Ubuntu Rescue Remix is a GNU/Linux live system which runs from CD or USB flash device. It provides the data recovery specialist with a command-line interface environment equipped with the best free-libre, open source data recovery and forensics tools available.

Version 9.04

Better late than never!


Version 9.04 (Jaunty Jackalope) of the very best Free-Libre Open-Source data recovery software toolkit based on Ubuntu is out.

This release of Ubuntu-Rescue-Remix features up-to-date versions of the most powerful free/libre open-source data recovery software including GNU ddrescue version 1.10, Photorec, LVM2, etc...


You can download it here:


4c40d446111c0f559f354ee5c9239e38  ubuntu-rescue-remix-9.04.iso

This iso image is compatible with the excellent USB Startup Disk Creator that is included with Ubuntu since 8.04 (System - Administration - USB Startup Disk Creator).  Use it to put the Rescue Remix along with a persistent home on any USB flash drive.

The live Remix provides a full shell environment. If you prefer to work in a graphical environment, a metapackage is available which will install all the data recovery and forensics tools onto your current Ubuntu system.  To do so, add the following archive to your software channels:

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main

Then, install the "ubuntu-rescue-remix-tools" package.


For help on recovering your lost data, visit the community documentation Data Recovery page, or ask on the ubuntu-rescue-remix forums.

If you want to expand the Rescue Remi's capabilities and features, please join in its development.  Any and all help is welcome!




About 130

I recovered 130 digital pictures from a failed hard drive. The drive contained several thousand pictures of my client's family before it failed. Every single photo they took of their kids since their kids were born was on it.

Can you imagine never seeing your kids' baby pictures again? It's not like losing a work-related document; those can be redone. Photos are pieces of past moments. It adds to the quality of our lives to be able to relive those past moments. Not to mention the ability to share those moments with those who weren't there.

This was not the first time I have had to break the bad news to someone. As rewarding as it is to save someone's files from the brink of oblivion, telling them it's hopeless puts a serious dent in my mood.

If everyone did proper backups, I would be out of the Data Recovery business. If you've been putting off running such a backup, stop whatever you are doing and backup those files now.

Hard disk problems...

Electro KittenElectro Kitten

GNU ddrescue 1.10 is released.

GNU ddrescue is a data recovery tool.

The homepage is at http://www.gnu.org/software/ddrescue/ddrescue.html.

It is packaged for Ubuntu-Rescue-Remix here:

(Add these sources to your software channels:)

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main
deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main

To download the debs for Jaunty (binary only):

Generic version:



Changelog: 2009-02-19 Antonio Diaz

* Version 1.10 released.
* Added new option "--try-again".
* rescuebook.cc: "skip_size" has been made independent of "softbs".
* "change_chunk_status" is now faster for large logfiles.
* Fixed overflow when reading from devices of undefined size.
* Block does no more admit negative sizes.
* "make install-info" should now work on Debian and OS X.
* New file testsuite/check.sh.

New URL for ppa

Launchpad has changed the URLs of PPAs. The new URLs for the Ubuntu-Rescue-Remix PPA packages are:

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main
deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu intrepid main
deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu intrepid main

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu hardy main
deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu hardy main


deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu gutsy main
deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/arzajac/ppa/ubuntu gutsy main

Version 8.10

The 8.10 version of the very best Free-Libre Open-Source data recovery software toolkit based on Ubuntu is out.

This release of Ubuntu-Rescue-Remix features up-to-date versions of the most powerful free/libre open-source data recovery software including GNU ddrescue version 1.9.


You can download it here:


md5sum ef32541cb6f33dbe9840a9bc56e7cb27  ubuntu-rescue-remix-8.10.iso



A premade usb image is also available here:


md5sum 3f74a97faced716aba51baaa048f2303  rescue-remix-8.10.gz

To write the image to a usb drive, insert the usb drive, determine the device's name and run the following command:

zcat rescue-remix-8.10.gz | sudo tee /dev/sdXx >/dev/null

Where "Xx" is the appropriate device (for example /dev/sdc1). Be careful since it will erase the filesystem on the device's partition! You can partition the device any way you like. The rescue-remix USB version occupies 200 Megabytes of disk space on the drive. The partition to which you write it should be set as bootable and an MBR should be written to the device.

