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Re: a cautionary tale w/ successful recovery

On Sun, Nov 01, 2009 at 07:20:23PM -0500, Rob Owens wrote:
> On Sun, Nov 01, 2009 at 02:57:49PM -0800, Andrew Sackville-West wrote:
> > Hi all, mildly off-topic, perhaps.
> > 
> > Due to a cascading series of errors on my part yesterday, I managed to
> > not only wipe over my partition table, but also overwrite enough data
> > in the actual disk to prevent reasonable recovery of the partitions
> > with such tools as gpart. 
> > 
> > I could recover /boot, and /swap, but the lvm-hosted remaining portion
> > of the system was hosed, mostly because I couldn't accurately locate
> > the partition. Maybe if I'd been a little smarter about it, I could
> > have, but I didn't know, until too late, what exactly to look for. So,
> > after much gnashing of teeth and rending of clothing, I decided to
> > reinstall.


> A couple good utilites I've used in situations like these are testdisk
> and photorec.  Photorec can recover files even if there is no partition
> table (it won't know the filename, but it will tell you the file type).

to be clear, I was able to see portions of file systems and actually
found all of / using gnu-fdisk's "Rescue" feature. I was able to mount
and fsck it and it checked out okay. But that fs was buried in an lvm
partition *and* it couldn't find other filesystems. Since I run
multiple lv's in lv to hold the system, it wasn't much use... having /
without /usr and /var is not really that great. 

gpart found /boot and /swap(not much use), but /boot was corrupted pretty
badly. It did *not* find anything in the lvm partition, though I got
tired of waiting for it, so maybe it would have eventually.

This has caused me to rethink the use of lvm on this system. Although
I like the flexibility, I'm not so sure it's not just better to use
one large partition for everything. 

What I discovered is that though it might have been possible to
recover, it was certainly easier and ultimately less stressful to just
reinstall and restore from backup.


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