How I recovered my corrupted partition

I have a Western Digital USB Drive that I use for data and testing new Linux releases. It had one NTFS partition for files I could share with Windows systems, one big data partition that I use to designate /home and several smaller partitions where I install varied Linux distributions. I had just deleted a couple of partitions that contained older Linux Mint versions and moved my /home partition to the outside of the disk using Gparted when an error occurred. After refreshing the application, it showed that my /home partition was unreadable. If I had been using Windows XP or Vista, my first instinct would be to wipe out the corrupted data and start from scratch. Not so in this case, I searched for a recovery utility that worked with EXT3 filesystems and discovered Testdisk.

The creator of this nifty tool provided sufficient information for me to install, operate and succeed in my task. I only used two commands in the terminal: sudo apt-get install testdisk and testdisk. It did not even take 5 minutes for the program to be installed. In a few keystrokes, Testdisk was able to fix my partition table and I got all of my data back. There are no guarantees in recovery. The best course of action is still to back up your data before you move or make big changes.


Installing Linux Mint 7 to External USB Drive

I have heard a lot of good feedback and saw really nice screenshots of Mint 7 Gloria, both Gnome and KDE versions. I had about 15GB of free space on a Western Digital USB drive and thought I’d go ahead and try it out. I already had Ubuntu and previous versions of Mint installed on the same drive. I booted up my Mint 6 system, downloaded the iso and burned it onto a CD with no issues. The computer I was and still am using is a Sony Vaio VGN-CR35G laptop with an ATI graphics card.

The installation itself was a breeze. No different from other processes I’ve gone through. The way my drive is set up is not unusual. I have 10GB partitions for the linux distros that I try out and a single /home partitions that is slightly larger. During the first boot, I was impressed with how great and streamlined it looks from login screen to desktop. I have no issues with drivers and the wireless works without any fuss, just like other versions. I feel that the run time from boot to desktop is faster and the annoying beep at shutdown isn’t there anymore. I’m excited to plug this drive into other computers in the house to see if compatibility would be an issue. I will have to write another entry on that.

Overall, I’d have to say that this is the easiest install that I have ever done. If I remember correctly, it is the quickest finish too. The artwork that comes with it is top caliber as always. You can never have too much eye candy. Compiz runs and works by default, which is great. I can’t really say anything more other than I wish I could sync this with my Ubuntu One account. Currenty, UO is in its beta stage and can only be used with a Jaunty system. Hopefully, that gap will be bridged in the near future. At the rate things go right now, that’s probably soon.

Copying Firefox 3 Bookmarks

I installed another OS on my portable hard drive and didn’t want to go through the hassle of rebuilding my bookmarks. Got help from nice people and thought to share. For Firefox 3, they make it fairly simple. You only need one file – places.sqlite. Now I’m on Linux so I’m not sure if the windows version has this file or hides it. The only thing that I had to do was copy places.sqlite from my working FF3 to my new one and closed/reopened it. I got everything I need. It copies the bookmarks but not the passwords. So you’ll have to enter those again the first time that you access emails and other sites with logins.

Hope this helps!