When all things break, you are sometimes left with just your latest backup (hopefully) and the need to get to some files.
In this case, the problem was a broken QNAP NAS where we recovered some LUN RAW-Device files from. To add to our challenge, the LUNs recovered did not contain any mountable file system such as NTFS or so – they essentially had been used as VMWare ESX Datastores – so the files in there are VMWare Definition Files & Virtual Machines plus their file system is VMFS – the VMWare File System (which is not directly mountable/readable under Ubuntu)
In preparation for a recovery, I installed an Ubuntu 13.04 System and then added the following components via apt-get install.
- iscsitarget: installs the iscsi target components – on some Ubuntu versions, this is sufficient to then host the LUNs, the 13.04 version (and maybe others) will throw an error “FATAL: Module iscsi_trgt not found.” which means I also have to install
- iscsitarget-dkms: this one will compile and install – afterwards, the iscsi target service can be started (configuration assumed).
- vmfs-tools: allows mounting and accessing partitions formatted in VMFS.
- open-iscsi: installs the iscsi initiator (client) bits and pieces you need in order to mount an iscsi LUN locally.
Obviously, you might want to consider an apt-get update to update the dependcy and package libraries if you have not done so in a bit… even if you don’t have a system like that available, you can install one on any PC you can spare for the job in 30-60 minutes.
Note on the PC: use a physical PC if you have large amounts of data or many LUNs to recover. Make sure your disks – if you have to use external disks – are USB 3 for performance and your PC also has a USB 3.0 bus available…