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Thread: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

  1. #11
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    Default Re: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

    Quote Originally Posted by markdd View Post
    First of all, never use usb sticks for holding the only copy of files. Sticks are much too unreliable for this. I knew a guy who had his PhD thesis on a stick (and only there) and the stick failed with only days to go until handing in the paper. Same happened to another guy and his master thesis, though that was on floppy disk at the time.
    Yep, i don't [& did not say so, above, thus am unsure why the lecture].

    Quote Originally Posted by markdd View Post
    That said, input/output error ususally means that either the filesystem is borked or the device has sectors gone bad.

    * run a filesystem check for the fs used on the stick
    * dd the whole stick to file (or /dev/null, we are only interested in errors showing when accessing source sectors) while watching dmesg output
    Good ideas, thanks... will do so once i get some time.

  2. #12
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    Default Re: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

    Quote Originally Posted by kensch View Post
    On 11/18/2017 05:26 AM, GooeyGirl wrote:
    >
    > Hi. This irritating little problem has persisted for a few months. I'm
    > now bringing it to the forum for assistance pls as i've run out of
    > ideas.
    >
    > The 3 bold-red directories need to be deleted, but all attempts to do so
    > in Dolphin, as normal user or as root, fail. Today i tried in Konsole,
    > but still cannot delete them.
    >
    > Code:
    > --------------------
    >
    > gooeygirl@linux-Tower:/media/veracrypt2/backintime/GA-Z97-HD3/gooeygirl/2> *ls*
    > *20170910-144843-847* 20170926-132318-261 20171008-122125-653 20171029-150642-591 20171112-162638-581
    > *20170916-130426-963* 20170927-151309-585 20171009-210219-896 20171103-103941-508 20171118-162101-633
    > *20170924-130926-174* 20170928-224137-598 20171021-104931-318 20171106-011244-786 last_snapshot
    >
    > --------------------
    >
    >
    > Using the first one as example:
    >
    > Code:
    > --------------------
    >
    > gooeygirl@linux-Tower:/media/veracrypt2/backintime/GA-Z97-HD3/gooeygirl/2> *rm -f -r 20170910-144843-847/*
    >
    > rm: cannot remove '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents/1. Home/Computer/Microsoft/Excel Stuff/How to open Excel files in separate windows in Windows 7_files/jquery.bi.queue.js': Input/output error


    You might try using Code:
    *****

    rm -ri *

    ******

    This will invoke an interactive rm dialog asking for confirmation on
    each file. It may provide some further clues.

    --
    Ken
    linux since 1984
    S.u.S.E./openSUSE since 1996
    Thanks Ken, cool command. Sadly it revealed essentially the same info as already posted, ie,
    Code:
    gooeygirl@linux-Tower:/media/veracrypt2/backintime/GA-Z97-HD3/gooeygirl/2> rm -ri *
    rm: descend into directory '20170910-144843-847'? y
    rm: descend into directory '20170910-144843-847/backup'? y
    rm: descend into directory '20170910-144843-847/backup/home'? y
    rm: descend into directory '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl'? y
    rm: descend into directory '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents'? y
    rm: descend into directory '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents/1. Home'? y
    rm: descend into directory '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents/1. Home/Computer'? y
    rm: descend into directory '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents/1. Home/Computer/Microsoft'? y
    rm: descend into directory '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents/1. Home/Computer/Microsoft/Excel Stuff'? y
    rm: descend into directory '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents/1. Home/Computer/Microsoft/Excel Stuff/How to open Excel files in separate windows in Windows 7_files'? y
    rm: cannot remove '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents/1. Home/Computer/Microsoft/Excel Stuff/How to open Excel files in separate windows in Windows 7_files/jquery.bi.queue.js': Input/output error
    rm: remove directory '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents/1. Home/Computer/Microsoft/Excel Stuff/How to open Excel files in separate windows in Windows 7_files'? y
    rm: cannot remove '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents/1. Home/Computer/Microsoft/Excel Stuff/How to open Excel files in separate windows in Windows 7_files': Directory not empty
    rm: descend into directory '20170916-130426-963'?

  3. #13
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    Default Re: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

    Quote Originally Posted by nrickert View Post
    My way of "fixing" the problem would be:

    Step 1: Make a backup of everything important.
    Step 2: Reformat the USB.
    Step 3: Restore from the backup.

    The old fashioned way of fixing such problems was with "clri". You would use "clri" to clear the inode (zero it out). And then you use use "fsck" to fix the problem created by "clri". And then all would be good.

    The "clri" command is not longer there. Apparently it is now a subcommand of "debugfs". And whether it would be useful, depends on the file system. It wouldn't work with NTFS or FAT. It might not work with "btrfs".
    Thanks. Yes, i am pretty much at the point of
    Code:
    Step 2: Reformat the USB.
    as you rightly suggest.

  4. #14
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    Default Re: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

    Quote Originally Posted by hendersj View Post
    On Sat, 18 Nov 2017 10:26:02 +0000, GooeyGirl wrote:

    > rm: cannot remove
    > '20170910-144843-847/backup/home/gooeygirl/Documents/1.
    > Home/Computer/Microsoft/Excel Stuff/How to open Excel files in
    > separate windows in Windows 7_files/jquery.bi.queue.js': Input/output
    > error


    This tells me that there's likely a problem with the media that's causing
    the issue. I'd concur with the idea of backing the device up, reformat,
    and then test it (maybe using dd to write data to it and see if it throws
    any additional i/o errors).

