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Old 08-16-2004, 04:08 PM   #1
PortlandPaw
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How to revive a fried drive with dd_rescue

{Please see the update of this post here.}

I had to do a considerable amount of searching and expermentation to get dd_rescue to work, so I thought it would be worth a "how-to" thread.

dd_rescue has the ability to copy almost everything off a damaged hard drive relatively quickly. There is a helper utility (dd_rhelp) to assist in the process, but I haven't tried that yet. Hope I don't have to. dd_rescue requires a linux platform. Being a non-linux person (I know, I'm thinking of converting) I tried with a couple of the standard CD boot disks (Jenkins, Keegan) but they didn't possess the necessary libraries. So I decided to do it with a Knoppix boot.

So here are the steps:
1. Download the Knoppix ISO and burn a CD from it. Available from here.

2. Download the .tar.gz file of dd_rescue from here and save it to a floppy in your A:\ drive.

3. Leave the floppy in A:\ and set your computer to boot from the CD drive. Configure your hard drives appropriately. Be very careful to never boot into Windows with TiVo drives attached! Boot only into the Knoppix CD.

4. When the welcome screen comes on, enter "knoppix 2 dma" at the bottom and hit enter. This bypasses all the graphics, enables access to the devices (which I couldn't do under the GUI), and enables DMA on all drives. Very important for speed.

5. Enter "cd /mnt/floppy" and "tar =xwzf dd_rescue-0.2.tar.gz."

6. Enter "cd dd_rescue"

7. Enter "dd_rescue -A -v /dev/hd{old} /dev/hd{new}. For the truly uninitiated:
/dev/hda is Primary Master drive
/dev/hdb is Primary Slave drive
/dev/hdc is Secondary Master drive
/dev/hdd is Secondary Slave drive

That's it. The copying should go very quickly until it hits a bad sector and then it will slow down to take smaller chunks of data. People have reported very good results with this technique. When I replaced a pair of Maxtor 120s with new Seagates (at $49 each after rebates at Best Buy -- my good luck for the week), dd_rescue got up to about 115 gig when it reported there was no more room on the target drive. Scared me, but apparently didn't hurt the process, as the TiVo booted up normally. {later edit -- turned out this was a problem -- the geometry of the drives should be identical (or at least the target drive larger) or TiVo is going to have trouble finding blocks of data} Of course, it re-booted after three minutes, just as it did before I replaced the drives, so I did all this for nothing. At least I learned how to mirror my drives.

BlankMan has done quite a bit of research into the intricacies of dd_rescue and they may be found here. Information about dd_rhelp is also in this thread and here.

Hope this helps people save their favorite Olympic moments!
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Old 08-16-2004, 09:06 PM   #2
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Isn't dd_rescue already on the Knoppix CD?

Knoppix is a very big download (although it's a very easy way to get some Linux experience - it doesn't involve modifying your PC by installing stuff on the hard drive, everything runs from the CD). There are a lot of 'live' Linux boot CD's, many of which are much smaller than Knoppix.

I don't know which ones have dd_rescue, but I suspect at least some of the discs in the 'rescue' category will have it.

A bit more research reveals it's definitely on RIP, which is a 25Mb download.
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Old 08-17-2004, 06:11 AM   #3
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I looked for dd_rescue on my knoppix distro and if it's there, I couldn't find it. I played around last night with creating a floppy boot disk on which I could put dd_rescue, but the results were lacking. I'm sure improvements can be made to my method but, in my case, it was "get the job done!"

