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I've got 120Gb of storage space. Originally, I had WindowsXP installed, then I install ed Mandriva on one logical volume. Mandriva was working find. Then I installed Debian on another. ...
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  1. #1
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    Mandriva: "...superblock could not be read or does not describe a correct ext2 fi..."


    I've got 120Gb of storage space. Originally, I had WindowsXP installed, then I install ed Mandriva on one logical volume. Mandriva was working find. Then I installed Debian on another. I tested Windows and Debian, which were working fine, but when I tried using Mandriva, I got error messages at boot.

    The error messages are in French and in English (some in French, some in English). I'll put what is in French in brackets and translate. I'll leave the English as is, of course:

    (Vérification du système de fichiers racine) = Verification of root(?) file system
    fsck.ext3: Bad magic number in super-block while trying to open /dev/hda6 /dev/hda6:
    The superblock could not be read or does not describe a correct ext2 filesystem. If the device is valid and it really contains an ext2 filesystem (an not swap or ufs or something else), then the superblock is corrupt, and you might try running e2fsck with an alternate superblock:
    e2fsck -b 8193 <device>

    (*** Une erreur a été détectée lors de la vérification du système de fichiers)
    = An error was detected during system verification
    (*** Nous vous laissons dans un shell; le système redémarrera(...))
    = We will give you a shell; the system will reboot(...))
    (*** quand vous quitterez le shell?)
    = when you exit/quit the shell?
    Give root password for maintenance
    (or type Control-D to continue): _

    Here are my questions:

    1. What happened? Why am I getting this message. It must have happened when I installed Debian. No?
    2. Can I repair this without reinstalling Mandriva?
    3. If I do reinstall Mandriva (it was the second of three installations), can I just reformat the logical volume which it is on and reinstall? Or will this cause problems with the boot loader (which already things there are three operating systems)?

    If you know what is going on, please give me as much information as possible. I'm interested in two things here:

    A. Solving the problem; but also...
    B. Using this problem to learn more about installation, boot procedures, logical volumes, etc.

    Many thanks.

  2. #2
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    Mar 2007
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    Newcastle, Australia
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    Firstly I am not an expert in filesystems but recently repaired a similar problem when copying filesystems over.

    In short it appears the command you need is

    fsck -y /dev/hda6
    . I do adv though that you read the man page here http://www.die.net/doc/linux/man/man8/fsck.8.htmloh and the -y option means that it will assume all answers yes and automatically try to repair, I chose this because It will ask a lot of questions.

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