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Thread started 28 Oct 2010 (Thursday) 08:05
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Need help with some data recovery.

 
In2Photos
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Oct 28, 2010 08:05 |  #1

I need to see if anyone here knows how to get some data back from a linux based server (unRAID), but using a Windows based PC. I run an unRAID server and during a file transfer from the server to my photo PC I lost 10,000 images. I was able to recover 6000 of them from a backup I had off site, but for some reason the backup was incomplete. So here is what I am attempting before just calling this a loss.

Use a Windows 7 PC.
Use a USB docking station attached to the Windows 7 PC.
Need some sort of drivers and/or software to view the linux based drive on the Windows 7 machine and recover the data.

I have SanDisk's Rescue Pro, but not sure if that will work for the linux based drives.


Mike, The Keeper of the Archive

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mkel2000
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Nov 01, 2010 22:16 |  #2

Mike,

If the Linux OS data pointing to the file locations is gone, you will most likely need forensic software to attempt to recover the images. The problem is in the way files are written to the disk. I'm not a Linux expert, but with Windows file systems, parts of the file are written to different parts of the disk and the file system tracks were these file pieces are at in order to pull the data and reconstruct the files when you ask for it. If the Linux OS you are using writes the data to contiguous sectors on the drive, then it would be pretty straight forward to carve the data from unallocated space and recover the files. However, I suspect that Linux puts pieces of the files all over the drive and without the OS knowing where that data is, recovery of complete files is going to be difficult. Hence, the need for forensic software to possibly recover the data. What makes the RescuePro software effective is that data on memory cards is written to contiguous sectors so all you need to know is the header and footer for the file type to recover "deleted" data from that kind of media.

My recommendation would be to limit access to the Linux system and see if you can find someone who specializes in data recovery to give you an estimate on recovering the data. Any access to the drive makes changes and is likely overwriting data that you're trying to recover. I would not attach the drive to a Windows computer unless you really know what you're doing since you could cause more problems than you hope to solve.

All that said, I'm curious whether you were doing a copy and paste or a move of the data? A copy and paste operation, even if it fails, should leave the original data intact unless there is an underlying problem to the Linux file system.

Mark




  
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In2Photos
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Nov 02, 2010 07:05 as a reply to  @ mkel2000's post |  #3

Thanks for the reply Mark!

All of the data was moved from the linux server from within Lightroom. For reasons unknown, not all was moved to the new drive, but all was deleted from the old drive. I will no longer use Lightroom to move large amounts of data like this again and will instead use something like Teracopy to copy and verify before deleting.

I have been able to recover some of the data by using the rebuild tree command from the linux console. It is a long winded process as folders are often renamed as are some files. I've gone through the folders and fixed everything I could from there, but now I am sorting through all of the individual files by date and trying to compare them to the Lightroom database. It is a tedious task, but I have learned a valuable lesson, the hard way!


Mike, The Keeper of the Archive

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mkel2000
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Nov 02, 2010 16:18 as a reply to  @ In2Photos's post |  #4

You're welcome. :)

Glad to hear that you were able to recover some of the data. Sounds like the rebuild tree function gives a similar capability to the Windows Recycle Bin since there is still a file record available somewhere in the system.

I poked around LR a little to see if I could see any settings that would have caused your situation and I didn't. It sounds like you're plan to not use LR to copy data in the future is wise. I would, however, keep an eye on your Linux box since you may be seeing early signs of hardware failure or some kind of file system issue.

Mark




  
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In2Photos
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Nov 03, 2010 07:57 as a reply to  @ mkel2000's post |  #5

Unfortunately the rebuild tree function is nothing like the Recylcle Bin in terms of ease of use. While the files were recoverable, they are in no easy order to replace. I've spent about 5 hours just wading through the folders portion and still have 3+ years of individual files to sort through!

I will keep an eye on both items to see how they are working. The linux server (unRAID) has a parity drive so if I have a drive failing data should be fine (key word should!), but there will be additional backups as well.


Mike, The Keeper of the Archive

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mjmackinnon
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Nov 06, 2010 20:38 as a reply to  @ In2Photos's post |  #6

have you looked at hirens boot cd? do a google search.. there are a whole whack of utilities on there that might be able to help you out.

Matt.


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Need help with some data recovery.
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