Today, I opened my music player to play a particular song, and couldn't find it. So I check the filesystem - the entire folder for that album is missing. I did a count of the entire contents of the directory - 226 total files there. Yesterday there were 228. What happened to them? I definitely didn't delete them.

This sounds very similar to this question, except that I don't drag and drop things - I exclusively use the command line. Their problem happened when trying to drag and drop (i.e. move) a folder, while my files vanishes without me doing anything involving them. I don't even know what the other missing folder was - I don't remember the names of all 228 folders, so all I know is that one is missing, not which one it is. Is there any way to find that out?

I also noticed that my s.m.a.r.t check is reporting a high reallocated sector count, implying that my disk might be failing soon - is it possible that disappearing files are a symptom of incipient disk failure?

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    What file systems are you using? Are there any warning messages in dmesg? You can try to run a undelete tool to see if it was accidentally deleted. Search for .mp3 you are missing - maybe it was moved accidentally somewhere else. – jofel Jan 27 '16 at 10:44
  • Filesystems are built to store files long term, mysteriously disappearing files are an extremely bad bug, unlikely to survive for any length of time. Something (or somebody) deleted those files, perhaps by accident (files routinely moved/deleted by the system definitely don't include user files like the ones mentioned). – vonbrand Jan 27 '16 at 11:04
  • @jofel dmesg is really big, and there's a lot of stuff in it I don't recognize. How would I recognize an error? I don't know of an undelete tool would help - I use the command line, so I use "rm" instead of drag-to-trash, and my understanding was that you couldn't undelete rm? – Benubird Jan 27 '16 at 14:16
  • @vonbrand No kidding! How do I figure out what what deleted it? – Benubird Jan 27 '16 at 14:16
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    Search for the format of your filesystem (probably ext3 or ext4) and/or the name of you disk (like sda1, sdb3 ...). Both are usually displayed if you call mount without any parameter. Look also for I/O errors. Was the system properly restarted since yesterday or where there a sudden power-off etc.? – jofel Jan 27 '16 at 14:42

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