Alternatively, the image can be written to the entire USB drive (Example /dev/sdc) for simplicity. This avoids having to partiion the drive or set up an MBR. However, you will not be able to use the remaining space on the drive.


For help on recovering your lost data, visit the community documentation Data Recovery page, or ask on the ubuntu-rescue-remix forums.

Plenty of things to do

Ubuntu-Rescue-Remix is a live cd/USB toolkit which includes the best Free/Libre, Open-Source data recovery software available.

I've been working on this for a little over a year with a little input here and there and I have been very happy with the results. The Rescue-Remix suits *my* needs perfectly. However, that doesn't mean that there aren't a lot of improvement that can be made.

I have found that I can recover as much if not more data using the free/libre tools than with the proprietary tools. Some of the advantages of using GNU/Linux tools for data recovery is that the command line provides a rich environment for dealing with mountains of raw data. I think a lot of the proprietary tools try too hard to provide a pleasant interface to the user, at the expense of leaving some data behind.

On the other hand, nearly every panicked user who, in searching for their lost/deleted files have stumbled upon Ubuntu-Rescue-Remix, have a hard time grocking the command line. That means that the Rescue-remix is not the best solution for everybody.

What can be done to improve this? Better documentation? A GUI?

If you haven't already guessed it, this is a Help Wanted ad. Apply within. Whether it's improving the live CD/USB, packaging your favorite tool, writing documentation or simply posting some of your experiences, any help is appreciated.


Oh, and if you want to create a GUI for all the Free/Libre data recovery tools available, that would be great too! Thanks!



Using the command line

The Ubuntu-rescue-remix live system provides a complete Unix command-line environment without any graphical user interface.  Do you find the GNU/Linux command-line difficult to learn?

Here are some links to help beginners get used to the command line interface:






Please suggest any other resources to add to the list. As well, if you know of any way to improve the usability of the rescue remix, please suggest them in the Help and Discussion section.



Version 8.04

Ubuntu Rescue Remix version 8.04 is out.

It features updated packages including Gnu ddrescue version 1.8.


Download the CD image here:

Download image

8c87d8f5931ffa763cd0a1f54abaa05f ubuntu-remix-804.iso

To burn an iso image, see https://help.ubuntu.com/community/BurningIsoHowto


Download the USB image here:

download USB image

e480c4a72171203e1384c6a3e6990786 ubuntu-remix-804.usb.gz

To write the USB image to a flash drive, run:

zcat ubuntu-remix-804.usb.gz | sudo tee /dev/sdxX >/dev/null

where "sdxX" is the correct device (sdc1) for example.

Be careful to pick the correct device as writing this to disk will erase everything else on the disk.

Case Study: Recover deleted .docx file.

Summary: A deleted Office Open Document XML (.DOCX) file was recovered from a USB drive.

Methods: The drive was imaged using GNU ddrescue and the file was found and recovered two different ways. Photorec was used to data carve the file and Sleuthkit was used to recover the file from the filesystem.


$ mkdir recovery
$ cd recovery

The drive was imaged:
$ sudo ddrescue /dev/sdc1 loopfile log

Photorec was run on the image and the file was recovered as a zip file.

$ photorec loopfile

Alternatively, the deleted files were listed using fls:

$ fls loopfile -r -f fat -i raw
r/r 3: test (Volume Label Entry)
r/r * 5: sample.docx
r/r * 7: sample.pptx
r/r * 9: sample.xlsx

The .docx file was recovered using icat:
$ icat -r -f fat -i raw loopfile 5 > sample.docx


DOCX (.docx, Office Open XML) documents are zip file types and can be recovered using methods used to recover .zip files.

----Add your case!----

Do you have an interesting Data Recovery experience using Free/libre tools?

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