Absolute distaster!

I have just installed Ubuntu 10.10 on my laptop but it also decided to install on my back usb hard drive and wipe years of photo’s and documents. I dont know what to do. Windows wont even recognise it on my netbook.

Ifyou told the Linux installer to format the USB drive, it will have erased the contents and formatted it as ext4 (default file system)… Windows systems cannot read ext4, so your only option would be to reformat it as NTFS/FAT32, but if this is the case, I’m afraid you have lost your data.

before formatting it again… Can you boot to Linux, connect your USB drive, then send me the output from

sudo fdisk -l

(thats SUDO FDISK -L in lower case)

This is why backups are important… specially when making file system changes… why did you leave the USB drive connected?

Hello Mark

I cant link it up to Ubuntu at the moment as it is linked to a Windows netbook. I am running ZAR 8.5 recovery software on it, it has manged to recognized the drive. It would appear that Ubuntu used my laptop drive and my usb drive to install onto.

It is not as bad as I thought as i have just found a backup on another drive but all of my pictures of my recent trip to Barcelona have gone.

Well, the windoze file recovery tool crashed after 24 hrs of trying (I’m only after one folder now). I have downloaded ‘Partition scanner and disk recovery tool’ from Ubuntu software center but I can’t find it. I am assuming it has no gui and is command line. Can anybody walk me through how to use this?


I have managed to start Testdisk from the command line but I get this…

TestDisk 6.11, Data Recovery Utility, April 2009
Christophe GRENIER [email protected]

TestDisk is free software, and

No harddisk found
You need to be root to use TestDisk.

[ Sudo ] Use the sudo command to restart as root
[ Quit ]

Good news. I have managed to retrieve my photo’s. In the end I paid £20 for ZAR 8.5 it took 24 hrs but gave me my holiday pics back. :slight_smile:

Thanks for all the help.