Ubuntu: I accidentally formatted the wrong volume - is it possible to restore the old Ext4 Filesystem?



Question:

I just formatted the wrong volume - is it possible to restore the old ext4 partion?

Of course that happened after deleting the old backup - great.


Solution:1

As long as you didn't completely shred your drive, if it was formatted fastly (it means, it just deletes the information, but it is still available in the hidden). It is possible, but requires amounts of time and a place to recover the files to (You should not recover to the same harddrive as they are located on)

I found this by searching, may wanna give it a try ?

http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk

Step by step:

http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk_Step_By_Step

Make sure to recover to an external hard-drive, and best of luck!


Solution:2

Apparently it is not possible to recover the old ext4 filesystem. I am currently recovering some files with Photorec, with mixed success.

A response from the developing of UFS Explorer is as follow:

The reason is ext4 on time of format destroys completely all inodes and even file system journal so volume only contains file data; usually it is fragmented. Ext4 uses special tree structure to store map of file fragments and this tree is stored in inodes that are wiped with zeros.

It’s recommended to continue using PhotoRec and other similar free utilities in attempt to get some data back; no commercial software will help you more in this case.

As they are experts on that field and their statement is backed up by Wikipedia, I would therefore answer the question myself with the conclusion that it is not possible to restore the whole filesystem.


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