A highly reliable, low overhead method for determining a rotational position of a magnetic storage medium that is divided into a plurality of servo sections is provided. The inventive method includes defining a predetermined bit pattern that corresponds to a known position of the magnetic storage medium. A rotational position indicator bit is associated with each servo sector such that a known bit of the predetermined bit pattern is associated with the known position of the magnetic storage medium. A current rotational position indicator bit is read from the magnetic storage medium and a rotational position bit sequence comprising the current rotational position indicator bit is formed. The rotational position bit sequence is compared with the predetermined bit pattern and, based on the comparison, whether the rotational position of the magnetic medium is the known rotational position can be determined.