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This is perhaps the most bizarre problem I've ever come across, but my home directory in Ubuntu 9.10 seems to be occasionally reverting to a previous state.

For example, I'll change a setting in Opera (whose settings folder is in my home directory), then upon subsequent restart, may or may not have reset to what it was previously. This happens with all programs with settings in the home directory.

I have the Kubuntu desktop downloaded as well, so I am using KDE4. Any ideas?

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2 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Is it possible the changes are being written to the home directory of some other user - i.e. either (a) root or (b) some other userID you sometimes use?

Failing that... do you by chance have /home as an NFS mount? Or have a /home partition? Maybe you've got two different versions of your /home/zurahn directory, one you see when the partition is mounted and another you see when it is not.

Lastly for debugging let's get more basic - can you please create a text file in your home directory, edit it, reboot, and see if your edits are still there.

Hope this helps! -pbr

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I've had an image disappear from the home folder entirely before. I'm not yet sure what it is, but ideas from everyone here. Right now I've disable the auto-mount on startup I added to the rc.local. Unfortunately tedious because I'm never sure when it's going to act up. –  Zurahn Dec 2 '09 at 2:43
    
Zurahn can you provide more info about the "auto-mount on startup" that you had in rc.local? What was it auto-mounting, from where, to where? ALSO - AFAIK ubuntu doesn't USE rc.local - see here: help.ubuntu.com/community/RcLocalHowto - which makes me wonder if your rc.local is only getting run once at boot, or maybe it's getting run a bunch of times some other way (cron?) that might be part of the problem. –  pbr Dec 3 '09 at 4:07
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I don't suppose you have Raid 1 hard drives do you?

I have only come across something similar once when a client had Raid 1 drives set in round robin mode. Something went wrong with the raid chip and nothing was being synced. The next time, everything was being read from the other drive which basically lost any/all changes from the session.

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Interesting idea, but no, I don't have a RAID set up, though you did remind me of the only thing I thought might cause an issue. I back up using the dd command and 1024k block-size (1TB drive). I wasn't sure if that could be problematic. –  Zurahn Nov 28 '09 at 5:08
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dd backups should only be problematic if you're also doing periodic, automated restores. . . I Imagine you're using ReiserFS or some other journaling filesystem. If somehow your drive is getting flaky and the journaling sessions aren't being closed properly this could explain it. (e.g. Improper shutdowns.) Try examining /etc/var/messages and see if there are any errors associated with the file system for your /home partition.(Assuming you have separate dive/partition for /home) –  Jason D Nov 30 '09 at 0:17
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