Before any admin decides to close my question or put it on hold for being possibly a duplicate, I want to say that I have thoroughly and painstakingly done my research and tests of various software on the Internet. None of them has worked for me. Plus, I have gone through all those relevant questions and answers on this site. None of them seem to address my concern but some came close.

This is what I am trying to do. I have an USB 3.0 External Hardrive with all my backed up data of my work but the whole hardrive is ENCRYPTED (LVM) and I need to retrieve files from it. I usually plug this hardrive into my Ubuntu Linux Laptop and get what I need from this USB hardrive with no problem. However, the laptop has been broken for about 2 weeks now. The other machine I am running is Windows 7. I installed virtual machine on windows and then installed latest Ubuntu hoping I will be able to easily grab the files I need from the external hardrive. For some reason, VirtualBox's USB support won't mount the hardrive even though it saw the hardrive. I thought maybe it wasn't connected to USB 3.0 and switch it to other USB ports. VirtualBox didn't see it at all. After several attempts, I quit messing around with Virtualbox. I found 2 or 3 windows software which promised that they can easily open LVM Linux Partition and be able to read and write from Windows. Unfortunately, they didn't help me either, although Ext2Fsd software came very close. It actually saw my USB external hardrive and allowed me to apply drive letter and mount it. However, it didn't recognize the filesystem and said "RAW." This is frustrating me to no end. The last thing to do is to actually install and dual boot Ubuntu on my Windows 7 system, but I have a feeling that won't work either. I don't have very many USB 3.0 port on my windows system. The ones I do have are being used by other devices and they require USB 3.0.

Could someone please guide me in the right direction? Thank you.

  • 1
    did you pass the USB harddrive to the VM? did you install VirtualBox Extension Pack for USB 3.0? – phuclv Sep 25 '17 at 3:24
  • Under VirtualBox's system settings and USB, I saw my External Hardrive and linked it to the Ubuntu system. Plus, I have installed the Extension Pack for USB 3.0. I even rebooted my whole computer system thinking it will help but didn't. When the system came back up and after VM Ubuntu started, it still didn't mount my external hardrive. This is really strange. Like I said, the ONLY step LEFT to do is actually install Ubuntu on my window 7 system and test it to see if it will. – ThN Sep 25 '17 at 15:24
  • You can do from th VM (probably) but you need to use tools for LVM. It won't mount automatically. – user772515 Sep 26 '17 at 0:08
  • You should check and see if Ubuntu is able to actually see your external hard drive. Run the dmesg | grep sd command in Ubuntu with the drive passed through Virtualbox and/or the lsusb command in Ubuntu and see if the drive can be seen in Ubuntu or not. This will help narrow down the problem being in Virtualbox or in Ubuntu. – Ben Franske Sep 26 '17 at 4:07

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