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Recover Data from FreeBSD lost+found

Posted on 2008-11-02
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Last Modified: 2013-12-06
Over the weekend, I had an email server RAID5 array fail. After bringing the array back online and running fsck, the entire /usr now how has 1 directory, lost+found. Inside the lost+found are hundreds of directories, of which very few contain anything. df - h still reveals /usr as having 24GB used. However most of this data does not appear to be visible. I would really like to recover these emails for my customers, but I do not know where to go from here, assuming it is even possible. I would appreciate any direction or advice.

Sample directory listing of /usr/lost+found

#05274997       #05648578       #05956413       #06287585       #06929083
#05274998       #05648580       #05956416       #06287586       #06929084

All of the directories look like this except for these 3:

Makefile
patch-ad
pkg-plist
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Question by:FusionNetworks
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by:gheist
ID: 22865273
file * */*

If /usr did not contain mail spool you can reinstall -

csup all sources to RELENG_6_3
buildworld + installworld base system

record output of pkg_info

do pkg_delete -a and pkg_add -r packages one by one

That should more or less recover content of /usr

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by:gheist
ID: 22865280
You can try installing a system aside on some working but soon-to-recommision workstation while reinstalling server with 7.0
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FusionNetworks earned 0 total points
ID: 22866589
Sorry gheist, I may not have been perfectly clear on what I needed help with. But I greatly appreciate your responses. I was trying to recover 24GB of email directories and message in /usr/local/virtual when the entire /usr slice was corrupted.

I was able to resolve this. Here is what I did.
1. Installed FreeBSD on a second drive array in the server. Which could then access the old drive array.
2. Copied the corrupted slice from the original drive array to a file on the new drive array using DD. (dd if=/dev/SOURCE of=/dev/DEST bs-8192)
3. Mounted the image file.
       mdconfig -a -t vnode -f /IMAGEFILE -u 0
       mount /dev/md0 /mnt
4. Moved the lost+found directory from the newly out of the newly mounted image file
5. Umounted the image file (umount /mnt)
6. ran fsck on the unmounted image file (fsck -t ufs -fy /IMAGEFILE)

This created a new lost+found directory. Inside of which, among other folders was a 23GB folder (#04945920) which appears to be my old /usr/local with all of the subdirectories listed. Specifically the virtual folder that contains all of my customers maildirs and emails. Upon closer inspection all maildirs and messages are intact. Woohoo!

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by:gheist
ID: 22867170
I clearly did not get the essence of your request.
Glad you fixed it.

dd conv=noerr,notrunc does go over bad blocks if you ever run into problem again

Now you noticed softupdates in action - ./local was unlinked because of excess activity below it. Let me recommend using separate system for fast changing data... (like /var)

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