[sclug] Well, *that's* not supposed to happen...

Will Dickson wrd at glaurung.demon.co.uk
Thu May 24 15:11:43 UTC 2007

Hi all,

I've got a USB2.0 external HDD which I use for backups. It came with 
FAT32, but I got bored with the 4GB file limit (and the various 
irritations which arise 'cos it has to emulate file ownerships / 
permissions) so I stuck ext3 on it instead.

Then there was a power cut. Now, this shouldn't have made any difference 
- it was plugged in at the time, but the box in question has a UPS 
(which worked), I'm pretty certain it wasn't mounted (the backup system 
automatically unmounts it when it's finished) and I managed to do a 
clean shutdown before the UPS ran out of battery.

Anyway, everything came back up nicely and I thought no more about it, 
until this morning when I turned on the monitor of the box in question 
for another reason (it's a server) and saw a load of error messages from 
EXT3FS all over the console. WTF? Ran e2fsck, loads of filesystem errors 
:-( It lost one largish file completely (fortunately, nothing I cared 
about that much, and the original is OK anyway) and the datestamps on 
the various files it's supposed to back up every night are 20 / 21 may 
(some 20, some 21); this was the day the power cut hit, which is why I 
mention it.

Badblocks -n is still running, but nothing so far. Hardware is a fairly 
elderly Athlon with a powered hub, running KUbuntu Dapper, fully updated.

Anyone have any ideas why this might have happened? AIUI ext3 is 
supposed to be ultra-reliable, which is why I went for it. All I know 
is, I never had anything like this from FAT32 :-/



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