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  • New hard drive gone bad

    Home Forums AskWoody support PC hardware New hard drive gone bad

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      • #2364153
        MrJimPhelps
        AskWoody MVP

        Yesterday I installed a new 4TB hard drive in my computer, to replace my 1TB data drive. OS is Linux Mint 18.2 xfce.

        I connected the drive, but I couldn’t see it in Mint, so I went into the Setup screen, and it was listed there, so I knew that the computer was seeing the drive, but Mint wasn’t.

        I went back into Mint, ran GPARTED, and formatted the drive. It was then partitioned into four small partitions! That wasn’t what I wanted, so I then partitioned the drive into one big partition, then formatted it.

        All appeared to be good, so I began moving my data from the old drive to the new. The move appeared to be hung at one point, so I stopped and restarted it. It hung again quickly after that, so I closed everything and restarted the computer, and tried to resume the move, but now I can’t mount the new drive!

        I ran GPARTED to look at the partitions, and it saw the one big partition on the drive. I then ran GPART to try to recover the data, and it is still running, about 12 hours later. (I guess it is running; there is no status bar showing, only the grayed-out “OK” button that I clicked to start the process.)

        Can anyone assist? I will lose a whole lot of my data if I can’t fix this. (Yes, yes, I know, I should have backed it up!)

        Thanks!

        Group "L" (Linux Mint)
        with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
      • #2364206
        Microfix
        AskWoody MVP

        I certainly would not be using 18.x series of Linux Mint at all after Clem’s warnings last month.
        https://blog.linuxmint.com/?p=4054
        Can’t help with an EoS gparted (don’t use it) but thought you should at least know!

        | Quality over Quantity |
        • #2364410
          MrJimPhelps
          AskWoody MVP

          I was planning on going to the latest Mint, once I got all of my files moved from the old 1TB data drive to my new 4TB data drive. I was going to install it on the 1TB drive that got freed up when I moved the data to the 4TB drive.

          I’ll likely still do that, if I can ever get my data successfully recovered and moved. But I may go to Ubuntu rather than Mint (see my next comment). Or I may go to Windows 10 instead. I’ve had excellent results with Windows 10, and so I am thinking a lot about going in that direction with the new OS install.

          Regardless of which OS I choose, I’m strongly considering putting the new 4TB drive into a Windows computer and partitioning/formatting it using Windows rather than Linux. I think the partition will be more reliable, particularly since I want to go with NTFS. In fact, that may be the source of all these problems – I partitioned the drive as NTFS using Linux Mint rather than Windows to do the partitioning.

          Group "L" (Linux Mint)
          with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
          • #2364442
            Microfix
            AskWoody MVP

            So it’s not the ‘New hard drive gone bad‘ either, as per this thread title within the PC hardware section is it?
            So it would seem planning failed before the first hurdle from the so called ‘Linux Expert’

            | Quality over Quantity |
            • #2364828
              MrJimPhelps
              AskWoody MVP

              First of all, it appeared that the drive had actually gone bad, hence the title of the thread. I’ve been doing this sort of thing for decades, so I have a pretty good sense for it.
              Secondly, I don’t present myself as a ‘Linux Expert’, but more of a ‘Linux Helper’. I’ve learned a lot on my Linux journey, and I’m glad to share my knowledge with those just getting started.

              Group "L" (Linux Mint)
              with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
          • #2364458
            Ascaris
            AskWoody MVP

            If you initially formatted the drive as MBR, that could be why it ended up formatted as four 1TB partitions (or at least why it was not formatted as one large partition). MBR has a nominal limit of ~2 TB per primary partition, with up to 4 primary partitions total. Something may have gone wrong in that switchover somewhere. Is the disk listed as GPT from Gparted, and does the PC have BIOS or UEFI? BIOS can’t normally boot from GPT, but it can work in Linux with a little “trick,” though I have never used that.

            Why do you want to use NTFS if the OS is Linux? NTFS does not support the permissions system in Linux, with the Windows system being incompatible with that of Linux, so the security of having specific file or directory ownership and permissions does not exist on NTFS within Linux. If you need to have a common format that both OSes can read, you can get by with NTFS, but it’s best to keep it as a data volume and let the “important” stuff (as far as running the OS is concerned) on a native Linux type. You didn’t mention this system being a dual boot, so Ext4 (the default Linux filesystem type) would be a much better fit.

            Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.0 User Edition)

            • #2364841
              MrJimPhelps
              AskWoody MVP

              In my house there are one Linux machine and three Windows machines. The reason I went with NTFS is so that the drive would be readable/writeable from each machine.

              I’m not so worried about permissions – no one logs in with a specific user account at my house.

              It is interesting what you said about setting up the drive as ext4, then using NTFS only for the shared part of the drive. I ended up putting the drive into one of my Windows computers, which allowed me to copy off the data that had gotten moved to the drive before I partitioned/formatted it. (I couldn’t mount the drive in Linux.) I then removed/recreated the partition and formatted it in Windows – my thought there was that since I was going with NTFS, I should set the drive up in Windows, not Linux, since NTFS is a Windows-type format.

