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I have a hard disk with a crashed Ubuntu system . while installing the system I checked the "encrypt my hard disk (or something like that) " check box . and now the system has crashed . so how do I recover my /home and /etc folder .

Ubuntu system is 15.10 .

As I am a newbie in Linux I don't know how to solve the error that's crashing the system but the home folder is really important .

So , how do I recover my /home and /etc folder from an encrypted hard disk.

More information

After the Ubuntu logo it shows a dialog box which says "there seems to an error in your graphics or input devices" and done. I tried 100's of solution (not literally) and after some 4/5 hours of trying and trying now it doesn't show the recovery options or the dialog box. It takes me to shell aks or something like that.

I even tried to upgrade it to same OS. While in the process of upgrading it showed that no operating systems were detected, and I rolled back. Then I made a USB bootable stick and tried the "try Ubuntu" but it said partition cannot be mounted. I even took out my laptop's hard disk and connected it to another Ubuntu machine (as a external hard drive ) but it only showed me the grub files not my hard disk files.

  • Question 1: what do you mean by "The system crashed" – Palantir Oct 28 '15 at 18:06
  • Question 2: what is the problem in accessing the data: can you boot your ubuntu? Do you get an error message somewhere? Where does it get stuck? – Palantir Oct 28 '15 at 18:07
  • After the Ubuntu logo it shows a dialog box which says " there seems to an error in your graphics or input devices " and done . I tried 100's of solution (not literally) and after some 4/5 hours of trying and trying now it doesn't show the recovery options or the dialog box . it takes me to shell aks or something like that – user1820264 Oct 28 '15 at 18:11
  • And I even tried to upgrade it to same os . while in the process of upgrading it showed that no operating systems were detected . and I rolled back . then I made a USB bootable stick and tried the "try Ubuntu" but it said partition cannot be mounted . I even took out my laptop's hard disk and connected it to another Ubuntu machine (as a external hard drive ) but it only showed me the grub files not my hard disk filea – user1820264 Oct 28 '15 at 18:13
  • See answer below :) – Palantir Oct 28 '15 at 18:47
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There are two possibilities of encryption within Ubuntu.

  1. Full disk encryption

It means that the whole disk is encrypted. Immediately after starting (right after booting the kernel) you are prompted for a password. It looks like this: http://imacify.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/Ubuntu-FDD-lock-Screen.jpeg

This does not seem your case, because your problem happens later in the booting sequence.

Anyway, this guide shows you how to access an encrypted volume using a Ubuntu Live CD or USB stick. You should be able to recover some data and copy them over to another disk. Good luck :)

https://alvinabad.wordpress.com/2012/09/22/how-to-recover-a-luks-encrypted-disk/

  1. Home folder encryption

In this case, home partitions are encrypted on a per-user basis.

Here are a few resources for you:

http://www.howtogeek.com/116297/how-to-recover-an-encrypted-home-directory-on-ubuntu/

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/EncryptedPrivateDirectory

You should try to recover your data first. But I also think that it should not be too hard to restore functionality to that box.

  • I get a shell saying (initramfs) and cryptsetup is not found . and for the dialog I see is " you are running in low graphics mode" I see this dialog even in the live cd – user1820264 Oct 28 '15 at 19:09
  • So you have a corrupted initfamfs. If it complains about cryptsetup then you are in case 1 of my answer. Live CD should not be affected by this: are you sure you are booting it correctly? – Palantir Oct 28 '15 at 19:25

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