to use them are in that *readme.txt* file

see attachment


Brian's
link is somewhat different (older version).

All I need to know now is:


In which order should I chose the tasks ?

I want to backup the MBR > then clean the MBR > restore the cleaned (from possible virus) MBR to my 1st HDD.

without any img restore, mind! > Just have a clean MBR, also for later backups, unless I change anything, that's understood.


I understand step #1 = "backup first track" - of course  Roll Eyes

After that I still don't know > "Restore first track" would make no sense to me, cause there were no changes made at all. = 'zig' > 'zag'  Grin

Dan
may be kind enough to tell me the further steps, because he's familiar with *MbrWork*

>>>> step #1 = "Backup First Track"
>>>> step #2 = ?
>
>
>

(After all I don't want to end up with a damaged PC.).

henriette   Kiss

 

README.TXT (1 KB | 197 )

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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #35 - Jun 16th, 2012 at 3:02pm
 
henriette wrote on Jun 16th, 2012 at 8:53am:
Dan may be kind enough to tell me the further steps, because he's familiar with *MbrWork*

Yes, MbrWork is one of the small handful of Terabyte products that I'm familiar with, but don't count out Brian--he's our resident expert in all things Terabyte!



Quote:
All I need to know now is:

In which order should I chose the tasks ?

I want to backup the MBR > then clean the MBR > restore the cleaned (from possible virus) MBR to my 1st HDD.

I'm not clear on what you're asking.  Maybe I missed it earlier in the thread, but are you thinking your current MBR is infected and needs repair?  I thought you were just looking to backup your current MBR to protect against possible future problems.  Or are you simply asking in which order you should do things if/when disaster strikes in the future?  Or are you under the impression MBRs gradually get dirty over time and need occasional cleaning?

The answer to the latter is no--if your bootstrap code hasn't been infected, it is going to be identical to what it was on the day it was first put on your computer.  Your partition table should be just as it was when you last repartitioned.  These parts don't change through use.

Mbrwork is a DOS program, so you need to boot to real DOS to use it.  I have a DOS-bootable USB flash drive, so I put mbrwork.exe on that.  As Brian warned earlier, when you boot from a flash drive it becomes "Drive 0" and your main HDD becomes "Drive 1", so after you launch mbrwork.exe you use the "change active hard drive" option to make sure you're working on the correct disk.  (If you boot from a DOS-bootable CD, you don't need that step.)  To backup Track 0 for safekeeping, select "Backup First Track".  This puts a tiny .bin backup file on the flash drive.  Restoring Track 0 is similar--boot from flash drive, switch to "Drive 1", then "Restore First Track".  In the interim, you can copy the .bin file to some other medium if you want, then move it back to the flash drive if/when you need to restore.

If you're trying to repair your MBR and don't have a prior backup, use the above steps to backup Track 0.  This gives you something to return to in case your repair attempts go wrong.  Then use MbrWork to "Install standard MBR code".  This will replace any infected bootstrap code with a known-good MBR.  That code should work fine unless you've got some kind of multiboot system.  (And if it doesn't, you've got your pre-repair Track 0 to return to while you figure out a Plan B.)

Does this answer your question?


 
 
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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #36 - Jun 17th, 2012 at 7:43am
 
Dan
wrote:

Quote:
are you thinking your current MBR is infected and needs repair?

No  Wink

Quote:
Or are you under the impression MBRs gradually get dirty over time and need occasional cleaning?

I thought it might, but you assure me "The answer is no.".   Smiley Smiley

Quote:
I thought you were just looking to backup your current MBR to protect against possible future problems.

Yes, actually I thought about what might happen if I'd chose the wrong HDD by mistake  Shocked

So I decided to only backup my current MBR.
That way I'd be on the safe side, if anything should ever be wrong in the future. Correct ?

I'd backup the MBR whenever I'd make any changes:

NightOwl
wrote:
Quote:
If you do any HDD changes to the basic structure--like any changing of the partition sizes, number of partitions, etc.--you need to make an updated backup of the MBR--have to keep it up to date.  If you don't make any changes, ever, then that original backup will remain valid.


Dan
wrote:
Quote:
Or are you simply asking in which order you should do things if/when disaster strikes in the future?

That as well.

