Could you tell me please if there is a way to restore the directories and files beneath /media/sda7 that are no longer being shown by my file manager or ls?

My system is Debian.

Full Details:

Please could you help me out of this fix. I have a spare partition on /dev/sda7 (428 Gb), and have been storing files and directories on it (mainly video files). "mount" shows the setup as

/dev/sda7 on /media/sda7 type reiserfs (rw,nosuid,nodev,relatime)

I access /media/sda7 using my file manager (pcmanfm). Until earlier today, pcmanfm has happily let me create new directories and files beneath /media/sda7, such as /media/sda7/vids/horizon.mp4. But now, when I specify for example the directory /media/sda7/vids in pcmanfm, I get the message:

The specified directory is not valid

Now, none of the directories or files beneath /media/sda7 are displayed (the file list window is blank). Also ls in a terminal shows no directories or files beneath /media/sda7.

I have an idea that the reason might be because shortly before this started happening, I had launched the "GParted" disc partitioning utility. I did this to try and see how much disc space I'd used up on /media/sda7. I used GParted because du and df were showing zero and very little used disc space respectively, but I reckon the usage should be about 10 Gb.

I didn't carry out any actions in GParted - I just looked at what it was displaying, then exited. The thing is, I've got about 200 video files (mostly mp4) on /media/sda7, and I dearly don't want to lose them.

Could you tell me please if there is a way to restore the directories and files?

NOTE: I'm leaving the laptop powered on in case I'll lose everything if I shut down.

  • It may be that GParted simply unmounted the partition. Does sudo mount /media/sda7 help?
    – Joseph R.
    Commented Jun 3, 2014 at 21:38
  • grep sda7 /proc/mounts: does that show an entry? If yes, please look through the output of dmesg (or in /var/log/kern.log) for errors. If no entry from that grep, @JosephR's suggestion sounds good.
    – derobert
    Commented Jun 3, 2014 at 22:13

1 Answer 1


The simplest way to know if a filesystem is mounted on a directory is comparing the reported free space. If the free space inside that directory matches the free space of the filesystem where it should be mounted, chances are that your sda7 partition is not mounted there, and you should only mount it again:

# mount /dev/sda7

But if you can access the mountpoint, the reported free space is different as that of the "parent" filesystem and indeed there isn't anything, chances are that it got corrupted and your best bet is to run a filesystem check:

# fsck -fyv /dev/sda7

Alternatively, you can use the gnome-disks tool to view all your drive's partitions and whether they're mounted or not, and if they indeed hold a filesystem or they're only free space or if they do have a filesystem but are reported as empty (if the filesystem was corrupted).

  • 1
    You need to make sure the filesystem is unmounted before running a fsck. And fsck -y isn't a good idea, really.
    – derobert
    Commented Jun 4, 2014 at 16:47

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