              I reinstalled the drive in my Linux computer, and I can see it, but I can’t write to it – it’s as if it is stuck in read-only mode. I have read about others having that exact same issue, so I am researching it further. I’m sure I’ll be able to fix this; but if I can’t, I am seriously considering going with Windows 10 rather than Linux, because I would never see this sort of issue with Windows. With Linux, it’s one issue after another; with Windows, it is smooth sailing. (I say that from personal experience, not from reading the words of others.)

              Group "L" (Linux Mint)
              with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
              • #2364881
                Ascaris
                AskWoody MVP

                In my house there are one Linux machine and three Windows machines. The reason I went with NTFS is so that the drive would be readable/writeable from each machine.

                You plan to keep removing the drive and installing it in other PCs?

                I’m not so worried about permissions – no one logs in with a specific user account at my house.

                It’s a security issue too. Operating system files are typically owned by root, while your user data files are owned by whatever your user name is. You don’t want any old process to have access to operating system files, and it is the permission system (fortified by AppArmor) that prevents this.

                When you mount an NTFS drive, I believe Linux considers every file on that drive to be owned by the account that mounted it. If it was mounted by root, all files are owned by root, which could be related what is happening with your drive. I don’t think the root ownership automatically prevents write access on NTFS volumes, though, as it would (and should) on any Linux volume, but if those files were copied to a Linux volume, it would carry over the root ownership, and it could cause big problems trying to access them from the user account. If you elevate to superuser, you will be able to access them again.

                This sounds somewhat similar to what happened to you.

                I reinstalled the drive in my Linux computer, and I can see it, but I can’t write to it – it’s as if it is stuck in read-only mode. I have read about others having that exact same issue, so I am researching it further.

                In addition to the stuff in the paragraph above regarding root owning the files, Linux will also mount NTFS volumes as ro (read only) if Windows accessed them in “fast boot” mode, or if the dirty bit has been set, indicating that Windows flagged something as being wrong with the file system. This read only mounting is done to protect the data (quite a contrast to how Windows behaves with foreign file systems, where it essentially considers them unallocated space).

                I’m sure I’ll be able to fix this; but if I can’t, I am seriously considering going with Windows 10 rather than Linux, because I would never see this sort of issue with Windows.

                I am sure it will be fixed.

                You have not seen these kinds of issues with Windows, but that does not mean you would never see them. I certainly have! If you were using Linux filesystems and networking protocols from within Windows, using whichever programs were required to make that happen, the odds of problems like this would increase greatly.

                With Linux, it’s one issue after another; with Windows, it is smooth sailing. (I say that from personal experience, not from reading the words of others.)

                Again, these particular problems were caused because you’re trying to accommodate Windows on a Linux machine. It can be done, but you have to understand the limitations.

                When it comes to things like networking, I’ve had just as much difficulty in actual Windows as in Linux when using Samba. I’d go as far as to say it was actually worse in Windows in some ways.

                Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.0 User Edition)

              • #2364882
                MrJimPhelps
                AskWoody MVP

                My intention is to mount the drive in my Linux machine as the data drive, and then share it to the Windows machines, so that they too can use it as their data drive. In other words, it will stay in the Linux machine.

                If I format it as ext4, will I be able to read from it and write to it from the Windows machines (and from my Windows 8.1 VM on the Linux machine)? If so, then I will format it as ext4 and be done with it. But I fear that I won’t be able to read from it and write to it from the Windows machines, and that’s why I formatted it as NTFS.

                Group "L" (Linux Mint)
                with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
              • #2364890
                Ascaris
                AskWoody MVP

                I see! You are in luck, as the share from an Ext4 Linux PC will be usable from Windows. The file system is abstracted at that point… Windows is mounting the share (SMB/CIFS), not the volume (Ext4).

                There is also the option I keep mentioning, KDE Connect. It works with Xfce too, and there is a Windows version also. I have shared files successfully between my Windows 10 on my G3 and a Linux PC, no problem. It also works with Android devices, and it can do a lot more than file sharing if you wish.

                Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.0 User Edition)

              • #2364999
                MrJimPhelps
                AskWoody MVP

                I found a wonderful program called “Disks” (command is “gnome-disks”) that comes with Mint 20.1 xcfe (and maybe with earlier versions of Mint as well). This is an indispensable program which lists all of your drives and tells you the name Mint is using for each (e.g. /dev/sdb1), as well as the size of the drive and the volume name you have assigned it. When you’re running a program like GPARTED, you need all of that information to make sure you are dealing with the correct drive.

                I’m using Disks to reformat the drive as ext4. Looks like it will take a good while, because I chose the “erase” option. (I could have erased it a lot quicker after the fact, I’m sure.) Once it is all done, and I’ve shared the drive on my home network, I’ll post back here to let everyone know how successful it all was.

                Group "L" (Linux Mint)
                with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
              • #2365053
                DrBonzo
                AskWoody Plus

                I have Disks on my Mint 19.2 Cinnamon computers.

