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MBR VS GPT COMPARISON

When you want to initialize a new hard disk on the computer in Disk Management, you may have to choose between two different disk styles, called GUID Partition Table (GPT) and Master Boot Record (MBR). If you are wondering which one is better for yourself, we can compare them as follows.

1.Popularity

MBR is an older standard that preceded GPT for managing partitions on hard drives. Therefore, with rapid developments, it has a much larger number of users than GPT.

2.Partition Number

MBR only allows you to create up to 4 primary partitions. If you want to create more partitions, you need to choose one of the four partitions as the external partition. And after that, you can create other logical partitions in this external partition. However, when it comes to GPT, you can create up to 128 primary partitions if you want.

3.Operating System Support

Because MBR takes longer than GPT, it can be used on almost any operating system. On the contrary, since GPT is a new technology, Windows 8 or some of the other Windows systems may support it.

Generally speaking, i BIOS only supports MBR, but UEFI supports MBR and GPT. When comparing MBR and GPT in operating system support, all operating systems can be installed on the MBR disk, that is, MBR supports all versions of all operating systems. However, on the contrary, not all Windows systems support GPT.

4.Hard Disk Capacities

Also, they have different hard drive capacities. MBR only has 2TB of storage. If the new drive is more than 2GB, you should choose GPT instead. GPT supports up to about 18EB(ExaByte) in storage capacity.

5.Safety

Apart from the above differences, there are also differences in security. When we look at the diagram, there are two GPT Headers at the beginning and after the GPT disks. This is one of the biggest differences between MBR and GPT. This difference allows a fast recovery when the main header is corrupted on GPT disks, since the backup header is at the end. It provides fast detection of problems with CRC32.

This is an outstanding advantage of GPT, whereas MBR has no such feature. When the partition table is corrupted, the MBR disk cannot be used. In this respect, GPT has a higher security than MBR disk.

Let’s examine the differences between the two as a table

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How do we know if our device is MBR or GPT?

How do we know if our device is MBR or GPT, let’s write the mmc devmgmt.msc command in the run section on the windows screen, let’s say ok.

The device manager screen will open, on this screen, let’s click on the disk drives, right click on the disk that continues, let’s say properties, let’s go to the volumes on the screen that opens, let’s fill it and check whether our disk is mbr or gpt from the Partition style section.

What is MBR (Master Boot Record)?

MBR is a disk partitioning system introduced by IBM. Originally designed to be used only with IBM systems, MBR was introduced to all computers in 1983 with PC DOS 2.0. MBR, also known as Master Boot Record, is the starting point of the hard disk. If there was no starting point such as MBR or MBR, the processor would not know what to do after the BIOS codes.

MBR is used to manage partitions. Although it is an old system, it still has the highest usage rate today. It contains the code used for the operating system to run and scan MBR partitions.

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Up to four partitions can be created on MBR disks. If you want to create more, you need to set the fourth partition as expandable. Thanks to this, you can create subpartitions. These partitions you create are limited to a maximum of 2TB.

At the beginning of the MBR is the 440 byte Master Boot Code (Bootstrap). This is the code that the BIOS looks for when it searches for a bootable device and hands over the job of booting the system if it is. The codes that exist here may be specific to operating systems. The code here can also start the operating system directly, and if there is multiple boot, it can also contain the codes of the program that will create the boot screen. When you install Ubuntu on Windows, the code here changes, it switches from Windows’ bootlader to Ubuntu’s GNU GROUP bootloader.

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The Master Boot Code is followed by a 4-byte disk signature field. The disk signature field is followed by 2 bytes of free space. This is because if the Master Boot Code does not fit in 440 bytes, the disk signature and this free space can be added to make the Master Boot Code reach 446 bytes.

What makes the MBR really important is the Master Partition Table rather than the Master Boot Code. This 64Byte table can contain only 4 Primary Partition schemas due to its size.

The MBR part is the part that is run first from the Harddisk after the BIOS check is done at the startup of the computer. Because in order to learn which operating system or other software in the disk will start, the computer must first start the process by reading this part.

In order for a computer to start correctly, to choose between operating systems and for the hard disk to work properly, the disk must have an error-free MBR partition. Since the MBR partition is a partition inside the disk, it can be affected by every move made by the user.

The MBR may become unusable as a result of an erroneous and unconscious action by the user or an MBR virus like “Stone Empire Monkey Virus”. As a result, the initial information of the disk is affected, such errors may cause the computer to fail to boot (start up) and render the disk useless.

If our computer had scanned our entire disk to find our operating system, I guess we would have enjoyed a long cup of tea in front of the black screen view after pressing the power button of our computer. Have you ever thought about how your operating system is found and processed?

Inside the MBR is a small executable assembly code (masterbootcode), disk signature and partition table.

What is GPT(GUID Partition Table)?

The next generation is the schema of the “partition table on the hard disk”. GPT (GUID Partition Table) is a new standard that tends to replace MBR. Many are faced with this new standard that comes bundled with UEFI. On GPT disks, each partition has a unique global identifier, a mark.

In this system, you will not encounter the limits of the MBR. Drives may be larger depending on the operating system and file system. There is no 2TB limit. GPT gives you almost unlimited freedom of partitioning on your disk. At this point, your operating system sets the limit and, for example, it can host 128 partitions on Windows. These partitions have no 2TB limit. It may vary according to operating systems.
For example, in Windows, your single partition can be sized as 18EB (ExaByte).

The recommended partition size should be limited to 64TB. It cannot be used as bootable on Windows. (Except Windows and new generation Linux operating systems for Itanium-based servers)

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When we look at the diagram, there are two GPT Headers at the beginning and after the GPT disks. This is one of the biggest differences between MBR and GPT. This difference allows a fast recovery when the main header is corrupted on GPT disks, since the backup header is at the end. It provides fast detection of problems with CRC32.

GPT disks are one step ahead of MBR disks. Current operating systems support UEFI, create unlimited partitions, and support a partition of more than 2TB.

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