: Boot Sector Question


FLACer
2008-07-20, 12:16 PM
This may seem like a ridiculous or even too general question, but what could cause the boot sector of the C: drive to change?

I was informed that my boot sector had changed after running a Scan Systems Area test with AVG Free 7.5 on my Win 98 machine yesterday. Prior to this, the only changes that were made to the system by me were updating the virus definition files for AVG Free 7.5, the detection files for Spybot S&D 1.5.2.20 and upgrading Firefox to 2.0.0.16. After receiving this message, I ran a full virus scan and spyware check in safe mode and everything came up clean.

The only other thing I did prior to the above was run the LIVE CD of the latest Ubuntu release (8.04.1) the day before, but I shut that down normally and then powered the system off.

Any idea what might have caused this? I have never received a message like this before and when I clicked on it, there was no other info available. I just want to make sure it's nothing ominous lurking in the boot sector somewhere.

recneps77
2008-07-20, 12:47 PM
I had that come up often on my computer with dual boot ubuntu - it would say it every time, since the GRUB loader modified the boot to boot one OS or othe other (at least thats what I think it was...)
It's no cause for alarm, unless you're seeing strange symptoms or suspect a virus.

FLACer
2008-07-20, 12:55 PM
I had that come up often on my computer with dual boot ubuntu - it would say it every time, since the GRUB loader modified the boot to boot one OS or othe other (at least thats what I think it was...)
It's no cause for alarm, unless you're seeing strange symptoms or suspect a virus.

Thanks recneps77! Sounds logical to me. :)

I_Want_My_HDTV
2008-07-20, 04:47 PM
A number of things will change the boot sector (almost any program or bootable disc is a possible culprit.) That includes any O/S installation, such as Linux and Windows. Some viruses, worms, etc will also do it. It could also be done by security programs such as malware scanners (for boot time detection), backup/recovery programs and firewall programs, though those will usually use O/S hooks, not the boot sector. If the partition table is changed, that could also show up in the scan.

FLACer
2008-07-20, 06:40 PM
A number of things will change the boot sector (almost any program or bootable disc is a possible culprit.) That includes any O/S installation, such as Linux and Windows. Some viruses, worms, etc will also do it. It could also be done by security programs such as malware scanners (for boot time detection), backup/recovery programs and firewall programs, though those will usually use O/S hooks, not the boot sector. If the partition table is changed, that could also show up in the scan.

Thank you as well for the explanation and wealth of information I_Want_My_HDTV.