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Old 10-05-2007, 02:24 AM   #1
PeterHK
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Registered: Oct 2007
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External WD500 (ext2 or ext3, Suse 10.2) 'no longer formatted' after hard reset


Hi there. Hope someone can help me.

I have a problem with an external harddisk, a USB MyBook WD500.

Here's the setup of my system (a bit messy but I like to experiment and I usually don't have enough time to clean up after myself, bad programmer's habbit).

-internal HD: WinXP professional
-second interal HD: Suse Linux 10.2
-external WD500 (formatted as ext2 or ext3, I'm not sure), also Suse Linux 10.2

There's a GRUB boot menu allowing me to boot these 3 OS. This means the WD500 external HD has to be connected and online to be able to boot GRUB (= to be able to boot at all), a bit clumsy but OK, the system works.

I access the WD500 ext2/3 disk from WinXP using an ISF driver, works perfectly...

until this morning...

Half asleep, I booted the external HD's Linux. Then I realised I actually wanted to boot WinXP to do some stuff there. Then I did the most stupid thing one can do (but hey, I was half asleep), I hit the RESET button...

-PC restarted properly, I started WinXP this time. Then I tried to access the WD500 external HD, but some folders were 'unavailable' or 'damaged' according to WinXP.

-Then I started Linux from the second internal HD. Same thing happened, this time the folders that WinXP says are 'damaged' simply did not appear.

-Then I restarted WinXP and tried to access the external HD, but this time WinXP told me the HD isn't even formatted...

-There was no time (meetings at work...) to reboot and start Linux from the external HD (which is what I should have done in the first place I guess)...

Does anyone know what went wrong here? I guess me hitting the RESET button caused the ext2/3 filesystem to become corrupted?

Is there anything I can do about this? Some Linux tool that rebuilds the FAT-tables or file system tables or whatever got damaged?

Thank you for your help, much appreciated!

Last edited by PeterHK; 10-05-2007 at 02:26 AM.
 
Old 10-05-2007, 10:33 AM   #2
MS3FGX
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Registered: Jan 2004
Location: NJ, USA
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It depends on the filesystem you used.

EXT2 is not a journalizing filesystem, so if you turned the drive off while it was being accessed, there is a good chance that the data is beyond recovery. EXT3 is much better at recovery, and you will probably be alright in that case.

To check the drive you will need to start Linux (from the internal drive) and run fsck on the external. This will go through and repair any filesystem damage it can. In most cases you should have a usable volume after that, but there is no guarantee there at all.
 
Old 10-05-2007, 03:49 PM   #3
PeterHK
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Registered: Oct 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MS3FGX View Post
It depends on the filesystem you used.

EXT2 is not a journalizing filesystem, so if you turned the drive off while it was being accessed, there is a good chance that the data is beyond recovery. EXT3 is much better at recovery, and you will probably be alright in that case.

To check the drive you will need to start Linux (from the internal drive) and run fsck on the external. This will go through and repair any filesystem damage it can. In most cases you should have a usable volume after that, but there is no guarantee there at all.
Thank you for the reply !!!

The funniest thing happened. I got home after work and booted Linux from the external HD. Got a kernel panic. ...

Then I rebooted WinXP and ... all was fine... all files seemed to be back where they were before...

(oh yea and the filesystem was ext3)
 
  


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