<SOLVED> Cannot see my partitions anymore

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benoitsmith
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<SOLVED> Cannot see my partitions anymore

Post by benoitsmith » Wed Sep 11, 2019 6:37 am

Greetings,

My problems began when I was brought to reinstall my Linux Mint Tara environment - but using a Tina bootable USB drive, which brought me to choose the UEFI boot mode, which I'd never done before.

My hard drive has four partitions /sda1 pour / (ext5), /sda2 for /home (ext4), /sda4 for storing my numerous documents (ext4), et /sda5 (swap).

To add an EFI system partition, I tried to split my /sda1 in two, using the Disks utility. But somehow, resizing that partition gave an error message.

Without investigating the incident further, I chose to create a Tara bootable USB drive to reinstall my initial environment (which, obviously, I should have done in the first place). And then, the Horror came down to me.

The Disks utility gives me zero partitions - my whole hard drive is shown as an empty space.

I rebooted with a LM Rebecca Live-CD I keep - to the same result.

I do know I only manipulated the /sda1 partition. All of my data in the other partitions should be intact. So, why can't I see anything? How could I restore the partitions (or, at least, recover the data)?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Last edited by benoitsmith on Mon Sep 16, 2019 6:46 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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pbear
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Re: Cannot see my partitions anymore

Post by pbear » Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:44 pm

Sounds like you deleted the partition table. There are tools for data recovery but others will have to help you with that. I'm conscientious about backups, so I've never had to learn about data recovery. First, though, let's confirm the problem.

Boot a live session with Tara or Tina (doesn't matter which). Open Terminal and click to expand to full screen. Run these two commands, one line at a time, using copy-and-paste. Copy the outputs (including the line with the command itself) and post into your next reply. Please enclose the outputs in code tags (the </> button above the text entry box), using a separate code box for each output.

Code: Select all

inxi -Fxz
sudo parted -l
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If your problem has been solved, please edit the thread title.

rene
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Re: Cannot see my partitions anymore

Post by rene » Wed Sep 11, 2019 1:25 pm

Just a quick suggestion before I have to run, TestDisk can find and restore deleted partition table entries. You can install it from a Mint Live DVD/USB boot (sudo apt-get install testdisk); IIRC it was mostly self-explanatory.

Be VERY careful you don't use a GUI application that initializes a new partition table entry and helpfully immediately formats the as far as it is concerned just created partition....

benoitsmith
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Re: Cannot see my partitions anymore

Post by benoitsmith » Mon Sep 16, 2019 6:45 pm

Thank you all!

It was a somewhat long process to use testdisk efficiently (and keep in mind some basic techniques such as copying directories without all those deleted files... :roll: ), but I was eventually able to recover all of my personal data and reinstall a new, clean, functional partition table.

Best regards!

rene
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Re: <SOLVED> Cannot see my partitions anymore

Post by rene » Mon Sep 16, 2019 7:32 pm

That sounds like you didn't in fact use testdisk to restore the partition table, but used it to directly restore files. Very good things worked out... but you could possibly have saved yourself quite a bit of time and effort if indeed only the partition table was overwritten.

benoitsmith
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Re: <SOLVED> Cannot see my partitions anymore

Post by benoitsmith » Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:57 am

You must be right. The thing is, I had become so afraid to mess up my partitions and data further (with my lack of experience of that tool) that I chose the long, "rebuild all" way.

rene
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Re: <SOLVED> Cannot see my partitions anymore

Post by rene » Tue Sep 17, 2019 6:00 am

Fair enough :)

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