Thank you, Robert S, I found RIP and will investigate how that works and report back here. I'd rather be ready the next time instead of thrashing about.
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Old 08-17-2004, 08:06 PM   #4
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{This is an updated version of my first post to indicate a more efficient way to do this}

I had to do a considerable amount of searching and expermentation to get dd_rescue to work, so I thought it would be worth a "how-to" thread.

dd_rescue has the ability to copy almost everything off a damaged hard drive relatively quickly. There is a helper utility (dd_rhelp) to assist in the process, but I haven't tried that yet. Hope I don't have to. dd_rescue requires a linux platform. Being a non-linux person (I know, I'm thinking of converting) I tried with a couple of the standard CD boot disks (Jenkins, Keegan) but they didn't possess the necessary libraries. So on the advice of Robert S, I used the RIP (Rescue is Possible) CD.

So here are the steps:
1. Download the RIP ISO (currently named RIP-10.3.iso.bin) and burn a CD from it. Available from here. {EDIT (1/5/05) I'm told that this is now obsolete as most distributions of Knoppix have dd_rescue}

2. Set your computer to boot from the CD drive. Configure your hard drives appropriately. Be very careful to never boot into Windows with TiVo drives attached! Boot only into the RIP CD.

3. When the welcome screen comes on, select "Boot Linux rescue system [skip keymap prompt]" then login as "root."

4. Enter "cd /usr/bin"

5. Enter "dd_rescue -B 1b -b 2M -A -v -l /var/dd_rescue.log /dev/hd{old} /dev/hd{new} ." For the truly uninitiated:
/dev/hda is Primary Master drive
/dev/hdb is Primary Slave drive
/dev/hdc is Secondary Master drive
/dev/hdd is Secondary Slave drive

6. The log file should be gzip'd and copied to a floppy before rebooting, as the /var directory will go away.

That's it. The copying should go very quickly until it hits a bad sector and then it will slow down to take smaller chunks of data. People have reported very good results with this technique. When I used it dd_rescue got up to about 115 gig when it reported there was no more room on the target drive. Scared me, but apparently didn't hurt the process, as the TiVo booted up normally. {later edit -- turned out this was a problem -- the geometry of the drives should be identical (or at least the target drive larger) or TiVo is going to have trouble finding blocks of data}

BlankMan has done quite a bit of research into the intricacies of dd_rescue and they may be found here. Information about dd_rhelp is also in this thread and here.
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Old 08-17-2004, 09:36 PM   #5
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You've excluded the use of one of the very important features of dd_rescue which allows it to copy data faster and that is the use of the -b and -B parameters.

Although -B has a default of 512 which is what you want so leaving it out is ok (I'm not one that relies on default values and always includes them in the command line because a new release can change them while you're thinking they remain the same, hate surprises like that), but -b defaults to 16384 which is too small. Setting it to 2M utilizes the cache on most hard disk thus improving performance. Setting it higher then 2M, say 4M, caused problems in some instances so 2M is a pretty safe bet.

BTW Good job.

<Added>

P.S. I like log files too and you left that parameter out.
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Old 08-18-2004, 05:04 AM   #6
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Thank you for the info especially on the -b parameter. Remember that I'm booting from a CD in a Windows box with an NTFS drive (I probably didn't mention that) -- how could I write to a log file under those conditions?
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Old 08-18-2004, 12:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by PortlandPaw
Thank you for the info especially on the -b parameter. Remember that I'm booting from a CD in a Windows box with an NTFS drive (I probably didn't mention that) -- how could I write to a log file under those conditions?
To /var or someplace that has room then gzip it and put it on a floppy before you reboot and its gone.

<Added>

I should mention, even though you are booted from a CD and maybe think you cannot write because a CD is read only, you are not running off the CD like you do when you normally boot off a disk in Windoze or Linux. You are actually running off a pseudo disk (for lack of a better term) that is actually a memory disk and acts, for all practical purposes like a real disk, except for the fact, Poof! Gone! when you reboot. If you knew this, excuse me.
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Old 08-19-2004, 07:58 AM   #8
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No, I didn't know that. Actually, I should have, because I've noticed the creation of a ramdisk during bootup and I've been able to create mount points in /mnt, which obviously would have been impossible otherwise. Thanks, I'm always learning. That's what makes this fun.
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Old 08-22-2004, 10:44 AM   #9
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If the intent of this is to be a HowTo you might want to add the -B and -b parameters to the OP. If you don't use the -b you are not getting the full advantage of using dd_rescue.
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Old 08-23-2004, 08:17 AM   #10
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Right you are. I'll edit the earlier post.
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Old 08-23-2004, 12:27 PM   #11
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I noticed you put 4M in the example, did you use 4M and did it work? I mentioned that 2M was a safer bet, I had some segmentation fault problems with dd_rescue when attempting to use 4M.

