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I had two HDDs, each one containing a LVM partition which formed a volume group. Then I had two LVs, one for my / directory and one for my /home/ directory. Yesterday where I had my / dir failed. I'm trying to recover at least my /home/ dir.

What I've done so far:

  1. Boot a live system
  2. Extract LVM2 metadata from the working HDD using dd
  3. Copy metadata to /etc/lvm/backup/vg0

Now I'm trying to do this:

pvcreate --restore /etc/lvm/backup/vg0 --uuid "[uuid of my working hdd]" /dev/sdb2

But I always get:

Couldn't find device with uuid '[uuid of broken hdd]'.
Couldn't find device with uuid '[uuid of working hdd]'.
Device /dev/sdb2 not found (or ignored by filtering).

I confirmed that /dev/sdb2 exists and I've commented out all filtering settings from /etc/lvm/lvm.conf so I don't know what might be causing pvcreate not to find the device.


  • What might be the problem?
  • Is it even possible to restore this partition? (As I'm writing this I'm starting to think it's impossible D:)

Edit: Okay, looks like I've got it figured out. I was using a Ubuntu 8.10 CD (yeah, I know it's not supported anymore) and it seems that was the problem. When I started from a Ubuntu 10.04 CD everything worked 'fine', I could mount my LVM partitions partially without problems. (Will answer the question in 4 hours. But if anyone has still got some hints/tips, please share! :)

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I was going to suggest checking to see if pvscan returned anything, as it's usually pretty good about locating LVM metadata. – Garrett Nov 19 '11 at 5:44

I agree with gman--start by running pvscan to detect the drive. Maybe add '-v' to get more detailed output. If pvscan doesn't detect it, you're in more trouble than I can help you with.

If pvscan finds the drive you should then be able to run vgscan to find the volume groups on it.

If that works, try lvscan to detect the logical volumes. Then mount the found logical volumes and use normal tools (rsync, cp, tar...) to backup/copy your data.

If any of those commands fail, hopefully someone else more knowledgeable with recovering LVM data can help you.

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