May I assume that in such case a restore of the (latest) MBR backup would fix the problem (see below!) Huh

Steps (as I take from your post):

1. I boot from a DOS-bootable CD (UBCD).
< I DON'T have to 'switch to drive X'.
.

2. To backup Track 0 for safekeeping, I select "Backup First Track".

Dan
wrote:
Quote:
This puts a tiny .bin backup file on the
flash drive

Well, ... where will it be 'put' if I don't use a flash drive  Undecided

3. copy the .bin file to floppy disk ??? > move it back to
the flash drive
<
I don't use a flash drive --> WHAT now ?
if/when I need to restore.
(same problem as above.).

4. (Only if necessary some day):
To restore Track 0 > UBCD > then "Restore First Track".

Quote:
If you're trying to repair your MBR and don't have a prior backup, use the above steps to backup Track 0.  This gives you something to return to in case your repair attempts go wrong. 
Then use MbrWork to "Install standard MBR code".  This will replace any infected bootstrap code with a known-good MBR


The above would be #5.

----> I still got the problem: how to GET the *.bin file on a floppy disk  Roll Eyes ... IMHO there's no way.

I deeply regret my lack of knowledge ...  Embarrassed

henriette   




 

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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #37 - Jun 17th, 2012 at 10:30am
 
@
henriette

Quote:
----> I still got the problem: how to GET the *.bin file on a floppy disk   ... IMHO there's no way.

Do you know the Simon and Garfunkel song *50 Ways to Leave Your Lover*?  Well, that's about how many different ways you can do something when using DOS or Windows  Cheesy !

Brian wrote on Jun 15th, 2012 at 5:29pm:
To backup the First Track you must be running MBRWork from writable media.

From this statement, I took this to mean MBRWork defaults to writing the MBR backup to the media and file directory from which MBRWork loads from.  This is not an uncommon DOS program behavior.  On the other hand, many DOS programs allow you to change the destination where an output file will be saved.  I'm going to have to take a look at MBRWork to see if any such option exists--but, the *readme.txt* file referenced previously above is certainly of no help!

But, if the above statement is *true*--then you will not be able to use MBRWork from the Ultimate Boot CD--or any bootable CD from which you load MBRWork--because DOS does not support writing to optical media (Ghost does--from within the DOS Ghost program--but DOS by itself does not).





So, here's one of the *50 ways*--most DOS programs are *stand alone*--you don't have to start them from a boot disk, and there don't have to be other helper files (except the ones that come with the DOS program itself--but, those type of programs are the big, complicated ones):

1.  While in Windows, create a new floppy disk that's dedicated to MBRWork by placing the MBRWork.exe program on it (most new floppy disks come pre-formatted--so you don't have to do any formatting, and the floppy does not need to be a boot disk either--just a plain storage floppy disk).

2.  Your system has a floppy drive--that's what you use to boot to DOS and run Ghost 2003--so boot using your Ghost boot floppy--if Ghost starts *automatically* (i.e. your autoexec.bat loads Ghost.exe for you), simply quit Ghost and you will be at the A:\ prompt.

3.  Now eject your Ghost boot floppy, and place the MBRWork floppy in the A:\ drive.  Type *mbrworks.exe* and MBRWork will load from that floppy.

4.  Once MBRWork is loaded--you can proceed to make the backup.  Because you loaded MBRWork form the MBRWork floppy in drive A:\, your backup *.bin* file should be saved to your MBRWork dedicated floppy (check to make sure it's there).  Put it away for safe keeping, and you're done!




And here's another one to the *50 ways*  Wink :

1.  If you're booting from the Ultimate Boot CD (or any other bootable optical disc that's booting to DOS), and load MBRWork from it--in order to boot to DOS from an optical disc, a *virtual floppy drive* is created, and it will be assigned the A:\ drive letter.  But, your physical floppy drive still exists (assuming you have one in the first place--and you do).  It will no longer be the A:\ drive because the bootable optical disc will have taken that drive letter.  But, DOS is more than happy to support two floppy drives!  So, your physical floppy drive is now B:\!

2.  So, if MBRWork is automatically loaded when booting from the Ultimate Boot CD, exit the program, and you should be at the *virtual floppy drive* A:\ prompt.  Type *B:* and press *Enter* to change the focus of the DOS prompt from A: to B:.  (Technically, it might not be the A:\ drive at the DOS prompt--if MBRWork is loaded from a sub-directory on the optical disc, then the DOS prompt will be focused on the optical drive's drive letter, and possibly sub-directory--still same procedure though, just type *B:* at whatever prompt you are at and press *Enter*.)