Also, if the drive only has a 2M cache and you request a 4M read you're going to be waiting on the disk.

So all in all 2M is a better recommendation for general usage, power users that understand UNIX/Linux, dd_rescue, and know the size of the cache on the source and destination drives can adjust it as they see fit.

And I noticed you updated it in the 4th post and not the first, I know you reference the 4th post in the 1st but chances are people in a hurry may miss the difference(s).
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Old 08-23-2004, 01:09 PM   #12
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My mistake on the 4M -- I meant 2M. I left the first post the way it was for the sake of documenting Knoppix with the hope that someone with this problem would have the persistence to read the referenced post as well. Thanks for the catch.
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Old 08-24-2004, 12:49 AM   #13
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Betcha didn't think HowTo's would be so much fun eh?
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Old 09-02-2004, 09:52 AM   #14
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How long is this process suppossed to take? Mine has been going for 2 days so far on a 120 gig hd?
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Old 09-02-2004, 11:28 AM   #15
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I'd say your patience exceeds your success.
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Old 09-02-2004, 08:47 PM   #16
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dd rescue

i tried following the commands listed but when i reach the end of the line, instead of going to the next line, it begins to overright the original line. as i am new to linux, what should i be doing to go to the next line.
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Old 09-15-2004, 02:50 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by BlankMan
P.S. I like log files too and you left that parameter out.
How vital are the log files? I don't have a working floppy drive in my box...can I save to a FAT32-formatted thumb drive?
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Old 09-15-2004, 02:57 PM   #18
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drdarren: It sounds like your console isn't set up quite right. It's just an aesthetic problem, though - the command is being accepted correct. (You can try pressing Ctrl-L to clear the screen).

SM: The log files aren't a vital part of the copy process, they just tell you what happened. The only real test is when the copied drive goes into the TiVo.

Knoppix has pretty good USB support, so you may well be able to access a USB drive. I've no idea which device node you'd mount, though.

If you write the log file to somewhere in one of the RAM drives (/tmp or /var/tmp), you can review the log with more or vi before you switch off the machine.
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Old 10-06-2004, 01:29 PM   #19
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PTVupgrade LBA48 CD with dd_rescue / dd_help

Folks,

At the suggestion of Robert S, I've looked into, and made an attempt, to incorporate dd_rescue and dd_rhelp. Not as trivial as it initially seemed, there were a bunch of libraries that appeared to be missing.

In any case, I think I've identified and located the missing libraries, and dd_* binaries and incorporated them into a test version of the CD discussed here but before I release it to the general public, those who play with these tools, please give things a test and let me know what is broken, and hopefully what needs to be done to fix it.

Thanks!

Lou

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Old 10-07-2004, 02:41 PM   #20
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Hi,
At the request of tivoupgrade, I'm posting this here.
I'm trying to rescue an HDVR2 drive with the beta CD of PTVupgrade, and I'm having some problems with dd_rescue.
I can't use the -B switch or the -A switch (unknown command error), and -b 2M gives a segmentation fault. Basically I am only able to use:
dd_rescue -v /dev/hda /dev/hdb.
I'm trying it with dd_rescue -v -b 2048 /dev/hda /dev/hdb, hopefully that will increase the speed a bit. (Is that the same as -b 2M?)

Anyway, fingers crossed that this will save the drive. Hopefully tomorrow afternoon sometime I'll be able to post results.

