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Recover corrupted Ubuntu partition

So I have a laptop dual-booting Windows 8.1 and Ubuntu 14.04, and my Ubuntu partition ran out of space. I shrank the only partition I could to make more room for Ubuntu, but the unallocated space came before the partition and I couldn't extend into it. I tried switching the partition and unallocated space, but quickly realized that my computer no longer knew where Ubuntu was. I tried moving it back, but that didn't fix it. I did back up my filesystem beforehand, but like a noob I forgot to copy the backups somewhere else. All my important files are already backed up, but I'd prefer to be able to easily restore all my system settings when I reinstall Ubuntu. Is there a way I can recover my backup files from my Ubuntu partition?

**EDIT**
Can I recover my data by cloning the partition into the unallocated space? Since I only moved the partition, presumably nothing inside it is actually corrupted, so in theory cloning it would produce an exact copy and my computer would know where it is.
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  1. Best answer
    Boot Linux from DVD/USB, and try TestDisk. Be careful what you are doing so you don't damage your Windows partition.
  2. Alabalcho said:
    Boot Linux from DVD/USB, and try TestDisk. Be careful what you are doing so you don't damage your Windows partition.


    Thanks man! I took a look at my partition with TestDisk and everything seems to be there. Now if I install Ubuntu into a fresh partition, can I copy all the files out of the corrupted one and completely replace my new installation? And if so, how would I go about doing it?
  3. Find large enough external hard drive / USB key, and copy over the stuff you need off that partition. If you do what you have proposed, you will end up in the same ship you were - empty empty space on the drive, wanting to move / expand partition etc.

    You might have troubles installing Ubuntu "into a fresh partition" if you already have four partitions on that drive.
  4. Or you could make a new NTFS partition that can be used by both windows and Ubuntu as a data partition.
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