Can't mount /home anymore

Nickel Cadmium nicdnicd at
Sat Jan 20 11:01:14 UTC 2007

Hi Christian (& all)!

Thanks for the reply. I was away for some time but here is the extra
information you requested.

Yes, after the message "fsck.ext3: e2fsck_read_bitmaps: illegal bitmap
block(s) for /home", fsck just stops.
The command 'fsck.ext3 /dev/sda6; echo $?' returns the value 8. Looking at
the man page for fsck, I found that this is an "Operational error". I have
totally no clue what this means.

With fsck, nothing is reported in the syslog file. If I try mounting the
partition, I get the following errors reported:
Jan 20 11:43:57 localhost kernel: EXT3-fs error (device sda6):
ext3_check_descriptors: Inode bitmap for group 522 not in group (block
Jan 20 11:43:57 localhost kernel: EXT3-fs: group descriptors corrupted !

I could dd the partition without errors. I did copy the partition two times
already, I order to be able to try some recovery on it. With converting a
copy to ext2 and running "fsck.ext2 -v -y" on it (in something like two
days), I was able to get some files (all?) in the lost+found. However, the
file names are lost and the directory structure as well. It's hard to tell
which file is what.
I'm really wondering if there is a way to mount that partition again.

I run Mandriva on a Pentium PC. My kernel is 2.6.17-5mdv. However, I first
thought than my /home problem was some kind of booting problem. Thus I
upgraded from Mandriva 2006 to Mandriva 2007. This means that I don't know
what my kernel was when the problem occurred. It should be 2.6.12 as this
was a straight out-of-the-box installation.
My fsck version is "e2fsck 1.39".

Best wishes,

On 1/14/07, Christian Kujau <lists at> wrote:
> On Wed, 10 Jan 2007, Nickel Cadmium wrote:
> > # fsck.ext3 /dev/sda6
> > e2fsck 1.39 (29-May-2006)
> > Group descriptors look bad... trying backup blocks...
> > Inode bitmap for group 522 is not in group. (block 3271884801)
> > Relocate<y>? yes
> >
> > fsck.ext3: e2fsck_read_bitmaps: illegal bitmap block(s) for /home
> ...and after this message, fsck.ext3 just stops? What's the exit code of
> fsck.ext3? (e.g. 'fsck.ext3 /dev/sda6; echo $?'). Try "fsck.ext3 -v" for
> more details. Is there anything related in your syslog? Can you dd(1)
> the device (read! not write! :)) without errors?
> Which kernel/arch are you running?
> Christian.
> --
> BOFH excuse #99:
> SIMM crosstalk.
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