Sean
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Old 10-08-2004, 12:42 PM   #21
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Thought I'd give an update. Even with the problems with the command options, the dd_rescue worked fine, with all recordings intact.

Now here's the freaky part: Afterward, the MFSinfo command resulted in this:

Primary volume header corrupt, trying backup.
Secondary volume header corrupt, giving up.
mfs_load_volume_header: bad checksum
segmentation fault.

So I was just assuming it wasn't going to boot at all again. But somehow it did! Something on my failing drive must have been really messed up.

Sean
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Old 10-09-2004, 07:05 PM   #22
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I am trying to copy my flakey 30 gig drive to a 40 gig drive from my series 1 philips unit.

The comptuer I am using only has the orginal tivo 30 gig drive and my spare 40 gig drive. I don't know if it matters, but my 40 gig drive was used in windows with an ntfs partition.

I then deleted the partition from within windows and then removed the exisiting drive.

I then plugged in the orginal 30 gigger as the primary master and the new ex-windows drive as the primary slave drive.

I then booted to the rip cd and followed the instructions.

It doesn't appear to do anything but it says this:

I copied the log file to one of my window's shares, i will post it at the end of this post.

As soon as I hit enter after I type in the command I get a bunch of stuff then it drops me back to the # prompt.

I am not really sure what is going on.

This is the log file i get: (copied and pasted from it):

Code:
dd_rescue: (warning): setting hardbs from -512 to softbs -2097152!
dd_rescue: (fatal): you're crazy to set you block size to -2097152!
dd_rescue: (info): about to transfer 0.0 kBytes from /dev/hda to /dev/hdb
dd_rescue: (info): blocksizes: soft 2097152, hard 512
dd_rescue: (info): starting positions: in 0.0k, out 0.0k
dd_rescue: (info): Logfile: /var/dd_rescue.log, Maxerr: 0
dd_rescue: (info): Reverse: no , Trunc: no , interactive: no 
dd_rescue: (info): abort on Write errs: no , spArse write: never
dd_rescue: (info): about to transfer 0.0 kBytes from /dev/hda to /dev/hdb
dd_rescue: (info): about to transfer 0.0 kBytes from /dev/hda to /dev/hdb
dd_rescue: (info): blocksizes: soft 2097152, hard 512
dd_rescue: (info): blocksizes: soft 2097152, hard 512
dd_rescue: (info): starting positions: in 0.0k, out 0.0k
dd_rescue: (info): starting positions: in 0.0k, out 0.0k
dd_rescue: (info): Logfile: /var/dd_rescue.log, Maxerr: 0
dd_rescue: (info): Logfile: /var/dd_rescue.log, Maxerr: 0
dd_rescue: (info): Reverse: no , Trunc: no , interactive: no 
dd_rescue: (info): Reverse: no , Trunc: no , interactive: no 
dd_rescue: (info): abort on Write errs: no , spArse write: never
dd_rescue: (info): abort on Write errs: no , spArse write: never
dd_rescue: (info): ipos:      8192.0k, opos:      8192.0k, xferd:      8192.0k
                   errs:      0, errxfer:         0.0k, succxfer:      8192.0k
             +curr.rate:    12201kB/s, avg.rate:    12201kB/s, avg.load: 11.9%
dd_rescue: (info): /dev/hda (10000.0k): EOF
Summary for /dev/hda -> /dev/hdb:
dd_rescue: (info): ipos:     10000.0k, opos:     10000.0k, xferd:     10000.0k
                   errs:      0, errxfer:         0.0k, succxfer:     10000.0k
             +curr.rate:    30497kB/s, avg.rate:    13686kB/s, avg.load: 12.3%
Any help would be greatly appreicated. (the drives are being recognized properly by the bios.) I'm getting quite fustrated with this whole process, LOL. Also I do have a spare 4 gig drive that I would not mind using as a backup for my Tivo drive if I can make use of that.

