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NewsForge: Recovering Linux Files and Filesystems

Oct 15, 2003, 13:00 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Roderick W. Smith)

"A common nightmare among computer users is losing data due to filesystem corruption. This can happen because of errors introduced during a system crash, filesystem driver bugs (particularly when using non-Linux drivers to access Linux partitions), human error involving low-level disk utilities, or other factors. All Linux filesystems include disk-check tools, but they differ in many details.

"Most filesystems provide utilities that scan the filesystem's contents for internal consistency. This tool can detect, and often correct, errors such as mangled directories, bad time stamps, inodes that point to the wrong part of the disk, and so on. In Linux, the fsck utility serves as a front-end to filesystem-specific checking tools, which usually have names of the form fsck.filesystem, where filesystem is the filesystem name, such as jfs or ext2. If you need to check a filesystem manually, you can either call fsck, which then calls the filesystem-specific utility; or you can call the filesystem-specific program directly..."

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