Saturday, October 24, 2009

System Recovery Using Linux

Recently, oe of our laptops failed.  It was slowly getting worse and worse.  We had to recover the files, but the installed windows OS wasn't operational any more.  I have run into a SystemRescueCD. It's an open project, that provides a set of rescue-oriented tools, togather with the basic linux system on a bootable CD or USB.

Here's how I have done the retrieval of the files:
  • Mount the windows harddisk:
    mkdir /mnt/sjb/windows
    ntfs-g3 /dev/sda1 /mnt/sjb/windows
  • Mount the USB to copy the files onto:
    mkdir /mnt/sjb/usb
    mount -t vfat /dev/sdb1 /mnt/sjb/usb (vfat is an extension of fat16)
I have also used an external harddisk connected via USB to copy a larger amount of data from the laptop's harddisk.  To find which device name I should point to to mount it (like /dev/sda1), I have used the testdisk utility available on the CD.

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