BOOTSECT.BAK

Posted: 07-10-2007, 12:12 PM
Hi!

I've read what I can see about this BOOTSECT.BAK file but I really can't
understand why it's there on my root drive. I've formatted the whole drive
from the recovery console on XP, deleted all partitions and still Vista is
making a backup of something that shouldn't be there. I know I can delete it
apparently, but that's not the point here it's why the file exists when there
is no trace of a previous Windows installation on the system.

I also noticed the Vista format in it's command box on installation from
boot-up has a new command that apparently 0's your HD. Is this correct and
will this stop BOOTSECT.BAK appearing on Vista installs? Thanks!

BOOTSECT.BAK


Responses to "BOOTSECT.BAK"

AJR
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
Re: BOOTSECT.BAK
Posted: 07-10-2007, 06:24 PM
First have no idea what "...Vista is making a backup of something that
shouldn't be there...." means or to what you are referring

Bootsect.bak is a required file for functioning of the boot.ini file - the
boot manager for XP and previous Windows versions, which Vista, depending
on the installatiom, will look for prior to using its boot manager
EDITStore. Again depending on the installation Vusta installs the files in
the active partition (Usually root drive)

"xeriouxi" <xeriouxi@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:20B74236-902E-4E0A-AA3D-DD2461478C85@microsoft.com...
> Hi!
>
> I've read what I can see about this BOOTSECT.BAK file but I really can't
> understand why it's there on my root drive. I've formatted the whole drive
> from the recovery console on XP, deleted all partitions and still Vista is
> making a backup of something that shouldn't be there. I know I can delete
> it
> apparently, but that's not the point here it's why the file exists when
> there
> is no trace of a previous Windows installation on the system.
>
> I also noticed the Vista format in it's command box on installation from
> boot-up has a new command that apparently 0's your HD. Is this correct and
> will this stop BOOTSECT.BAK appearing on Vista installs? Thanks!

xeriouxi
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
Re: BOOTSECT.BAK
Posted: 07-10-2007, 06:50 PM
Well if I've formatted the whole drive etc. then the previous XP stuff
shouldn't be there, should it? Hence nothing to make a backup of...

"AJR" wrote:
> First have no idea what "...Vista is making a backup of something that
> shouldn't be there...." means or to what you are referring
>
> Bootsect.bak is a required file for functioning of the boot.ini file - the
> boot manager for XP and previous Windows versions, which Vista, depending
> on the installatiom, will look for prior to using its boot manager
> EDITStore. Again depending on the installation Vusta installs the files in
> the active partition (Usually root drive)
>
> "xeriouxi" <xeriouxi@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
> news:20B74236-902E-4E0A-AA3D-DD2461478C85@microsoft.com...
> > Hi!
> >
> > I've read what I can see about this BOOTSECT.BAK file but I really can't
> > understand why it's there on my root drive. I've formatted the whole drive
> > from the recovery console on XP, deleted all partitions and still Vista is
> > making a backup of something that shouldn't be there. I know I can delete
> > it
> > apparently, but that's not the point here it's why the file exists when
> > there
> > is no trace of a previous Windows installation on the system.
> >
> > I also noticed the Vista format in it's command box on installation from
> > boot-up has a new command that apparently 0's your HD. Is this correct and
> > will this stop BOOTSECT.BAK appearing on Vista installs? Thanks!
>
>
>
cquirke (MVP Windows shell/user)
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
Re: BOOTSECT.BAK
Posted: 07-11-2007, 06:16 PM
On Tue, 10 Jul 2007 11:50:00 -0700, xeriouxi
>Well if I've formatted the whole drive etc. then the previous XP stuff
>shouldn't be there, should it? Hence nothing to make a backup of...
Oh, OK; I think I see what you mean.

My guess is that Bootsect.bak is a copy of whatever was in the PBR
(Partition Boot Record, or more accurately in this context, just the
first sector of this) at the time that etc.

Firstly, there will always be something in that sector, whether it be
zeros or disk-probe "divide-by sign" characters. The install process
that creates the .BAK can't know whether these contents matter, so it
prolly makes the backup irrespective of what was there.

Secondly, while PBR is part of the OS, it may not be wiped by a Format
(in fact, the Format will most likely re-create it) and it may also be
(provisionally) created by partitioning tools even without a format.

Win9x used to do the same thing, tho the file was called something
else. Virus scanners would sometimes "catch" boot code malware in
there, where the Win9x install has backed up such code into the file
before splatting down the OS's new boot code.

PBR boot code is very OS-specific, and differs between Win9x (where
IO.SYS is the first file to load) and NT (where NTLDR is the first
file to load, and may be on NTFS).

So in the context of installing an NT OS over (or as an upgrade to) an
existing Win9x, it's necessary to back up whatever PBR was there.


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