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trying to restore after a server failure...need some help

From: "David A(dot) Ulevitch" <davidu(at)everydns(dot)net>
To: pgsql-general(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: trying to restore after a server failure...need some help
Date: 2004-04-29 17:19:14
Message-ID: 1032. (view raw, whole thread or download thread mbox)
Lists: pgsql-general
Hi fellow pgsql users,

I am helping my university's student union get back up and running after
some major server issues they had.  They had serious disk issues on a
server, but not on the /var partition where all of the
/var/lib/postgres/data files were.  I was able to recover all of it, at
the file-system level.

The old machine and the new machine were both running Debian Linux
3.0-stable and postgresql 7.2.1-2woody4.

I did the normal debian binary install of postgresql-server and copies
everything from the old server's /var/lib/postgres to the new
/var/lib/postgres.  I then copied everything from /etc/postgresql from the
old server to the new server too. (/etc was also fine in the crash)  After
chown'ing all the files to `chown -R postgres.postgres /var/lib/postgres`
I tried to login.

Here's the weird part:
root(at)sulinux:/var/lib/postgres# psql -U spark spark_db
Welcome to psql, the PostgreSQL interactive terminal.

Type:  \copyright for distribution terms
       \h for help with SQL commands
       \? for help on internal slash commands
       \g or terminate with semicolon to execute query
       \q to quit

spark_db=> \l
       List of databases
   Name    | Owner | Encoding
 template0 |       | SQL_ASCII
 template1 |       | SQL_ASCII
(2 rows)

spark_db=> create database spark_db;
ERROR:  CREATE DATABASE: database "spark_db" already exists

It seems like the data is sort of there but not really.  The login account
works and it thinks spark_db exists but I can't query the tables or

Sadly, there are no other backups of this data other than what I recovered
from the old server.

What can we do from here?  Are there any experts we can consult?

David A. Ulevitch

  David A. Ulevitch - Founder, EveryDNS.Net
  Washington University in St. Louis --


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Subject: Re: trying to restore after a server failure...need
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