[ARMedslack] File system on my Freeagent Dockstar got corrupted

Thorsten Mühlfelder thenktor at gmx.de
Fri Feb 18 08:48:38 UTC 2011


yesterday I've logged in to my Dockstar via SSH and noticed that almost all 
commands fail for various reasons (e.g. segmentation faults). I tried to 
reboot the machine, which failed, too (it never rebooted, ping was still 
available, ssh was not reachable anymore). So I had to unplug the power.
After power up the system did not boot again.
I connected the hard disk to my PC and gparted told me that the file system 
(ext4) of the root and home partitions could not be recognized. Only the ext2 
boot partition was still available.
So I did a fsck run on both partitions, which showed _a lot of_ errors. 
* the partitions could be recognized as ext4 again.
* serious data loss on the root partition, e.g. the whole etc directory was 
gone. About 1600 files in lost+found.
* nothing in lost+found of the home partition, so probably the data is ok 

But of course now I wonder what caused this serious fail:
* Did the Linux system (ARMed Slack 13.1) freeze and therefore corrupt the 
file systems?
* Did the USB connection somehow got lost/unstable?
* Did the hard disk fail and therefore freeze the system?
* Problem with ext4 on ARM (I never had problems with it on my main PC)

Sadly I could not run samrtctl on the USB disk because it says "unknown USB 
chipset" or something like that.

Did someone else ever have similiar problems? For now I've formatted the 
rootfs again with ext4 and copied the current mini-rootfs on it. At least the 
Dockstar boots again.

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