Re: [SLE] Hard Drive Crash

From: Alex Angerhofer (
Date: 08/27/05

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    Date: Fri, 26 Aug 2005 21:04:17 -0400 (EDT)

    Hi Hilary,

    On Fri, 26 Aug 2005, Hilary Hertzoff wrote:

    > I tried this on the x86_64 list, but no one was able to help me and
    > I'm not having any luck with google - I suspect it's a terminology
    > problem.
    > I had a bad hard drive crash last weekend. KDE froze to the point that I
    > needed to do a hard reboot (the problem turned out to be a memory stick that
    > was loose).

    So, essentially, the freeze and ensuing reboot was triggered by a memory
    problem. I wouldn't call this a hard drive crash.

    > Tried to repair it using a SuSE boot disk and the repair option under
    > install. This made things worse.

    Normally, when you switch off a hard drive it will do a disk check (in
    your case reiserfsck) before it starts up again. This may take some time
    depending on how large the drive is. Still it should have come up and run
    fine afterwards. I am wondering what you did in order to "repair" the
    problem to make it worse in your opinion.

    > 2 partitions - /dev/hda1 is a linux swap and /dev/hda2 is a bootable
    > reiserfs (kicking myself now that I didn't make home a separate partition).

    What are the error messages if you try to mount and it does not succeed?

    > My current state is that if I try to boot that drive, I get a Grub error 16.
    > I can't get into Grub to edit the boot setup

    Not sure what grub error 16 really means but perhaps your MBR was trashed
    somewhere in the process. I would try to rewrite the boot loader
    information using yast from the rescue install.

    > SuSE recognizes the partitions but fails when I try mounting the partition
    > on another drive, repair using the tools under installation or update. I've
    > used a rescue cd to check the disk with fdisk and gnu-parted - they agree on
    > the partitions but gnu-parted is reporting that I have 2 TB of space used on
    > a 163GB partition.

    Did you try to repair the partition with "reiserfsck --fix-fixable"? That
    is the gentle way of approaching the problem. If that doesn't help you may
    want to try to rebuild the superblock or the tree, depending on the error
    message you get from running reiserfsck with the fix-fixable option.

    > I have no clue what to do next. Should I try resizing the partition and
    > hope it "deletes" the extra used space or is there some other way to force a
    > recheck or reindex of the partition.

    I would not try to do that. In fact depending on how important the data in
    your /home directory is, I strongly suggest to use a disk recovery tool
    like dd_rescue to build an image of the partition someplace else. You can
    then mount that image with the loopback device and try to recover your
    data. This would be the preferred way of doing things if the disk is
    really damaged. Incidentally, I am currently doing exactly this on a
    Hitachi drive that gave up on me a couple of days ago.
    dd_rescue and the very valuable dd_rhelp script can be downloaded here: . They even supply a SuSE
    binary rpm. The simplest way of using it is via dd_rhelp which is
    explained here: .

    Hope this helps.

    Best regards, Alex.

    > System Details: X86_64 on a MSI K8T Neo FIS2R motherboard. 1024kb ram now
    > properly installed and being recognized. The drive in question is made by
    > Hitachi but I don't have the details handy. However, I don't think any of
    > this should matter since the problem doesn't seem to be hardware related.

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