LVM recovery on Fedora Core 6 with Fedora 8 Rescue CD

One of my hard disks on my Fedora Core 6 server nearly failed yesterday. It sounded like it loses power every now and then. This hard disk is my primary, it has the /boot partition and an LVM partition. It holds at least 36GB of the 300GB+ LVM Volume Group. Had it died totally, then most of the OS would have been gone along with some of my data. Luckily I was still able to boot from this nearly-dead hard disk for a couple of times.

I downloaded Fedora Core 6’s Rescue CD ISO and burned it. Every time I could boot into the system without a problem, I rebooted immediately and booted from the Rescue CD. I was hoping that I could move the LVM PEs off the broken hard disk ASAP.

During my first attempt, the faulty hard disk ‘disappeared’ when I was running e2fsck. I had to shut the system down for about 15 minutes to let it cool down. This trick did work and I tried another attempt. This time e2fsck finished without a problem, and I ran pvmove to move the PEs from the faulty disk. Unfortunately my kernel is the latest version but the device-mapper and lvm2 packages are not. pvmove printed out errors (“device-mapper: reload ioctl failed: Invalid argument”) no matter how many times I tried. Initially I thought that the faulty hard disk may be too damaged, but then since I could still boot the system without a hitch so I guessed it couldn’t be that damaged.

This post has a solution, but I didn’t use it. I downloaded Fedora 8 Rescue CD ISO and used that instead of Fedora Core 6’s. This time pvmove didn’t show any error and the process completed as expected without any lost data. I was then able to vgreduce the faulty hard disk from the LVM Volume Group.

If you experience the same problem, try downloading a newer Rescue CD and give it a try. Hopefully it will address problems that are present on older Rescue CDs. Good luck! 🙂

1 thought on “LVM recovery on Fedora Core 6 with Fedora 8 Rescue CD

  1. Hi There,

    Noticed your post in my desperate search to recover files from my fedora core 6 unit that I was using as an NFS. I stupidly unplugged one of the hard drives and now can’t access the OS or my LVM drives. I’m wondering what commands you used to restore the system, or if you know of a way I can simply get to the data in the LVM to transfer it to other media. I’m downloading the Fedora 8 rescue cd right now but any extra input would be very much appreciated. Feel free to e-mail.

    Thanks,
    Rob

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