Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have an Ubuntu 10.4 slice on RackspaceCloud that is no longer responding after trying to upgrade to 11.10. I used their "Rescue Mode" to boot another slice with access to my old server, which gives me the following information on my main partition when I use fdisk -l:

root@server:~# fdisk -l

Disk /dev/xvdb: 81.6 GB, 81604378624 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 9921 cylinders, total 159383552 sectors
Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x00000000

Disk /dev/xvdb doesn't contain a valid partition table    

When I try and mount this, it won't let me without fixing this issue:

root@server:~# mount /dev/xvdb /mnt mount: you must specify the filesystem type

I'm guessing that the lack of a partition table is why I can't boot into the server -- is there a way to fix this or at least get access to the data on this disk?


Just tried again with a fresh rescue instance and got a little closer with:

root@server:/var/log# mount /dev/xvdb /mnt
root@server:/var/log# cd /mnt
root@server:/mnt# ls -l
total 16
drwx------ 2 root root 16384 2012-06-17 14:33 lost+found

The lost+found folder is all that is in the newly mounted drive which I suspect is because of the missing partition table again.

I'm new at working with partitions on ubuntu, so I may be making an obvious mistake -- any resource suggestions or other tricks greatly appreciated.

share|improve this question

Lack of a partition table is not the issue. You appear to have an entirely blank drive in the first instance, and in the second, you have a freshly formatted one. Perhaps your xen configuration is pointing the drive to the wrong location?

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.