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Old 09-03-2005, 08:01 AM   #1
morrolan
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Unhappy Recovering an ext3 Partition?


Hi,

I'm not a linux newbie after using it for a couple of years, but I have just made such a noob mistake you wouldn't believe (No offense meant new people - keep it up!)

I was running Fedora Core 3 dual booting via Grub with WinXP on my Toshiba laptop, and after a problem with Fedora that I'd not been able to fix, I decided to reinstall it.

I backed up everything I wanted (mainly /home and /etc for a couple of customisations I'd made) and had the .tgz files sat in a shared folder at /home/share. I then proceeded to use Partition Magic 8 in Windows to wipe the linux partition, and resized the windows partition to fill the drive.

I then rebooted, knowing that I wouldn't be able to get back into windows, but I'd already backed my windows partition up, and I was planning on completely formatting the drive and starting again.

Then - I suddenly realised. I hadn't copied the backups over to my external HDD first. (Laugh all you want, I probably deserve it)


My question is this - Is the linux partition recoverable? I believe it was ext3. All I want to be able to do copy the backup files (about 1.2Gb) and then I don't care what happens after that.

I have not booted back into windows, only to Knoppix, so nothing has been changed since Partition Magic wiped the ext3 and swap and resized the NTFS partition.


Many thanks in advance,

Last edited by morrolan; 09-03-2005 at 08:04 AM.
 
Old 09-03-2005, 08:23 AM   #2
SlackerLX
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http://www.stellarinfo.com/linux-data-recovery.htm
http://www.ptdd.com/
G'luck
 
Old 09-03-2005, 08:31 AM   #3
syg00
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testdisk has worked for everone I've recommended it to on fora like this. Seems to save eveyone from their own cock-ups

Should be on your Knoppix I think.
 
Old 09-03-2005, 02:59 PM   #4
morrolan
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I'm going through testdisk at the moment, scanning all cylinders for lost partitions. It's still only finding the NTFS partition so far.

My biggest worry is:

The TestDisk documentation doesn't mention anything about LVM volumes. How do LVM's work when it comes to the partition table? Are they just recognised initially as Logical drives within an extended partition?

Also, the fact that I resized the NTFS partition should only be reflected in the partition table if I'm correct? So the search should find the beginning of the each partition (hopefully) and then let me rewrite the partition table?

Also, if I resize the partition table, will it mess up my NTFS partition?

Sorry for all the questions, but I'm worried about losing a 40 page bash script I've been working on for 3 months!

Many Thanks,
 
Old 09-03-2005, 07:59 PM   #5
syg00
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Dunno about LVM - never bothered looking at it. But I believe it's (predominantly) userspace code abstracting the disks.
And they're presumably partitioned as normal.

As for partitons, they're just another level of abstraction. The partition table entry basically says where they start, how big (in sectors) and what type.
You should be fine.

Just re-read your post re not finding the partition. Testdisk relies on patterns to pick the potential partition boundary(s) - what does the following mean ???
Quote:
I then proceeded to use Partition Magic 8 in Windows to wipe the linux partition
If you got truly enthusiastic and "wiped", as opposed to "deleted", I'd say you are history. Don't know if PM makes the distrinction, but if it does ...

Man, I just bet you are more sensible with backups in future - this sort of thing makes people *much* more aware of how valuable their data/time is, and why some of us keep banging on about backups.
 
Old 09-05-2005, 11:53 AM   #6
morrolan
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What I meant by:

Quote:
I then proceeded to use Partition Magic 8 in Windows to wipe the linux partition
Is that after deleting the partitions, I then resized the NTFS partition to encompass the entire drive...

So far, testdisk has not found anything except some old /home partitions from before Fedora 3, and before I started using LVM, but everytime I try and obtain a file list from these I get a segfault.

I've searched the cylinders for Primary and Deleted partitions but so far it has only found partitions from very old partitioning structures.

The other problem is, Fedora ( and I believe 2.6 kernel) "breaks" the partition table in that it doesn't write it properly, so I keep getting "Bad Ending Head" and various other messages I can't remember whilst I'm in work meant to be working. (I can add them later once I get home).

I'm a pauper too, so I'm trying to do this without having to payout for software, and without invalidating my laptop warranty by removing the drive to be sent to an expert.
 
  


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