My computer recently wasn't able to boot up properly. I've got ubuntu on a flash drive and am running it on the computer. I have an external hard drive to save files from my internal one but it doesn't show up in the file explorer. How would I be able to mount the hard drive so I can save my files.

Edit: I let my computer update overnight and when I went to boot it up in the morning it put my in an infinite loop of trying to repair the hard drive. All I have access to is the bios menu. I got ubuntu on a flash drive and used that to boot up something thinking it would show up in the files there.

  • Hi John, and welcome. What do you mean when you say that your computer "wasn't able to boot up properly"? What specifically did happen when you tried? Please Edit your question to include some more details. The more details you can provide about what you did see and what did happen, the more likely it is that someone will be able to provide a good answer that actually helps you. – a CVn Jan 22 at 21:25
  • I edited it with extra detail – John the Human Jan 22 at 21:40
  • Hey, it's been a couple hours, i kinda need this asap – John the Human Jan 23 at 1:58

Ignoring the booting problems, and if the hard drive still works 100% OK, then you just need to boot the live USB, mount the old hard drive, and copy your files off (to the external drive apparently).

Disks / gnome-disk-utility should let you do that with a few clicks

  • mount (the "play" button) the partitions to copy from & to, and away you go.

    enter image description here

Or in a terminal:

  1. Identify the drives to mount, they'll probably be a /dev/sdXN device, using lsblk or lsblk -o +LABEL,FSTYPE should help identify the right drives.
  2. Have directories to mount them to (mkdir a b)
  3. mount -v /dev/sdm1 a
    mount -v /dev/sdn1 b
  4. Copy (cp) the files you want from your old drive to the new one

In case your filesystem or drive is damaged, see these for more info:

and consider making a drive image first (that you can experiment with & break without serious consequences) with gddrescue

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