Thanks...
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Old 10-09-2004, 08:58 PM   #23
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10000.0k, xferd

Is it just me, or is that a locked drive?

I asked Lou to put dd_rescue on his LBA-48 upgrade CD. That one should unlock the drive (as long as it's a Quantum), which might make things easier.
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Old 10-10-2004, 02:43 AM   #24
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Well you are right, its a locked drive. I didn't bother to actually go into the bios and see what it showed. I then went into the bios and sure enough, it detects it as a 10megabyte drive. How the heck does tivo fit 30 hours worth of recording into a 10 meg drive? (just kidding).

<later>

I unlocked the drive (found the utilitiy someplace).

I then went ahead and did the copy. It worked perfectly this time. It found 16 errors on the orginal drive.

I then put the 40 into my tivo and booted it up.

It booted perfectly and smoothly.

But (always a but), it only shows 32 hours in the system information. Did I forget to do something?

I am going to now make a backup of the tivo drive to a spare 4 gig fat32 drive I have.

I hate being such a nag with all these questions but I really dont' want to mess anything up.
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Old 10-10-2004, 06:16 AM   #25
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Did I forget to do something?

mfsadd?
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Old 10-10-2004, 06:21 AM   #26
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Well I went ahead and did the mfsadd -x /dev/hda (it was the only drive in my test computer) and that went fine.

I then put the drive back into the tivo and powered it up. I got the GSOD. Hmmmm.

Well anyway, i'm going to let it sit til morning and see if it recovers (if i put my ear up to the tivo, i can hear the drive chugging away).

One more thing, since my 30 gig drive only came up with 16 errors, what test do I use with the powermax utility that I downloaded from Maxtor's website to hopefully map out those bad sectors? I am currently doing the advanced test but I'm not sure if I am supposed to do the full low level format.
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Old 10-10-2004, 01:12 PM   #27
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Well it is working fine. I have tested everything and it all seems to be working fine.

No more stuttering or freeezing that occured with the old drive. A full 40 gigs is now available.

I'm happy and I am now going to go ahead and setup a tivo acct for real.

Thanks for the help.
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Old 10-11-2004, 09:28 AM   #28
Jnegri
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Arrow Won't power up

Hi,
I have a 2 year old TIVO that was working fine and then one night it turned itself off. After 5 - 10 minutes I turned it back on and after several attempts to restart it finally started. Two days later it went off again and has not regained conciousness. The green light is on in the front and it flickers when the buttons on the remote are pushed but I get no video output whatsoever. I broke down and bought a new TIVO. Now I want to get all of the recorded stuff off of the old hard drive and I am looking for someone to do it for me. Anybody good at repairing or retreiving saved programs?

John
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Old 10-11-2004, 10:43 PM   #29
tdogboy
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I used the OP's corrected (third post) instructions to get the data off the failing drive out of my Sony SVR-2000 (Quantum 30GB drive) and my TiVo is working great now!

I thought the drive was going bad, so in early September, I did the mfsrestore/mfsbackup to two new 200 GB drives and everything worked OK. The TiVo would occasionally freeze (meaning I'd turn on the TV and the picture would be frozen on a TV show and nothing I pushed on the remote would do anything on the TiVo), but cycling the power would bring it back up. Well, we got to the point where after cycling the power, we would just get the "Powering up . . ." screen and nothing else.

dd_restore read the drive and we're up and running now! I'm keeping a reliable copy of the 30GB drive around for a few months until I'm sure it's working properly. Then it's going in wifey's computer as a Christmas present.
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Old 10-12-2004, 06:22 AM   #30
PortlandPaw
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Quote:
Originally posted by tdogboy
Then it's going in wifey's computer as a Christmas present.
That will thrill her.

Trust me, do that as a weekend favor and get her something she really wants for Christmas. Your marriage will be far more secure. Trust me.

You get more than technical assistance in the TiVo Community Forum!
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