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Old 09-21-2006, 01:04 PM   #1
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chown -R results in Input./Output error (ubuntu Dapper Drake)


Thinking I am doing something smart, I recursively changed the group of one directory_name (with many subfolders) on my removable drive:
chown -R my_login_name:users directory_name
Previously the ownership was login_name:login_name

Well, I have a big problem now. I can not access folders, they have unknown size, ownership, group, date, etc. If I try to do anything, I get an Input/Output error.

Help! Is there a way to reverse/undo the damage?

Thanks for any hints

Old 09-21-2006, 04:34 PM   #2
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"chown -R login_name:login_name" should reverse this.
Old 09-21-2006, 04:52 PM   #3
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Thank you for your advice. Well, I tried exactly that:

chown -R login_name:login_name

It appears that the directory structure was succesfully recovered, as well as some of the files. I can not see any pattern why some files reappeared and the others didn't.

Any suggestions, anyone?


Old 09-21-2006, 05:22 PM   #4
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problem solved

I was hoping that maybe rebooting the machine would force some kind of 'fix-the-corrupt-files' action. And it did. At this point I do not know if the previous step (to change back with chown -R login_name:login_name) was necessary or not.
Initially I was afraid to unmount the external disk or to log off, but then I rebooted out of desperation. And it worked - everything is back, all the files.

Needless to say, lesson learned.

Thanks for helping,



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