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About 4 months ago, I installed Ubuntu 12.04 via wubi onto my laptop to run alongside Windows 7. At start-up, I can select which OS I would like to use.

Last night, I was working on two reports, and ended up writing about twenty pages between the two files. I wrote them using LibreOffice Writer, in case that is important. At the end of the night, I shut down my laptop as usual, saving and closing everything beforehand. When I turned my laptop on this afternoon, I tried to boot up Ubuntu, but it became stuck on the purple screen that it sends you to while booting up the OS. I let it sit for an hour and it still didn't get anywhere. I haven't installed or downloaded anything for about two weeks, and that was just Adobe Flash Player. I don't go to very many places on the internet, and I know that the couple of sites I use are safe, so I don't know what may have caused this startup issue. However, this topic is less important. During start-up, there is nothing saying that anything is missing or corrupted.

I figure I will probably have to reinstall Ubuntu, but is there any way that I can repair it and not lose my files that I have?

Also, if I have to reinstall, I would like to at least temporarily move the two files I was working on last night. They are the only two that I have not backed up yet. I saw a bunch of articles on this site and in a couple other places saying to install various ext2reader programs and such. I tried the four that everyone kept saying to use, but none of them actually found any files or even seemed to work. Every article I found is over a year old, so I am hoping that those programs were just outdated, and someone here might know a way for me to recover those files via windows that actually works.

So my two questions here would be: Is there a way for me to recover my LibreOffice Writer files from Ubuntu via Win7? How can I repair the start-up for Ubuntu, or do I have to reinstall it?

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Please check this answers-… – Web-E Mar 22 '13 at 3:46
What happens if you hold down SHIFT when booting Ubuntu to show the Grub menu, then select Advanced Options, then select Recovery mode? Does that work? What's the output of df -h. – bcbc Mar 22 '13 at 4:05
Try to use boot-repair. This program is capable to repair wubi installations as regular too. – NikTh Mar 22 '13 at 4:58
@NikTh boot-repair isn't very useful for Wubi. It does fsck the root.disk, but it also pokes the boot partition and replaces the windows bootloader unnecesarily. – bcbc Mar 22 '13 at 23:46

I recommend installing ext2fsd. It is basically a driver that allows you to view files in an ext2, ext3, or ext4 filesystem and mount them just as your C: drive in Windows.

In the ext2fsd program, right click on the partition you want to mount. Select ext2 management. check automatically mount via ext2mgr and choose a drive letter.

Your newly mounted partition should be viewable under my computer in Windows Explorer, and you should be able to copy the files with ease.

I personally think that it would just be easier to resinstall Ubuntu since you can back up your important files in Windows now.

share|improve this answer
I've used ext2read to get read-only access to the root.disk (since Wubi doesn't use partitions) but a loop device. I know this works. Not sure about the above although it may work on loop devices as well. – bcbc Mar 22 '13 at 4:03
I attempted to install ext2fsd, but when it was about to install, it came up with an error code and closed out. I uninstalled it and then reinstalled it, but still encountered the same problem. This seems to be the same issue I encountered with the other few programs that I tried. Might there be another way to move the files without having to install programs? – VB7937 Mar 24 '13 at 1:55

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