Ever had a failing disk? Using some hard drive recovery tools we can make salvaging our valueble data something possible. Using dd_rescue we are going to make an image of the hard drive onto a reliable storage area, then we can run whatever filesystem recovery utilities we want.

The beauty of ddrescue is that it is fully automated and will rescue all the blocks that it can read successfully on the first pass, and with any bad blocks it will come back and retry as much as possible.

Install ddrescue tools

sudo apt-get install ddrescue

Connect the failed disk to your system

By either plugging the drive directly into system, or using one of those usb enclosure or slotted drive device you’ll need to have your failing hard disk connected and unmounted before we can begin.

sudo dd_rescue /dev/sdb disk-image.img

mnk0@earth:~$ sudo dd_rescue /dev/sdb disk-image.img [sudo] password for mnk0: Summary for /dev/sdb -> disk-image.img:r: 0.0k, succxfer: 228352.0k dd_rescue: (info): ipos: 229376.0k, opos: 229376.0k, xferd: 229376.0k errs: 0, errxfer: 0.0k, succxfer: 229376.0k +curr.rate: 26249kB/s, avg.rate: 28391kB/s, avg.load: 13.5%

We can now mount this image on our system and take a look at the files.

mount -t ext3 -o loop disk-image.img /mnt/tmp