WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

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icorey2014
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WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#1 Post by icorey2014 »

So, a while back, I had a friend install Debian Linux onto my Acer Aspire One. Other than a few minor things here and there, I had no problem working it and even learning how to do many MANY different things with it. Until tonight, that is. I went and attempted to install Steam onto it, just to see what all the hullabaloo is about. I was able to get the package install terminal to come up, and it said I needed a few programs to be able to run the program. Of course, without thinking, I entered my sudo password. After a while, I noticed that the terminal was saying "removing..." on a whole bunch of different things. Scared that I was going to completely wipe my entire computer on accident, along with the 56 gigabytes worth of music I had on there, I immediately held down the power button to shut it off. When I went to go turn the computer back on to see if any major damage had been done, I noticed that in the boot terminal, where it says "Starting..." on everything that makes Debian work, there were quite a few lines in red that weren't there before. Then, right before going to the usual profile login screen, a black terminal screen came up saying "debian login". I tried with both my profile login and my root login, but every time I entered something, it told me it was the wrong password! I can't get it anywhere beyond that point, and even using the command "rescue" in the boot prompt wouldn't get me anywhere! So, what I am asking is this; is there a way to go in and reverse what has been done through the boot menu or recovery boot cycle, so that I can still keep all my music and other files, or do I have to have my friend reinstall the entire operating system and start my entire collection over from scratch? I had Debian Linux Wheezy, and I don't personally have any extra HDDs that I could back everything up to, and I don't have any HDD internal-external converters to be able to partition anything and set up a new operating system so that I can rework the original HDD in my laptop. Currently, I am using a Windows 7 Professional desktop, and the largest drive I have is a 32 gigabyte micro sd card that I currently have almost full of all my music. What do I do!? :(

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#2 Post by dilberts_left_nut »

icorey2014 wrote: What do I do!?
DON'T use ALL CAPS for your subject.

DO use paragraphs to break up your wall of text.

DON'T (ever) turn off your pc during an upgrade/install operation.

DO read what the package manager says it is going to do before saying 'yes'.

DON'T follow instructions by clueless numpties on how to install Steam on Wheezy (without reading up on the implications of what they are proposing).

Right then - first - your data is safe, package operations do not touch user data - it can be retrieved from a live media if nothing else - where to put it is your problem.

Your system is in an unknown state - presumably you were in the middle of upgrading libc6 (a very bad idea in itself) when you pulled the plug.
It MAY be recoverable, but you're unlikely to find someone with the motivation to handhold you through the process remotely and the smart course of action is to wipe it and reinstall.

If you have a separate /home partition then this is a no-brainer - get on with it.
If not, start working on getting some space to copy your precious data off to.
AdrianTM wrote:There's no hacker in my grandma...

icorey2014
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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#3 Post by icorey2014 »

Thank you.

Yes, I do believe I have enough space on my Windows 7 Professional desktop, however the problem is how exactly to get it all copied over before I go in and wipe it all. If need be, I could most likely get whatever I need to do so, however I cannot say that I am exactly an expert in how to do all of this stuff. In fact, I would have to say that even through all that I do know, I'm still just a newbie.

The transfer, of course, is something I need to know about. With live media, as I was using Rhythmbox, I am unsure on how to approach it. Are there any certain sites you can direct me towards that can fully explain it? At this point, I'm sick of scouring the web for information that has been provided by those who do not know what they're doing, I'm not learning anything by that!

As for the "do not power down while trying to update" advice, I thank you for that as well. I had not known that before, and will heed your advice in the future, as well as your advice about not updating libc6. If there is anything else you can think of, please, do not hesitate to send me a pm.

Thank you,
Sekijaku Sango

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hakerdefo
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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#4 Post by hakerdefo »

You can boot a live linux cd and attempt to rescue your data. The one I would suggest is 'GParted Live'. You can get it from here,
http://gparted.sourceforge.net/livecd.php
If you have partitioned your hard disk then it would be very easy to copy your data from the partition where Debian is installed to other partition(s). But if you only have a single partition and don't have external storage options then you can resize the partition, create a new partition from the created space and copy the data over to that newly created partition. 'GParted Live' has a very good documentation on this,
http://gparted.sourceforge.net/display- ... elp-manual
In the end I would caution you that playing around with hard disk partitions is potentialy risky. There is always a chance of data-loss.
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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#5 Post by keithpeter »

"...Scared that I was going to completely wipe my entire computer on accident, along with the 56 gigabytes worth of music I had on there"
Please save up for an external hard drive.

Experimenting with your only computer with no backup sounds like a disaster waiting to happen.

icorey2014
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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#6 Post by icorey2014 »

Please save up for an external hard drive.

