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September 10th, 2004


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12:14 am - Numbers.
When we moved over here I brought across all of the negatives I have (wanted to bring the slides too, but they took up far too much space to come in our luggage, and I didn't want to trust them to the shipping company). This means I have about 220 films. At a guess, around 150 of those are colour 35mm, 40 are B&W 35mm, and the rest are 120 format (negatives 56x56mm, in this case). Of course, I want to scan them all. This means approximately 7200 frames to be scanned, named, labelled, organised. At 5 minutes each (probably the absolute minimum, the actual scanning takes 3 minutes), that's around 600 hours of work. Whew.


Meanwhile, before coming here, I had a computer with two hard drives - a Linux one, and a Windows one. I put a lot of backups from my other Linux PC, plus backups of various files from Windows onto the Linux drive, then deleted all of my files from the Windows one. The plan, of course, was to sell the computer with just the Windows drive in it, and take the Linux drive over here with me. In reality, I made a little mistake, and brought the wrong drive over. Oops. So, now that I have this Windows drive with an NTFS filesystem on it here, I figured I'd try to undelete the files, and at least recover some of the files. Now, if I just try to boot Windows from that drive, I'll probably need to do a "repair" installation on top of the existing one (after all, I have different hardware now), which risks overwriting some of the deleted files. So, I want to try to recover them from Linux, which is running on the other drive I have here. This version of Mandrake does at least know how to mount NTFS drives read-only - write access is still labelled as experimental, risky and dangerous, so I think I'll hold back on that. There is a set of NTFS utilities available, including a program called "ntfsundelete". Unfortunately, while it can restore files from the NTFS filesystem, it doesn't restore the directory structure they were under.
I ran it. I now have approximately 190,000 files. Sitting in one directory.
Then I looked a little more closely at the list of files that the "-scan" option to ntfsundelete gave me - some files appear in more than one place. For example, I have about 190 copies of a file named "baldur.gam" and 130 copies of "baldur.sav". Looking a little more closely (at sizes and such), they're all different. Yup, those will be the gamesaves from my many games of BG I and BG II - but without the nice directory names which actually specify which save they are. Argh !
So, I ran ntfsundelete a little more cleverly, and now have 190,000 files, sitting in 193 directories named "Files000" through to "Files193".
Still, I have 190,000 files to deal with. That's rather a lot. It's easy enough to pick out things like MP3s and MPGs and a few things like that, and sort out which ones were music and which ones were part of games, but for some things I forsee a whole lot of sorting to do ahead of me. Whew.

Current Mood: impressedoverwhelmed by numbers.
Current Music: www.di.fm, Hard Trance channel

(En garde !)


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