Recovering a file on an msdosfs partition

Tore Lund toreld at
Fri Feb 2 17:54:50 UTC 2007

The thing that should never, ever happen did happen yesterday.  I lost a
file and was not able to recover it.  ROX-filer said NewFile where I
should have seen a familiar filename.  I tried fsck_msdosfs and got this
meaningful answer:

isidoros# fsck_msdosfs /kdisk
** /kdisk (NO WRITE)
Invalid signature in boot block: 0000

Not much help there, so I booted into Windows and ran chkdsk /f on the
slice in question.  The only thing it was able to recover was 4 kB of
binary zeroes.

Now, this was not a very important file.  And I may have written to the
slice since losing that file, so it may indeed have been unrecoverable.
 My question is whether I could have done anything else to make FreeBSD
correct the goof it had made.  The answer from fsck_msdosfs above does
not tell me a lot, and one fine day this may happen to some really
important file that has not yet been backed up.

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