3.  Put your dedicated MBRWork floppy, as mentioned above, into the physical drive, type *mbrwork.exe* and load MBRWork from the physical floppy disk.  Tell MBRWork to save your first track, and the *.bin* file should be saved to the floppy disk at drive letter B:\!  You're done--put that floppy disk away for safe keeping.


Give either method a try and see what happens--you can't cause any harm to your system if you are creating backups--it's only when you do something that *writes* to your HDD (such as doing a restore of the MBR) that you might get in trouble--if you use the wrong *.bin* file that's outdated, or for a different HDD or computer!

If and when you might need to restore that MBR *.bin* file, simply boot to DOS, put the MBRWork dedicated floppy with that backed up MBR *.bin* file on it in the floppy drive, change the DOS focus to that drive (either A:\ or B:\ depending on the situation), load MBRWork, and choose the restore function.

 

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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #38 - Jun 17th, 2012 at 2:01pm
 
NightOwl wrote on Jun 17th, 2012 at 10:30am:
re: "To backup the First Track you must be running MBRWork from writable media."

From this statement, I took this to mean MBRWork defaults to writing the MBR backup to the media and file directory from which MBRWork loads from. 

In technical terms, the "Backup.." and "Restore First Track" options read/write to the DOS environment's CWD ("Current Working Directory").

Some Windows users may not be familiar with the concept.  The CWD is the active directory--where your command prompt is sitting at the moment.  The DOS environment is often configured to explicitly state the CWD with the command prompt.  Thus, you'll see your flashing cursor, waiting for your command, immediately following something like "A:\>" or "C:\DOS>".  (The ">" is the command prompt, and the part before it is the CWD.)

Programs need not reside in the CWD to be launched.  If they're in some other directory, they can be launched by calling them with the full pathname--ala, "c:\util\mbrwork", for example.  (Aside: The full pathname can be omitted if the executable's location is a directory in the DOS environment's "path" . . . but that's another topic.)

I don't use UBCD so don't know how it's structured.  But for the purposes of illustration, let's say when it boots you're left at (or can escape to) the A:> prompt, your floppy drive is B:, and the mbrwork.exe file is in the R:\TOOLS directory.  You can issue the following commands:
    A:\>
    b:

    B:\>
    r:\tools\mbrwork

The first command changes the current working drive from A: to B:.  Until it's changed, B:'s CWD is its root, so B:\ is now your CWD.  (Aside: in the DOS world, "B:" denotes a drive, while "B:\" is a directory.)  You can launch MbrWork from the CD (drive R:, in this illustration) by explicitly calling it, but B:\ is still your CWD.  When you exit MbrWork, you'll be back at the B:\> prompt.  While you're in MbrWork, the "Backup/Restore First Track" functions will read/write to the B:\ directory.

An even easier option is to use MbrWork's "Capture Sectors" or "Restore Sectors" function instead of "Backup/Restore First Track".  (Caution: remember, Brian warned the sample readme file mentioned earlier was for an old version, so it doesn't show these options.  I trust henriette is actually exploring MbrWork for real and not looking only at the old readme.)  "Capture/Restore Sectors" is like "Backup/Restore First Track" except you get to dictate the variables--how many sectors, starting location, and filename.  So if you're running MbrWork from CD you can select "Capture Sectors" from the menu, then tell it to start from Sector 0, capture 63 sectors, and save to "b:\mymbr.bin" (or whatever you want to name it).  "Backup First Track" is just "Capture Sectors" prescripted to save 63 sectors from LBA 0 to "{cwd}\back0.bin".  (We'll ignore for this discussion the recent thread about when it's not 63 sectors.)

Finally, if henriette's motherboard is modern enough it should be able to see a USB flash drive if it's present at boot time.  Insert a flash drive before booting from the UBCD, and if the main HDD has no FAT/FAT32 partitions the flash drive will probably become drive C:.  Like above, you can run MbrWork from CD and save Track 0 to the flash drive as something like "c:\backups\asusmbr.bin", for instance.  (Warning: DOS is not a "plug-and-play" OS, so the flash drive must be present when DOS boots.  If it's inserted afterward, DOS won't see it.)


