[OT] Hosed Xubuntu system

Richmond Mathewson richmondmathewson at gmail.com
Mon Nov 28 13:56:27 EST 2016

Once *extundelete* told me "space has been reallocated" I knew 
everything was cooked.


On 11/28/16 5:30 pm, Richard Gaskin wrote:
> Richmond Mathewson wrote:
> > I was unaware that there was malware for Linux :(
> Everything is hackable.
> > I turned on my Xubuntu system this morning and found *nothing*,
> >
> > so I started the machine up from a GParted boot disk and found that
> > not only had my boot disk been deleted, all the files on my other 2
> > hard drives had vanished
> >
> > and were not recoverable by GParted.
> >
> > I would be most grateful for any advice in this respect.
> This may or may not be malware.
> A more common attack would encrypt your files and demand bitcoin 
> ransom.  Merely deleting the files means an attacker would be working 
> with no benefit to themselves; not impossible, but with so many more 
> lucrative opportunities it seems unlikely.
> It may just be some sort of glitch (though it does seem an odd one).
> To get some help diagnosing and possibly repairing the situation, I 
> would recommend taking advantage of the Ubuntu forums, where they have 
> a section for general help with derivative flavors like Xubuntu here:
> <https://ubuntuforums.org/forumdisplay.php?f=331>
> > I was naive enough to think that backing up data onto other hard
> > drives within the same computer was safe.
> Better than no backup at all, but not without risks.
> With HDDs currently available for about US$50/TB I've become a big fan 
> of removable portable drives.
> I've collected quite a few, used in rotation with each containing the 
> last set of files from the day before.
> I use my secondary internal drive for incremental backups made with 
> the backup utility included with Ubuntu, so I can restore any given 
> file to any version over the last several months.
> And then I further hedge my bets with both a NextCloud setup which 
> backs up and versions my work files to my office server, and a second 
> mirror repository on my Mac which is also backed up to an attached 
> drive via Time Machine.
> Given that all software has bugs, and some will eventually make mash 
> of a backup, and that all hard drives will eventually fail, this 
> multiply-redundant setup helps mitigate those risks, using HDDs I'd 
> acquired over the years for various purposes so the redundancy has 
> grown over time.
> Of course manually managing these would be quite a time waster, so I 
> wrote a pair of bash scripts, one for my Linux box and one for my Mac, 
> which use rsync to automate the copying.  So now at the end of the day 
> I just run one script on my Linux box, then a second on my Mac, and 
> when they're done I have four local copies of everything (five for 
> work files thanks to the always-updating NextCloud) and one removable 
> drive updated to take home with the others for offsite protection.
> Back in the '90s I lost a big chunk of critical data in a hard drive 
> failure.  For me, taking a few minutes at the end of the day to run an 
> automated redundant backup helps me sleep better.
> -- 
>  Richard Gaskin
>  Fourth World Systems
>  Software Design and Development for the Desktop, Mobile, and the Web
>  ____________________________________________________________________
>  Ambassador at FourthWorld.com http://www.FourthWorld.com
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