I have to restore the /etc/passwd file I accidentally renamed in my Ubuntu Server, so I booted the machine using a LiveCD.

Problem is, the system filesystem does not appear in Nautilus, under 'Devices'. Am I missing anything?

ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ sudo fdisk -l
Disk /dev/sda: 320.1 GB, 320072933376 bytes 255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 38913 cylinders, total 625142448 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: 0x000956dc

Device Boot         Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1   *        2048      499711      248832   83  Linux
/dev/sda2          501758   625141759   312320001    5  Extended
/dev/sda5          501760   625141759   312320000   8e  Linux LVM

ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ mount
/cow on / type overlayfs (rw)
proc on /proc type proc (rw,noexec,nosuid,nodev)
sysfs on /sys type sysfs (rw,noexec,nosuid,nodev)
udev on /dev type devtmpfs (rw,mode=0755)
devpts on /dev/pts type devpts (rw,noexec,nosuid,gid=5,mode=0620)
tmpfs on /run type tmpfs (rw,noexec,nosuid,size=10%,mode=0755)
/dev/sr0 on /cdrom type iso9660 (ro,noatime)
/dev/loop0 on /rofs type squashfs (ro,noatime)
none on /sys/fs/fuse/connections type fusectl (rw)
none on /sys/kernel/debug type debugfs (rw)
none on /sys/kernel/security type securityfs (rw)
tmpfs on /tmp type tmpfs (rw,nosuid,nodev)
none on /run/lock type tmpfs (rw,noexec,nosuid,nodev,size=5242880)
none on /run/shm type tmpfs (rw,nosuid,nodev)
gvfs-fuse-daemon on /home/ubuntu/.gvfs type fuse.gvfs-fuse-daemon (rw,nosuid,nodev,user=ubuntu)

ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ sudo blkid
/dev/loop0: TYPE="squashfs" 
/dev/sda1: UUID="aad69790-198d-45bc-9ccd-e4cba7456914" TYPE="ext2" 
/dev/sda5: UUID="wbIDX7-RILL-VtFT-gX15-N1GJ-Yyfg-V8Oe5m" TYPE="LVM2_member" 
/dev/sr0: LABEL="Ubuntu 12.04 LTS i386" TYPE="iso9660"

ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ cat /etc/fstab
overlayfs / overlayfs rw 0 0
tmpfs /tmp tmpfs nosuid,nodev 0 0
  • 1
    Edit your question to show us the output of sudo fdisk -l and of mount (from the live CD system). – guntbert Oct 18 '13 at 19:42
  • @quntbert Edited. – ftkg Oct 18 '13 at 20:02

Sometime it happens I don't know exactly why.. But you can mount it manually and I guess after mounting it will show. If you prefer to find a way to mount your disk then follow these steps.

  • Open terminal by Ctrl+Alt+T and execute this.

    sudo blkid

    it will show something:

    /dev/sda1: LABEL="Windows" UUID="FA50DCB150DC763B" TYPE="ntfs" 
    /dev/sda5: LABEL="40GBTWO" UUID="00A0CE7EA0CE7A24" TYPE="ntfs" 
    /dev/sda6: UUID="7550252c-3da7-4cd9-8da3-71e9ba38e74a" TYPE="ext4" 
    /dev/sda7: UUID="088fd084-a011-4896-aa93-c0caaad60620" TYPE="swap" 
    /dev/sdb1: LABEL="SaurK" UUID="1B7B3C0764A21F1F" TYPE="ntfs" 

    i,e all partitions of your hard-drive including the external one, whether it is mounted or not.

  • Now you can mount any of the partition by executing this command:

    sudo mount /dev/sda1

    if you want to mount /dev/sda1 replace /sda1 to the partition you want to mount.

  • Although it's now needed but I tell you to unmount you can execute:

    sudo umount /dev/sda1

    use the same logic as described in previous command.


As you can see your /dev/sda1 as well as /dev/sda5 entry is not in /etc/fstab. You can manually mount your partitions by following these steps.

  • First make a mount-point where you want to mount the partitions. Generally all the partitions mounted in /media. You've to create directory there in order to mount the partitions. Execute following in terminal to make two directory there:

    sudo mkdir /media/part1 /media/part2
  • Now you have to make changes in /etc/fstab in order to mount you /dev/sda1 and /dev/sda5 partitions. Execute following commands to do so:

    sudo nano /etc/fstab

    go to the last line and add these lines:

    UUID=aad69790-198d-45bc-9ccd-e4cba7456914 /media/part1    ext2    errors=remount-ro 0       1
    UUID=wbIDX7-RILL-VtFT-gX15-N1GJ-Yyfg-V8Oe5m /media/part2   LVM2_member    errors=remount-ro 0       1

    A little explanation: UUID="contains the ID of your hard disk partitions, 1st is of /dev/sda1 and 2nd is of /dev/sda5 partitions. sudo blkid command is very useful to get the partitions information like UUID, File-system type, partition entry etc.. So any one can use it to get their information. /media/part1 is the mount entry of 1st partition and /media/part2 is for 2nd. Remember why I created two directories above. ext2 is the file system type of your 1st partition: /dev/sda1. It may be something else also like: ext3, ext4, ntfs, fat etc, you can get the info from sudo blkid command as I mentioned above. others will be same for all types of file-system, it tells that if any error occurs then remount the file system in read-only mode this link is a great tutorial.

    press Ctrl+x to save and exit. Press y when prompt to save.

  • LVM2_member is quite a different file system, if adding it's info to /etc/fstab doesn't help then you can mount it by:

    sudo modprobe dm-mod; sudo vgchange -ay

    if needed:

    sudo apt-get install lvm2
  • You can mount /dev/sda1 by executing:

    sudo mount /dev/sda1

Hope it will help you to recover from your problem.

| improve this answer | |
  • When I try to mount it, I receive the message can't find /dev/sda1 in /etc/fstab or /etc/mtab – ftkg Oct 18 '13 at 20:21
  • Ok got it.. You've to manually edit /etc/fstab and do the changes to mount the drive. Let me edit my answer. and I also want to post you the output of this command: sudo blkid. It would be better if you provide the output of this command also: cat /etc/fstab – Saurav Kumar Oct 18 '13 at 20:25
  • Added the output to my response. – ftkg Oct 18 '13 at 20:34
  • 1
    Thanks. I still had a problem of not being able to mount LVM2_member. These lines helped me out: modprobe dm-mod; vgchange -ay – ftkg Oct 18 '13 at 21:11
  • 1
    @ftkg: It would be good if you edit my answer and mention how did you manage to mount LVM2_member file system. Not only it will make the answer complete, it will help others to solve their problems though. :) – Saurav Kumar Oct 18 '13 at 22:52

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