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I downloaded a USB disk image (.iso file) of 12.04 Precise and followed these instructions to create a Mac OSX bootable disk (.dmg file). The flash drive is enormous (~64 GB), and contained many other things, which I fear have been erased. In the Mac file browser ("Finder"), the USB drive doesn't even show up, as if there is no filesystem mounted.

Can somebody confirm that this process wipes the drive clean before creating the disk image? Is the previous filesystem permanently gone?

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Paragraph 4 from your link: Warning: This will destroy all data on the destination device. Please backup all data to other media before proceeding. –  ubfan1 May 25 '13 at 23:38
    
Can you boot it at startup instead of the OS on the HDD? –  RPi_Awesomeness May 26 '13 at 0:33

2 Answers 2

You can try to recover the data with Testdisk. Now keep in mind that its not guaranteed to recover anything, but give it a try.

TestDisk is powerful free data recovery software! It was primarily designed to help recover lost partitions and/or make non-booting disks bootable again when these symptoms are caused by faulty software, certain types of viruses or human error (such as accidentally deleting a Partition Table). Partition table recovery using TestDisk is really easy.

For more information on Testdisk, and to download the software, visit their website.

Source:TestDisk

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I use Data Rescue on the Mac, but yes, your drive is pretty trashed. Recovery is unlikely because you overwrote it.

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