 
 
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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #39 - Jun 17th, 2012 at 2:52pm
 
@
henriette

Well, there you go!  We now have the 3rd of *50 ways to leave your lover*--err I mean backup to the floppy drive!

Anyone else have something to add!

 

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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #40 - Jun 17th, 2012 at 3:11pm
 
@
Dan Goodell

Dan Goodell wrote on Jun 17th, 2012 at 2:01pm:
In technical terms, the "Backup.." and "Restore First Track" options read/write to the DOS environment's CWD ("Current Working Directory").
Some Windows users may not be familiar with the concept.The CWD is the active directory--where your command prompt is sitting at the moment. 

Thank you for that explanation!  Over the years I have struggled with that issue with certain programs--but never knew there was an easy way around the problem!

For many years here, folks have complained about getting a Ghost error when booted to DOS via a bootable optical disc--and getting an error that Ghost could not write the error file!

That was because the Ghost default was to write the error file to the A: drive--unless a command line switch was used to launch Ghost that redirected the output file elsewhere--could be any available drive that DOS could see--floppy, any FAT based partition on local HDD (but not NTFS partitions), USB flash drive or external USB HDD--those had to be mounted in some way through DOS drivers or by the BIOS if that function was supported.

I'm not sure if your above technique will also over-ride the Ghost default (but, my best guess is *Yes*!).

When booted from an optical disc, the *virtual floppy drive* is a read only drive--you can not write to it--and thus the error message about not being able to write the error file by Ghost.  So, just have autoexec.bat switch to the B: drive (making it the *current working directory), and then call the Ghost program from the *virtual floppy* A: drive--have a floppy disk in the physical floppy drive and now you will get the error file saved to the floppy disk!  Sweet!  I'll have to give that a try.


 

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Dan Goodell
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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #41 - Jun 17th, 2012 at 4:30pm
 
NightOwl wrote on Jun 17th, 2012 at 3:11pm:
When booted from an optical disc, the *virtual floppy drive* is a read only drive--you can not write to it--and thus the error message about not being able to write the error file by Ghost.So, just have autoexec.bat switch to the B: drive (making it the *current working directory), and then call the Ghost program from the *virtual floppy* A: drive--have a floppy disk in the physical floppy drive and now you will get the error file saved to the floppy disk!Sweet!I'll have to give that a try.

Yes, that will work, though bear in mind it expects you to have that floppy disk in there.  If you don't, you could get other error msgs.

Here's another alternative.  I've long made my own customized bootable CDs, and a trick I use in config.sys and autoexec.bat is to initialize a ramdrive at boot time and then run as much as possible from the ramdrive.  It's faster than reading files from the CD and provides a ready place with write access for programs, but this technique is more complex to setup.

Programs can write to the ramdrive, so I don't have to worry about whether the system has a floppy drive or flash drive or writable FAT/FAT32 partition just to run some utilities or diagnostics.  OTOH, the ramdrive disappears when you shutdown, so if a program does create a record you want to save, you have to remember to copy it somewhere else before you lose it.


 
 
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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #42 - Jun 17th, 2012 at 6:58pm
 
Thanks guys. I'm a lot wiser now.

The following could suit users without a floppy drive and who don't have or can't make a DOS USB flash drive.

Download the free TBOSDT from...

http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/tbosdt.htm#download

Unzip and go to the dos_tbos folder
double click maketbos.exe
tick all the optional components
select the drive letter of your flash drive
accept USB Mode Normal

Boot from the flash drive
at the > prompt type  tbosdt  and press <Enter>
at the @C:\> prompt type  list hd 1 /u and press <Enter>

You will see the partitions on hd 1. If hd 1 isn't your primary HD then try list hd 2 /u. Or list hd 3 /u    hd 0 is the flash drive. When you have identified your HD, type (assuming your HD is 1)
copy sectors 1 0 63 mbrb and press <Enter>
1 is the HD number
0 is the starting LBA
63 is the number of sectors to copy
mbrb can be any name. It doesn't need a file extension

If your HD was 2 then the line would be
copy sectors 2 0 63 mbrb and press <Enter>

That's it. The MBR (First Track) of your HD has been backed up to the flash drive.

To restore the MBR, use list hd 1 /u (or use your HD number)  If your HD is 1 then type

copy sectors 1 0 63 mbrb /w and press <Enter>
read the confirmation text and if appropriate press Y

Now type  list hd 1 /u and press <Enter>  (or use your HD number) and you should see all your partitions.

