Can't get into my FileVault

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by bug, Nov 3, 2005.

  1. bug macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2004
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #1
    Hi -

    I have a user that is secured using FileVault, and all was working well for many months. Now I just can't access the files at all. If I try to log in as that user, it just hangs immediately after typing in the password (requires hard reset) and if I try to mount the sparseimage file, it asks for the password, accepts it, and then just does nothing. I've put the image into Disk Utilities and it claims there are no problems. What's going on? Is there anyway I can reclaim my information from this image?

    Thanks!
     
  2. bug thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2004
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #2
    OK - just noticed right this moment that I can actually open a terminal and look at the contents by going into /Volumes/<username> for that user, and things seem to be ok, but I still can't log in as the user or access the files using Finder.
     
  3. iGary Guest

    iGary

    Joined:
    May 26, 2004
    Location:
    Randy's House
    #3
    You're pretty much screwed, I'm afraid.

    Hopefully I am wrong. :eek:
     
  4. bug thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2004
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #4
    Even though I have access to the files? I mean, I'll just use terminal and back them all up and recreate the secured user if that is what it takes, but it seems like there is something silly happening if Finder is not displaying a perfectly mountable file system with the rest of the disks. What does Finder use as a cue to display these? ...man it's so annoying that there isn't an option to force Finder to show all the files in the root of the drive.

    Every encrypted container I've ever used has screwed me somehow. It's ironic that this is supposed to be where you put your most sensitive data. I'd be more then willing to give up the space for enough parity files to recover if it would just happen automatically - even if it was 2:1 and cut access time in half.
     
  5. bug thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2004
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #5
    So to investigate this further, I created an additional user named 'test' and enabled FileVault for that user. When logged into my primary user (bug, who does not have FileVault enabled, but who is an admin) I can mount both the old account that is not working (secure) and the new one (test) by double clicking on the 'sparseimage' file and entering that user's password.

    The 'test' user's home directory gets mounted and is visible with Finder, but the 'sercure' user's home directory is NOT visible with Finder. If I open terminal and go into /Volumes, I can see both 'test' and 'secure' as mounted file systems, and both are browsable and the files seem to be in tact on my 'secure' user account (even though I can't log in).

    The only difference that I can see is that the user and group that owns the mounted directory for 'secure' is the 'secure' user, but the user and group for the 'test' directory is actually my primary user 'bug'. The owner and group of the '.sparseimage' file for each of these users is the user them self - i.e. even though when I mount 'test.sparseimage' the user who mounts it owns it (and it is listed and browsable in Finder), when I mount 'secure.sparseimage' the 'secure' user still owns it. I think this is the problem.

    Now, certainly since I can read all my files it seems that I can just back them all up, delete that user and start over - but it seems like there should be a simpler fix then that. I've tried chown using root, but even root is not permitted to change the ownership of the mounted /Volumes/secure directory.

    Does anyone understand what is going on here?

    Thanks!
     
  6. bug thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2004
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #6
    ...one more interesting piece of info - just trying to unmount secure I did:
    umount secure

    The command passed with no errors, but I noticed that secure was still listed in /Volumes. For some reason, the group (but not user) owner had changed to admin. I can STILL browse the /Volumes/secure directory at this point, but now if i do
    umount secure

    again, I get the 'not currently mounted' error message.

    This is some pretty weird stuff.
     
  7. Flowbee macrumors 68030

    Flowbee

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Location:
    Alameda, CA
    #7
    Glad to hear that you didn't end up losing all your pr0n.:p
     
  8. bug thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2004
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #8
    I don't think there is any compelling reason to encrypt porn in Canada - is that all everyone else uses FileVault for? No one cares about keeping tax data secure? ...or switches to an encrypted user to VPN into work when pulling down a code base from CVS that you'd be fired if it leaked?

    Even with all that detailed information I'm providing no one has any help to offer?
     
  9. Raid macrumors 68020

    Raid

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2003
    Location:
    Toronto
    #9
    I had a similar problem awhile back, it appears when I was using filevault the encrypted disk image created during shutdown was corrupted...

    Now I didn't go through the terminal like you did, and I'm glad you can still see your files, honestly I'd count my blessings, copy what I can from the secure image and rebuild the user account!

    Honestly after my incident with file valut I never have used it again, and I bought an external firewire drive to back up my data!
     
  10. bug thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2004
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #10
    I will probably take your advice, count my blessings, and move on - but I'm just of the personality type that I find that hard to do! ;)

    Since it seems that the image is being mounted as the wrong user, it makes me think it is a permissions problem or some programmatic issue that can be solved. Its more that I want to figure it out so that when it happens again I have a solution.

    I can see how in your situation it is likely that the image was genuinely corrupt, but I've done a scan on the image and it has no errors, and all the files are in tact, so it doesn't seem like mine is actually corrupt - it seems more like the OS just can't get proper access to it and so it does not display in Finder and I can't log in as that user. I'm pretty sure it is a permissions thing, but since the only user that looks as if they could repair the permissions can't log in, I may be hosed.

    Anyway - yes I will just recover my data an move on, but it still seems like an 'interesting' problem worth investigation.

    Thanks!
     

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