MBR partitions

The most common partitioning scheme for x86 and x86-64 computers is MBR (Master Boot Record). This method stores its data in the first sector of the disk, called the Master Boot Record. Assuming 512-byte sectors, MBR partitions can’t support disks larger than 2 TB.

MBR supports three types of partitions:

  • primary – the simplest type of partition. A disk can have zero to four primary partitions, one of which may be an extended partition.
  • extended – a special type of primary partition that serves as a placeholder for logical partitions. A disk may have at most one extended partition.
  • logical – partitions that reside within an extended partition.


Primary partitions are numbered from 1–4, whereas logical partitions are numbered 5 and up.
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