    --
    Jim Henderson
    openSUSE Forums Administrator
    Forum Use Terms & Conditions at http://tinyurl.com/openSUSE-T-C
    Thanks Jim. Yes, i'd probably have just done this many days ago, but for the major distraction of dealing with the unbootable Lappy, per recent post link. Probably tomorrow i'll finally get onto this stick again.

  5. #15
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    Default Re: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

    Quote Originally Posted by john_hudson View Post
    Having acquired over time a number of USB sticks with similar problems, I resorted to
    Code:
    dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sd?
    In some cases, I got a fully working USB stick back; in some, it had gone too far to be recovered. The main indicator of failure was how long, relatively, the code took to execute.
    Thanks John, i'm keen to try this not only in case it fixes the stick, but equally as i'm curious to observe a new-to-me command in action. I hope you're sitting down, as i have a noob question. I assume that your intention is that i use your command verbatim, except that i substitute the specific device letter for your "?" in "/dev/sd?"?

  6. #16
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    Default Re: AW: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

    Quote Originally Posted by susejunky View Post
    Is there more than one partition on the stick?

    What file system is in use?

    Is there any encryption?

    Did you create those directories/files from MS Windows?

    Regards

    susejunky
    Thanks SJ. It's a 128 GB USB3 stick that i originally bought & began using when i still used Win7 & was beginning to learn about Linux, prior to fully converting to it in 2014. Most of this stick is allocated to a VeraCrypt volume, which holds my weekly data backups done with BackInTime.
    Code:
    gooeygirl@linux-Tower:~> sudo blkid
    [sudo] password for root: 
    <<snipped for brevity; these were just my internal SSD & HDD>>
    /dev/sdc1: LABEL="SanDisk_ExtremePro" UUID="3690848A13C24128" TYPE="ntfs" PARTUUID="0008e9e6-01"
    /dev/mapper/veracrypt2: UUID="389896A298965DE6" TYPE="ntfs"
    gooeygirl@linux-Tower:~>
    Yes i did. But don't worry now, as per my preceding replies, i'm pretty much resigned now to just reformatting this stick.

  7. #17
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    Default Re: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

    Flash sticks have very limited life compared to other media. SSD use more or less the same flash tech but are smarter and do ware leveling where as Sticks are cheap and don't. Flash has a limited amount of write endurance. Each change in a block (about 100K typical) causes a block to be moved to a special address space to be later erased. At some point the stick runs out of spare space and more or less freezes up or completely stops working. IMO it is time for a new stick or change backup to a removable spinning rust drive.

    Long ago I did a program for a company. The lady there assured me she had backup of the data from the old program. When I went to retrieve the data from tape backup, which she religiously backed up to daily, the data was unreadable. Turns out she had been writing to the same tape for years and it simply wore out. So the moral of the store is to replace your backup media periodically

  8. #18
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    Default Re: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

    Yes, I wouldn’t advise using sd?. You might get ‘Device not found’ but I couldn’t guaranteed that!

  9. #19
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    Default Re: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

    Quote Originally Posted by gogalthorp View Post
    from tape backup,
    It all went pear-shaped once we left the storage pinnacle of punch-cards...

    But yes, it appears that this stick is now exhibiting your prognosis & explanation. Thanks.

  10. #20
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    Default Re: USB stick's 3 "undeletable" directories.

    Quote Originally Posted by john_hudson View Post
    Yes, I wouldn’t advise using sd?. You might get ‘Device not found’ but I couldn’t guaranteed that!
    Last night i kicked off with your suggestion, but [out of pure curiosity] i chose to initially perform the command in the ~128 GB stick's 100 GB VeraCrypt volume. For a couple of hours i could not specifically understand if anything was happening, but decided it was, when i noticed the cpu usage was unnaturally high [& all my other ongoing usual stuff i was doing does not do that]. After another couple of hours when i checked Konsole again, i discovered this:
    Code:
    gooeygirl@linux-Tower:/media/veracrypt2> sudo blkid
    [sudo] password for root: 
    
    /dev/sdc1: LABEL="SanDisk_ExtremePro" UUID="3690848A13C24128" TYPE="ntfs" PARTUUID="0008e9e6-01"
    /dev/mapper/veracrypt2: UUID="389896A298965DE6" TYPE="ntfs"
    
    gooeygirl@linux-Tower:/media/veracrypt2> sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/mapper/veracrypt2
    [sudo] password for root: 
    dd: writing to '/dev/mapper/veracrypt2': No space left on device
    209714689+0 records in
    209714688+0 records out
    107373920256 bytes (107 GB, 100 GiB) copied, 12813.3 s, 8.4 MB/s
    gooeygirl@linux-Tower:/media/veracrypt2>
    So, still in the spirit of idle curiosity, i'm tossing up now whether to repeat the command on the actual stick itself [ie, /dev/sdc1], or alternatively try to format it, then inspect the wreckage afterwards to see what is left. I also acknowledge that i don't understand the proper interpretation of that command output above. Is the fact of the records count differing by [only?] 1 evidence of a catastrophically damaged device, or instead of a device that still is in fair condition?

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