Accidentally formatted ETX3 disk to FAT32

Using TestDisk to repair the filesystem
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Mistaker
Posts: 3
Joined: 13 Oct 2013, 19:08

Accidentally formatted ETX3 disk to FAT32

#1 Post by Mistaker » 13 Oct 2013, 19:14

Hope I'm posting this in the right forum.

I did the dumbest thing on Earth (or in the Universe for that matter). I accidentally formatted my 1 TB external EXT3 backup disk instead of my USB thumbstick to FAT32. I'm on Linux and the command I used is:

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mkfs.vfat /dev/sdc1 -n "Mistaker 2GB"
It went really fast so I do not think a lot happened... Can I get my TeraByte of photo's music collection, home movies, documents, etc. back w/ YestDisk?

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Fiona
Posts: 2836
Joined: 18 Feb 2012, 17:19
Location: Ludwigsburg/Stuttgart - Germany

Re: Accidentally formatted ETX3 disk to FAT32

#2 Post by Fiona » 14 Oct 2013, 06:55

Did you run TestDisk / Quick and Deeper Search?
Would it be possible to copy and paste the content of your testdisk.log into youir next post?

Fiona

Mistaker
Posts: 3
Joined: 13 Oct 2013, 19:08

Re: Accidentally formatted ETX3 disk to FAT32

#3 Post by Mistaker » 14 Oct 2013, 12:30

Fiona wrote:Did you run TestDisk / Quick and Deeper Search?
Would it be possible to copy and paste the content of your testdisk.log into youir next post?

Fiona
Not yet. I did not dare to connect the 1 TB external drive to my computer anymore before I know what to do. I heard somewhere that accessing (or worse: writing to-) the disk may cause more data-loss, or the backup of the original FAT (file allocation table) being overwritten.

I received a tip from somebody else: make a bit-by-bit mirror image/copy of the disk to another disk w/ the (Linux) command:

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ddrescue
So I'm going to buy another 1 TB disk within a few days to make said copy. With that copy one can "work" on recovering etc.

P.S. Thank you very much for your kind reply! :)

Mistaker
Posts: 3
Joined: 13 Oct 2013, 19:08

Re: Accidentally formatted ETX3 disk to FAT32

#4 Post by Mistaker » 18 Oct 2013, 15:10

I really, really, don't understand how to use TestDisk, I'm sorry. I just don't get it. To practice recovering my files I created an SD card with an EXT3 file system and two test files to recover. After that I "accidentally" formatted it to fat32.

When I run TestDisk on it and do a quick search and a deeper search on it (takes a long time), just like Fiona recommended, it does list the old etx3 partition. But what to do then??? I highlighted it and then chose: "P - List files". Then TestDisk says: "No file found, filesystem may be damaged.". Like: Duuh! I knew that because I accidentally formatted said disk/partition. Then I go back and choose "Enter: to continue". After that I can only quit to the main screen (?!).

Maybe It's me, but Delphi's Oracle was more clear to the ancient Greeks than TestDisk to me.... Sorry. just want to recover my data. How might I do that?



These are the "screenshots" of the deeper search:

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TestDisk 6.14, Data Recovery Utility, July 2013
Christophe GRENIER <grenier@cgsecurity.org>
http://www.cgsecurity.org

Disk /dev/sdb - 1977 MB / 1886 MiB - CHS 1021 61 62

Warning: the current number of heads per cylinder is 61
but the correct value may be 255.
You can use the Geometry menu to change this value.
It's something to try if
- some partitions are not found by TestDisk
- or the partition table can not be written because partitions overlaps.

[ Continue ]
I press Enter (of course) and then the output of Testdisk, when I hightlight the partition I'd like to recover, is:

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TestDisk 6.14, Data Recovery Utility, July 2013
Christophe GRENIER <grenier@cgsecurity.org>
http://www.cgsecurity.org

Disk /dev/sdb - 1977 MB / 1886 MiB - CHS 1021 61 62
     Partition               Start        End    Size in sectors
   FAT32                    0   0 33  1021  17 52    3862496 [UNSOL_RESPO]
>  Linux                    0  33  3  1021  17 52    3860480 [ext3_part]
   FAT32                    0  33  3  1021  17 52    3860480 [fat_part]




Structure: Ok.  Use Up/Down Arrow keys to select partition.
Use Left/Right Arrow keys to CHANGE partition characteristics:
*=Primary bootable  P=Primary  L=Logical  E=Extended  D=Deleted
Keys A: add partition, L: load backup, T: change type, P: list files,
     Enter: to continue
ext3 blocksize=4096 Large file Sparse superblock Backup superblock, 1976 MB / 1885 MiB
Now what? Is TestDisk able to recover my 2 test files?

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