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Thread: Recovering a .gzip to original state

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  1. #1
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    Nov 2011
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    Recovering a .gzip to original state

    Hi there,

    I was trying to copy a file from the desktop into a folder. I accidently released the mouse while hovering on a .gzip file.

    The ubuntu file system did not just add that file into the .gizp file. It deleted all the contents of the .gzip file and now the .gzip file only contains the file that was accidently moved into it.

    Is this a normal behavior of the ubuntu file manager?

    Furthermore, this .gzip file contained important financial data. Is there anyway I can recover it to its original state?

    Thank you.
    Mo

  2. #2
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    Nov 2011
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    Recovering a deleted file

    On second thoughts of what might have happened:

    1. The Ubuntu file system deleted the original .gzip
    2. The Ubuntu file system created a new gzip with the same name and the newly added file as its only content.

    So, I may rephrase my question to be "how to recover a deleted file that's not in the trash?"

    Also, I've verified the peculiar behavior of the system's archive manager. I created a new archive and put some dumb files in it. I dragged, using the mouse, another file on top of it. It clearly showed a "+" sign indicating that it was adding the file to the archive. Upon the release of the mouse, and then examining the archive, it only had the recently added file. All the dumb files were gone. Is that normal?

    For what it's worth, I'm running Ubuntu 11.04 (don't know what Kernel) with the classic gnome interface (no unity)

    Can anybody help?

    Thanks in advance.
    Mo

  3. #3
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    Nov 2011
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    Re: Recovering a .gzip to original state

    Update:

    Another bit of info: The file type is actually .gz not .gzip as I originally thought, and it's a created by GNU Cash software.

    After following this link

    https://help.ubuntu.com/community/DataRecovery

    And this link

    http://www.psychocats.net/ubuntucat/...rdeletedfiles/

    Right now I'm using Photorec to scan my HD recovering only archive-type files. It's telling me estimated completion time approx. 4 hours. Fingers crossed. And I'll update this once scan is completed.

    Thanks for any input, if anyone has some!!

    Mo

  4. #4
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    Jun 2011
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    United Kingdom
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    Hidden!
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    Lubuntu Development Release

    Re: Recovering a .gzip to original state

    That is ...interesting. For now, just unzip the archive, add the file to the folder, then re-zip.

  5. #5
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    Re: Recovering a .gzip to original state

    Update Now Photorec recovered 2 .gz files but I'm out of disk space on the target drive!! I switched to root and deleted all unwanted recovered files, and still I have 0 free space. Looks like photorec has created a lot of temp files somewhere, or it messed up my entire file system. Luckily I have all my stuff on an external hard disk, and actually the file I was trying to recover is on that hard disk. So, I'll reboot now and try fsck and see if this will fix the problem. Then I can have a look at these 2 .gz files that were recovered by photorec. Later, Mo

  6. #6
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    Nov 2011
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    Re: Recovering a .gzip to original state

    Update:

    Just to clear any ambiguity. The file that got corrupted (as described in the first post) was already on an EXTERNAL drive that did NOT boot my Ubuntu. I did NOT attempt any write operation to that external drive, since I knew it could only lessen my chances of recovering the corrupted file.

    When I ran Photorec, my source was the 500 GB external drive. My target, however, was my internal HD that also booted my Ubuntu, and /home partition had approx. 100 GB free.

    Photorec, apparently, recovered 2 .gz files into the target output directory on my /home. However, it ate up all disk space. Rebooting the system, it failed to start, naturally, because it's out of disk space. Rebooting with the clean option or fsck option didn't help either. So, now i'm stuck with an external drive that has all my work that I can't write to, and a computer that has 2 recovered .gz files that I can't access because it won't boot.

    Next step. Get a live CD/USB ubuntu image and see if I can access that internal HD and see what is in the recovered files. If it works, all good. If not, I'll just give it up. I'll reinstall Ubuntu on the computer probably upgrading to the latest version, and will hook up my external HD and use it normally. I'll be set back for about 2 month of financial data worth as I slacked on my backup routine, and I deserve it.

    One thing I know now for sure, the integrated archive manager that comes with Ubuntu stinks big time.

    I'll keep you posted.

    Mo

  7. #7
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    Ubuntu

    Re: Recovering a .gzip to original state

    I duplicated your experiment on Ubuntu 11.10. I created four text files. I put three of them into a .zip file and the same documents in a .tar.gz file as well using the built in File-Roller 3.2.1

    then I drag and dropped the fourth file into both of the archives. after I examined both archives they both contained all four files.

    I attempted to create a .gz archive but I was only given that option when selecting a single file. When I tried to compress 3 files together I was not given the option to use .gz I suspected this was a limitation of gzip and then I discovered this:

    http://www.gzip.org/#faq16

    Can gzip compress several files into a single archive?
    Not directly. You can first create a tar file then compress it:
    Quote Originally Posted by moallam View Post
    I was trying to copy a file from the desktop into a folder. I accidently released the mouse while hovering on a .gzip file.

    The ubuntu file system did not just add that file into the .gizp file. It deleted all the contents of the .gzip file and now the .gzip file only contains the file that was accidently moved into it.

    Is this a normal behavior of the ubuntu file manager?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    Re: Recovering a .gzip to original state

    Quote Originally Posted by nhasian View Post
    ... and then I discovered this:

    http://www.gzip.org/#faq16
    Thanks for the enlightenment, but that doesn't help my case, does it?

    Ubuntu file/archive manager subsystem should warn users when they are moving files into a .gz file, not just let them inadvertently erase their original contents without warning. So, I'm still sticking to my conclusion that the current state of affairs stinks.

    I just hope getting this info out here would help some poor soul to understand what has happened to their .gz file and warn others to be extra careful when using their mouse for file operations when a .gz is involved. And may be, just may be, alert Ubuntu developers to include "a your xxx.gz is being replaced" warning as a feature in future releases, instead of fighting over unity vs classic gnome!!

    At any rate, if you can tell me of a sure way to recover that lost file that was inside of the .gz, I'd really appreciate it. If you can tell me of a way to recover from the mess Photorec created while recovering my files, so that I'm able to boot this computer again, and save me the hassle of going in with a live CD and then an OS reinstall, I'd really appreciate that too.

    Thanks,
    Mo

  9. #9
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    May 2010
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    Lancaster, UK
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    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: Recovering a .gzip to original state

    I've not been able to replicate this issue in 10.04, when I drop a new file on an existing .gz file, it just adds the file to the archive, in addition to the previous contents - it doesn't replace them.

    This is really weird behaviour and I don't think its the norm. Sorry I can't be of more help.

  10. #10
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    Re: Recovering a .gzip to original state

    Quote Originally Posted by moallam View Post
    At any rate, if you can tell me of a sure way to recover that lost file that was inside of the .gz, I'd really appreciate it. If you can tell me of a way to recover from the mess Photorec created while recovering my files, so that I'm able to boot this computer again, and save me the hassle of going in with a live CD and then an OS reinstall, I'd really appreciate that too.

    Thanks,
    Mo
    You can try to free up some disk space with:

    Sudo apt-get clean

    I know you said that the Photorec output went to your home directory but did it put its working files in /tmp?

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