For safety, only have your primary HD connected for the restore procedure. You don't want to put the saved MBR on the wrong HD. If you can't remember the name of your backup, look at the flash drive files in Windows. The backup is the file without an extension.
 
 
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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #43 - Jun 18th, 2012 at 8:48am
 
Hiya 

I'm ageing fast, no wiser though.

This subject is getting extremely complicated for me

I have tried
NightOwl's
'50 ways' - 2, that is (not having read the latest posts, yet.).

Quote:
you will not be able to use MBRWork from the Ultimate Boot CD--or any bootable CD from which you load MBRWork--because DOS does not support writing to optical media

True. I've tried it first, anyway, as you described it - with UBCD - to no avail.

Then I tried GHOST >> both set of 2 CD/DVD boot floppies and Ghost standard boot floppy.

Quote:
most DOS programs are *stand alone*--you don't have to start them from a boot disk

That's of great help!!! Smiley
Had created a boot floppy before - thought it had to be bootable to work ...!

> created floppy, just *MBRWORK.EXE* on it for saving *.bin(s) onto. Write protection is disabled!

> Booted with the 2-set Ghost floppies.

> After quitting Ghost I had a DOS prompt: "A:\GHOST>" (!)
Tried to change to a
clear
A:\prompt --- obviously I can't remember/find the correct command.
On the web it says e.g. "a:* would do. As far as I recall I've tried it with a ">" at the end, as well.

Whatever I tried > "bad command or file name"  Angry

> Booted with Ghost standard floppy: same result.

> Also when typing "mbrwork.exe" (still after A:\GHOST), of course, it would not load.

... "the Duck got stuck"   Roll Eyes

Can you tell me, please, what the h*** did I do wrong now ? ... just failed with the commands ?

Now, the last 3 posts are for
insiders
WOW ... myomy ...

... on the other hand: learning never ends Roll Eyes

henriette  Kiss Kiss Kiss  <one for each of you busy guys>








 

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Re: Ghost 2003, Img XP > DVD, INCOMPLETE ??
Reply #44 - Jun 18th, 2012 at 10:03am
 
@
henriette

Quote:
> After quitting Ghost I had a DOS prompt: "A:\GHOST>" (!)
Tried to change to a clearA:\prompt --- obviously I can't remember/find the correct command.

Ah--forgot where the Ghost-made boot disks leave you after quiting Ghost--those boot disks have Ghost.exe placed in a sub-directory named *Ghost*--and not in the *root directory* of the floppy disk--which is where the *mbrwork.exe* is on that dedicated floppy.

At the *A:\Ghost>* prompt, type *cd ..*--that's Change Directory, a space, and the *two periods* is the command to go up to the next level in the DOS directory tree--which in this case would be *A:\>*.  Now you should be able to type the MBRWork.exe command and get the desired results. 

(You can use the *change directory* and *two periods* without the space between, but that's not technically the best way to do it--if you actually type in the directory you're wanting to change to--if there isn't a space between the *cd* and directory name, DOS will say it's not a supported command.)

Alternatively, (yes, we're on our way to *50 ways* to load a DOS program from a floppy!), you could create a sub-directory on that *MBRWork* floppy called *Ghost* and put the *mbrwork.exe* in that sub-directory.  Now DOS will find the program because its *focus* is still on the sub-directory of *Ghost*.  Now, you don't have to shift the DOS focus to *A:\*--the *.bin* file will be in that *Ghost* sub-directory when done.

Alternatively ( Cheesy ), we could edit your autoexec.bat on your Ghost boot disk to change the DOS prompt focus back to the *A:\* once you exit Ghost.

Alternatively, ( Grin ) we could use the DOS command showing the actual path we want: *cd A:\* instead of the two period in the *change directory* command--this one makes more sense if you are several sub-directories deep in the DOS directory tree and you don't want to type *cd ..* multiple times--because it moves up only one directory at a time.

Quote:
This subject is getting extremely complicated for me.

Yes, we have gone *off the deep end* regarding more esoteric *50 ways*--but, you only need one way that works for you--the others are for those who need alternate avenues to the same end.  You can ignore all the added *fluff*!  But, sometimes those more complicated *ways* are needed for some situations.



 

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