Howettblog®

Linux

Total: ∞ packages (0 good luck, 1 mistake)

by on Nov.16, 2008, under Linux

I’d just like to put this out there for everybody…

  1. Make frequent backups. Maybe every month.
  2. Do not, under ANY circumstances, accidentally try to install Haiku to /dev/sda. Ever.

Now that the advice is out of the way, it’s story time!

Yesterday, I was trying to install Haiku to my 512MB flash drive, which, when I plugged it in, got assigned /dev/sdb. The Haiku build system was, at the time set to write to /dev/sda2 (my 3GiB Haiku partition). I deleted the “2” and went on with my business. I ran jam -q haiku-image to build it.
“Hmm, this is taking a while.”
“dd, wrote 134 MB to /dev/sda”
“/dev/sda?! WHAT?!”
“OH MY GOD!”

It wrote 134 MB of 0x00s to the beginning of my hard drive, clobbering the bootloader, partition table, and the root filesystem of my Linux installation (/dev/sda1).

It also got to the “Populating Image” step, so it was happily chugging along writing a Be File System over my entire hard drive and filling it with Haiku data.
^C!

Programs still ran, not all the files on / were lost, and I was in a state of panic.
One reboot later confirmed the obvious – no more system. Also, no more files in /. The filesystem layout was in memory, and I should have taken the time to recover some of the data before I reformatted.

fsck told me that /usr was trashed.. /usr is like “Program Files” and more for Linux… Random data written in random places on a volume is… bad 😉
/ was definitely a goner…
/home somehow survived, guaranteeing that my 8 years-worth of data would stick around for a while longer!
Fortunately, I had backups from August 15th!
Unfortunately, they were from August 15th. That means 3 months worth of upgrades to do…

Restored / and /usr, some of /var (installed package database only), and went to work upgrading.

500 compiled and installed packages later (the last of which are still going) and Jesus is… Well, for the situation, I have to say he’s done pretty darn well. Kudos, me.

Once this is all done?

BACKUP TIME!

I think I need a NOS.

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