I did something incredibly stupid: while tinkering with mount / umount trying to relocate some space, I did as I read on one website, and dit

sudo umount -f /mnt 

(I don't remember whether I used -f or some other command to force it)

And when I did it, it suddenly crashed ubuntu. Then I couldn't access my profile (because of lack of home directory) I tried this: Deleted home directory. Please help

And it worked, but the problem is, that this new home folder doesn't have any of my old files.

So the question is: Is this unmounting reversible? Or were my files deleted?

To rephrase the question: what could happen while unmounting /mnt ? What can I do to link my old home folder with new?


editor /etc/fstab


file system < mount point < type
proc /proc
/host/ubuntu/disks/root.disk /
/host/ubuntu/disks/swap.disk none

(sorry it took so long, I had problems accesing it)

Another question: What is the difference with /etc/fstab data and the data which can be retrieved by df -h? I manipulated with filesystem using info from df -h and now the info from fstab confuses me

  • 2
    If this isn't a standard filesystem setup (if you've got /home from another partition for example), please edit your question to include the content of /etc/fstab – Oli Aug 23 '13 at 11:45
  • 1
    Please do what Oli asked above, we cannot guess. And if you want to rephrase your question (not advisable at the moment) then do it by editing the question, not in a comment. – guntbert Aug 23 '13 at 12:25
  • What is this system? That fstab is most irregular. – Oli Aug 23 '13 at 12:36
  • You mean is this NTFS or something else? It's NTFS – Jakub Bartczuk Aug 23 '13 at 12:41
  • I mean that most systems mount a device on / rather than another path (relative to /host/)... When you say this is NTFS, do you mean it's a Wubi install? – Oli Aug 23 '13 at 12:45

Mounting and unmounting is a runtime thing. They don't write anything to disk - they just alter the in-kernel way the filesystem is mapped. Mouts are loaded from /etc/fstab so unless you've changed that, just restarting the computer would get things back in order. sudo mount -a might even work. It might not.

What would happen on a normal system if you forcefully unmounted /mnt is you would unmount the root filesystem (they would be the same device). The computer would grind to a halt near-instantaneously. On a normal computer, restarting would follow /etc/fstab and remount / (and everything in it, including /mnt) and put everything back in the right place.

In short: Reboot (or boot to a LiveCD for added safety) then see what the damage actually is.

  • "Mounting and unmounting is a runtime thing. They don't write anything to disk - they just alter the in-kernel way the filesystem is mapped. " I'm clueless. I don't understand why it crashed ubuntu. Tried restarting - didn't do any good. I also tried "mount -a". Would appreciate any help on what should I google (how to extract important information about fstab) – Jakub Bartczuk Aug 23 '13 at 11:54
  • Also, what's happening with the files when one umounts /mnt? Is this actually deleted, or does it only change location on physical disk? How to comprehend answer to this question? – Jakub Bartczuk Aug 23 '13 at 11:57
  • What do you mean restart didn't do any good? What are you left with? – Oli Aug 23 '13 at 11:59
  • Nothing happens to the files on disk when you unmount something. That's my point. They just become inaccessible through their old mountpoint until they're mounted again (which should be boot). – Oli Aug 23 '13 at 12:01
  • After creating home folder, as in provided link, I am able to access, but I don't see my old files. I'm also getting errors when I try to install something (as it needs access to nonaccessible files). If nothing happens, then the problem is to access them again - but I don't know how to do it. Rebooting didn't help. When I first rebooted I couldn't even enter desktop, as there was something like 'couldn't access home directory', but using the link which I pasted helped. – Jakub Bartczuk Aug 23 '13 at 12:14

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