              • #2366556
                MrJimPhelps
                AskWoody MVP

                You are correct – the drive is now formatted as ext4, and it is usable as a shared network drive from the other computers on my network; they are all Windows, but it doesn’t matter, because the drive is not physically in any of those computers, but rather is available via the network connection.

                Group "L" (Linux Mint)
                with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
        • #2364872
          MrJimPhelps
          AskWoody MVP

          I didn’t know that Clem had warned us last month about Mint 18.x. Thanks for the tip.

          I read Clem’s post, and the only warning I could find was that 18.x was at EOL and therefore wouldn’t be receiving any more security updates. Perhaps he gave some warnings in the comments.

          The reason I was using 18.1 in that setting was because it was installed on another hard drive in that same computer, so it was available for use. I’ve had good luck with 18.1, but not so good with newer versions, and so that’s why I have stuck with it all this time. But I’ve begun to have lockups, and so I decided to take the plunge and go for the newest version of Mint.

          Group "L" (Linux Mint)
          with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
      • #2364397
        anonymous
        Guest

        Part of the reason I tried Mint for a while and haven’t returned.  It’s really not too good.  If you want to stay with Ububtu derivatives, try xfce Ububtu, it runs really well and is essentially the same as Mint xfce with much better support for Nvidia cards.  Ubuntu has good drive support, partitioning is done during install (or whenever you want), no utilities needed.  I use Ubuntu for our home server (awful gnome desktop but it’s hardly ever used locally, mostly via. Putty or Cockpit).

        Currently, I use Ubuntu Studio (xfce) and love it.  Runs fine on an old middling laptop, kinda surprised.  It’s going to Plasma as default next version, think I’ll stay xfce, I love Plasma but it’s never been reliable long term.

        Your files?  IDK, depends on what and how you were transferring.  They may be intact on the old drive still.

        • #2364409
          MrJimPhelps
          AskWoody MVP

          I tried using a program called Testdrive, which is a Ubuntu file recovery program. It looked like it worked, but none of the files that it recovered will now open.

          I use Mint XFCE, so maybe I should try Ubuntu XFCE.

          Group "L" (Linux Mint)
          with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
          • #2364850
            MrJimPhelps
            AskWoody MVP

            I ran Testdrive again, this time running it as SUDO. I was able to recover the files I moved from my data drive to the new drive. I freed up a bunch of space on my primary hard drive, then recovered the files to a folder on my primary hard drive, and it appears to have recovered all of the deleted files on the drive (that is, all of the files I moved from there to the new drive).

            It recovers the files not by undeleting them on the drive they were on, but rather by copying them to an alternate location on your primary hard drive. Works like a champ IF (1) you have plenty of free space on your primary hard drive, and (2) you aren’t trying to recover files that were deleted from your primary drive (I’m not sure how you would safely do that).

            Group "L" (Linux Mint)
            with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
            • #2364871
              Ascaris
              AskWoody MVP

              Glad you were able to recover them!

              I use Veeam to back up my Linux stuff. Works great, but be aware that for now it is not working with kernels newer than 5.7 (5.8 works if you use the experimental veeamsnap build on their GitHub, but later kernels need a change to the kernel itself, which they are working on getting checked in).

              Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.0 User Edition)

        • #2364455
          Ascaris
          AskWoody MVP

          Mint and Ubuntu proper are identical when it comes to video card support. No difference at all. Both come configured to use the Ubuntu repo out of the box (so to speak), and when you install the driver, they will use the same .deb package.

          I don’t know where this idea is that they differ originated, but they don’t. If you had a problem with Mint before that was resolved by going to Ubuntu, it was something else causing it, not the inherent level of graphic card support.

          If when you say Plasma has not been reliable, you mean that it has been buggy… unfortunately yes, it has been, but it has improved a lot. Plasma (as Kubuntu and Mint KDE, which was a thing then) was my first choice when I started seriously looking at Linux in 2015, but there were always rough edges that pushed me away. It was how I ended up with Mint Cinnamon, which I used for a while back then. I kept returning to Plasma to see how it had progressed, and while usually the pattern had been initial optimism followed by an eventual return to Cinnamon, at some point I tried Plasma and found it ticked all the boxes, and did so better than Cinnamon. I moved to Kubuntu, then Neon, and now I can’t think of another desktop or distro I would rather use.

          As far as MrJimPhelps’ issue: I am sorry I have no advice to give as far as the data recovery. I would have to have it in front of me to be able to “play” with it and see if I could figure it out. In these situations, as soon as you realize something is wrong, it is best to stop and take an image of the drive before things get any worse. Too late now, I know. Been there, done that.

           

          Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.0 User Edition)

      • #2364955
        Paul T
        AskWoody MVP

        Have you run the drive manufacturer’s diags on the drive? This would be required to generate an RMA for warranty.

        cheers, Paul

        • #2366557
          MrJimPhelps
          AskWoody MVP

          Drive now works fine as a 4TB drive, formatted as ext4.

          Group "L" (Linux Mint)
          with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
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