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Recovering Linux after catastrophic deletion

Filed under
GNU
Linux
HowTos

A recurring Linux joke / horror story is running the command rm –rf /. Imagine if it actually happened? What would or could you do to recover?

Linux specialist Kyle Kelley recently decided to see what happened if he launched a new Linux server and ran rm –rf / as root.

This command is the remove (delete) command, with the flags –rf indicating to run recursively down all folders and subfolders, and to force deletion even if the file is ordinarily read-only. The / indicates the command is to run from the top-most root directory in Linux.

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