Experimenting with your only computer with no backup sounds like a disaster waiting to happen.
You're absolutely right. I really don't know why I was messing around with things like that without one in the first place, it was honestly a very stupid decision on my part. I'll either have to buy an external one or convert an internal one to external.

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#7 Post by sunrat »

Search these forums for quite a few threads where people have done exactly the same thing as you, usually by trying to update libc6 from some external source. It will break wheezy.
Also there is advice on how to install Steam safely on wheezy.
I second the advice to get a large external drive to backup all your data, and also do a full system backup. Next time you destroy your system you will be able to restore it from backup in a few minutes.
See my sig.
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Those who have lost data
...and those who have not lost data YET ”
Remember to BACKUP!

M51
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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#8 Post by M51 »

Another piece of advice:

Before running any apt-get command, try the same command with a -s argument. That will simulate exactly what the command will do to your system.

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#9 Post by dasein »

M51 wrote:Before running any apt-get command, try the same command with a -s argument.
+1 in a huge way.

Doing a road-test on any change (including a purported "upgrade") is no guarantee, but it can help avoid some portion of the knucklehead stuff.

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#10 Post by mor »

I agree, but only to a certain extent.

The execution of apt-get or aptitude commands comes with a summary of what it is gonna happen and a very clear prompt for approval.
If a user is careful and reads what is gonna happen, usually the simulation is just redundancy. If, on the other hand, a user is prone to do these things superficially, then having to simulate before the actual command could become a recipe for even greater superficiality, having to go through a duplicate set of information.

Sure, sometime, especially with aptitude, running a simulation can be nice when we just want to see the dependency resolver propose solutions (by the way -s is useful if one wants to execute operative commands as a normal user), but then again, even without doing a simulation, it is sufficient to just say no at the end.

So yes, use the -s argument, but most of all: READ WHAT APT IS GOING TO DO BEFORE COMMITTING! :D

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#11 Post by zipmaster07 »

I'm surprised to see that nobody has suggested a fix of your system instead of proposing to just do a re-install. One of the great benefits of GNU/Linux is its resiliency and all the troubleshooting tools it offers. Also, fixing your system from a major issue such as this can be very rewarding: another great benefit of working with GNU/Linux and FOSS in general. It's true that starting from scratch is probably easier. However, if you were interested (or for those that are in the same situation, present or future, that are not interested in a re-install) this is what I would propose. Keep in mind that I myself have limited experience/exposure and the amount of information I have about your system is also limited to what has been provided. Perhaps others with more experience can comment or correct my solution or add to the list and make enhancements to it:

Boot from a rescue CD. Debian's own rescue CD (https://www.debian.org/CD/live/) or GParted as mentioned previously would work fine.
Once in a live CD you would want to mount your current system. There is a lot that depends on how you originally setup your system: single partition, multiple partitions, LVM, RAID, encryption, etc. I'm assuming the simplest install (a single partition). You need to find your root partition under /dev. /dev itself is a virtual filesystem which holds files that represent devices under it, such as your hard drive. It would be called something like: /dev/sda1. You can use the fdisk program to see all your block devices (fdisk -l). I would mount it to the /mnt directory, you can do this using the mount command:

Code: Select all

sudo mount /dev/sdXX /mnt
After this you need to mount virtual filesystems including /dev /proc /sys (also using the mount command):

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sudo mount --bind /dev /mnt/dev
sudo mount --bind /proc /mnt/proc
sudo mount --bind /sys /mnt/sys
From this point you would want to chroot into your system that you mounted. chroot, in simple terms, essentially tricks the system into thinking that /mnt is now equal to /. You can exit out of your chroot environment by hitting ctrl + d:

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sudo chroot /mnt
If all is well and good at this point I would reinstall libc6 (from wheezy's repos):

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sudo apt-get install --reinstall libc6
libc6 is a very important shared library. Steam requires version 2.15 of libc6 (at least last I checked), and wheezy has version 2.13 installed. Upgrading libc6 is a very non-trivial task which is why so many important libraries and other programs were being installed/upgraded when you tried to install steam. As others have mentioned it is possible to install steam against version 2.13.

Just re-installing libc6 may not completely fix your system (or fix it at all), it may also require re-installing Gnome components, video drivers, etc. Only further troubleshooting will tell. Once the system was back to a workable state you would want to unmount everything and then reboot into your fixed system:

ctrl + d (to exit the chroot environment)

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sudo umount /mnt/dev
sudo umount /mnt/proc
sudo umount /mnt/sys
sudo umount /mnt
sudo reboot
This is probably the first approach I would try. Perhaps others have a better solution or might be able to see holes in this solution that I'm missing. Not to be anti-climatic but if you are more interested in just getting a working system again then doing a re-install would probably be the better route. Then again, the solution to this problem may be easier than you think, you never know until you try. Finally to reiterate what others have said: backups are very important and most people push aside setting up regular backups until something disastrous happens to their system.

