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I made a bad move by moving my /etc directory to Dropbox in hopes to sync two computer enviroments. After moving the /etc directory any sudo commands responded with "Who is this UID 1000?".

Basically I killed my user and kill all booting. Now I can't event boot up my system.

PLEASE HELP. Is there any bootable tool or method through GRUB command-line during boot process that I can gain access to my files.

I just need to run

mv /home/user/Dropbox Files/etc /etc

Is there anyway I can do that through the GRUB command-line during bootup? Standard terminal commands don't seem to work.

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migrated from Jun 20 '13 at 0:43

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Boot from a live-CD and move it back to where it belongs.

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live-cd? as in making a bootable usb with the Ubuntu 13.04 iso I initially installed with? – bbullis Jun 20 '13 at 0:45
Yes, that should work. – Renan Jun 20 '13 at 0:46
I'll give that a try. Hopefully I will be able to boot up and find my existing setup to move (mv) that directory back. – bbullis Jun 20 '13 at 0:47

Have you tried using a bootable medium (e.g. CD)? There are quite a few distributions out there that let you boot from an external medium, but let you mount your internal hard-drive. Knoppix is a tried and tested distro for these kinds of things, but there are plenty of alternatives.

Of course it's a bit of a catch-22 to ask you to download a copy of such a distro if you cannot even boot your computer. But perhaps you have a second machine available, or a friend could download a copy for you.

You will also have to configure your computer's BIOS so that it will actually boot from an external medium, rather than your built-in hard-drive, so check the boot options in your BIOS. Once your machine is fixed, you can reset that to the original configuration.

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I encourage you to delete your answer from here and post it instead on the duplicate question by the same user here. I have already flagged for a mod to delete/merge this question. – Karan Jun 20 '13 at 1:33

In GRUB, one of your options should be something with "rescue" in it. After booting it's likely going to drop you into an emergency sulogin root shell. From there you can copy it back and possibly even continue booting normally.

You probably can liveboot off your Ubuntu 13.04 cd as well.

Syncing the Linux running environment will involve bits and pieces of /var as well. However you should sync directories/files in /etc and /var "piecemeal" - i.e. don't do the whole directory but focus on programs whose configuration you want to make the same and then only sync those config files. Also Dropbox is probably a bad tool for this, you probably want to look into rsync or something similar.

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