In the past, I installed Ubuntu 12.04 with /dev/sda4 mounted as /home. I encrypted my home directory.

Today, I erased all the partitions except /dev/sda4 and I installed Xubuntu 14.04 on a new partition (/dev/sda3). I did not mount /dev/sda4.

Then I used usermod to change my home directory from /home/jordan to /home-old/jordan. Then I mounted /dev/sda4 as /home.

Now I want to change my current home directory from /home-old/jordan to /home/jordan, keeping the original (encrypted) contents of /home/jordan.

How can I do this? (I know both the login password and the ecryptfs passphrase used to encrypt the old home directory.)

1 Answer 1


A good starting point is the mount.ecryptfs_private(1) man page and the ecryptfs-mount-private(1) interactive command. Beware, I have never used this; on my ubuntu 14.04 I opted for encrypted home dirs and I now have a per-user directory /home/.ecryptfs/user/.ecryptfs/ with encryption info in several files, and /home/.ecryptfs/user/.Private/ with the encrypted data.

When I login it seems the pam module pam_ecryptfs(8) uses my login password to unwrap the passphrase, add it to my kernel keyring, and do the mount. I end up with /home/user/. Private mounted on /home/user.

/usr/share/doc/ecryptfs-utils/README.gz has more info.

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