Josh

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#12 Post by dasein »

zipmaster07 wrote:I'm surprised to see that nobody has suggested a fix of your system instead of proposing to just do a re-install.
Here's my guess: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Principle_of_least_effort

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#13 Post by mor »

zipmaster07 wrote:I'm surprised to see that nobody has suggested a fix of your system instead of proposing to just do a re-install. One of the great benefits of GNU/Linux is its resiliency and all the troubleshooting tools it offers.
Josh, don't be surprised.

The reality of the fact that nobody gave an answer like yours is pretty easy to understand. DNL wrote it very clearly in the first reply:
dilberts_left_nut wrote:Your system is in an unknown state - presumably you were in the middle of upgrading libc6 (a very bad idea in itself) when you pulled the plug.
It MAY be recoverable, but you're unlikely to find someone with the motivation to handhold you through the process remotely and the smart course of action is to wipe it and reinstall.
You are the surprising factor here, not all those who didn't do what you did. ;)

We often make assumptions based on users' attitudes and those assumptions may lead us to be convinced that our potential effort in giving answers like yours will go completely wasted.
And you have to be fair in conceding that it was easy to believe that the OP, regardless of the fact that has probably already reinstalled, wasn't in any case gonna go through the highly rewarding and instructive but lengthy and demanding process of figuring out the issue and fixing it, thus making any effort to handhold him quite vain.

That said, I hope that yours won't be vain, but I have to confess I fear so.

Bye and take care.

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#14 Post by ew-linux »

Personally I would say that the first thing you should do, is to rescue any important data with a live-cd. Copy it to a usb-stick, external hdd or whatever. Then do as Zipmaster suggests, because even if it's easier to just reinstall, you learn a lot more by trying to fix the current install. Worst case scenario, you end up reinstalling if you can't fix it. So why not try to fix it instead of just reinstalling it?

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#15 Post by zipmaster07 »

mor wrote:regardless of the fact that has probably already reinstalled, wasn't in any case gonna go through the highly rewarding and instructive but lengthy and demanding process of figuring out the issue and fixing it, thus making any effort to handhold him quite vain.

That said, I hope that yours won't be vain, but I have to confess I fear so.
Agreed, It is more common to restart from scratch than fix complicated issues, I myself have done that several times... I don't really have any issues if my advise is never used (or is in vain as you put it), but I thought I'd chime in anyway. Maybe someone in the future will run into the same problem and want to recover their system. :D

-Josh

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#16 Post by acewiza »

zipmaster07 wrote:I'm surprised to see that nobody has suggested a fix of your system instead of proposing to just do a re-install.
Not me. That is why I never ask for help on forums like this. The hardcore denizens of these places by nature typically view themselves as some sort of cyber-elites. They often seem to like to get their vicarious jollies from embellishing their condescending attitudes and trivializing others. The way the other half lives is jumping from forum to forum in disgust. Most just lurk.
Nobody would ever ask questions If everyone possessed encyclopedic knowledge of the man pages.

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#17 Post by keithpeter »

acewiza wrote:
zipmaster07 wrote:I'm surprised to see that nobody has suggested a fix of your system instead of proposing to just do a re-install.
Not me. That is why I never ask for help on forums like this. The hardcore denizens of these places by nature typically view themselves as some sort of cyber-elites. They often seem to like to get their vicarious jollies from embellishing their condescending attitudes and trivializing others. The way the other half lives is jumping from forum to forum in disgust. Most just lurk.
I didn't make suggestions as to how to fix the aborted install for the simple reason that I haven't a clue how to go about that.

Given the extremely complex interconnectedness of Linux these days, it simply might be quicker to reinstall if a fresh installation goes badly wrong. Especially if you have backups of data. Which is why I spoke up.

No condescension intended.

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Re: WRECKED COMPUTER WITH STEAM INSTALL!! HELP!!!

#18 Post by ew-linux »

acewiza wrote:
zipmaster07 wrote:I'm surprised to see that nobody has suggested a fix of your system instead of proposing to just do a re-install.
Not me. That is why I never ask for help on forums like this. The hardcore denizens of these places by nature typically view themselves as some sort of cyber-elites. They often seem to like to get their vicarious jollies from embellishing their condescending attitudes and trivializing others. The way the other half lives is jumping from forum to forum in disgust. Most just lurk.
That's unfortunately quite true. But the solution is to stand up to those nasty self-proclaimed experts. I have seen a couple of them in this forum, but in no way am I going to let them walk all over me. Some of them do have skills, and some just pretend to have skills, but even if they should posess the skills that they think they do, it's never ever acceptable to talk down to anyone less skillfull. Being skilled in Linux can't be an exscuse to behave like an a..hole, and skilled people should participate in this forum to help people. Not to flaunt own skills and belittle other users. That's just despickable :)

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